This is the second half of a 2-part interview with Zach Katz. To read Part 1, please click here.
Do you focus more on placing J.R Rotem’s music with artists or are you more focused on placing music with film, television and video games?
We do both, but I primarily focus on placing his music with artists.
We have an incredible publisher that helps us, Sony/ATV. That’s one of the reasons to do a publishing deal – to add more people to your team. They have a full film, television & video game department, who I provide music to on a regular basis, and their job is to go out there and to secure placements.
So I don’t do it all alone; I have people on the team who can also help.
But that income is definitely valuable, and the name of the game – especially in this shrinking market – is to capitalize and bring in as many revenue sources as possible.
One issue many upcoming producers have is knowing when to do free production for an artist and when to start charging. Also, once they do charge, how much to charge. How do you recommend they approach that issue?
Producer Manager & CEO of Beluga Height, Zach Katz
Firstly, can you introduce yourself a bit and tell us what it is that you do?
My name is Zach Katz. I am a music manager and CEO of Beluga Heights, a record label and publishing company I have with my partners Jonathan “J.R” Rotem, the producer, and his brother Tommy Rotem, who is our A&R.
My background started about 12 years ago, when I became a music attorney. This was around 1996 or so. I did that for about 3-4 years. I liked it, but never really found it to be my passion. I always wanted to be more creative.
I had an opportunity to get in on the management side, which is really what I always wanted to do. I did that for about 5-6 years; I managed a lot of artists and producers, and through that I met J.R, and he became my only client.
Going from an attorney to a manager seems like a bit of an odd jump; how did that happen?
As I prepare for Producers Week next week, I felt like something was missing.
I’m already featuring interviews with hit producers, and producer managers to offer incredibly valuable information for aspiring producers looking for some industry insight. But it still felt like something was missing.
Then, I opened up questions for everybody to ask Midi Mafia any questions by leaving them in the comments right here on makingthemogul.com.
Still, I felt like something was missing.
I wanted to offer something else to complete the circle.
You’re already getting incredible insight and information from Producers Week. But what about an opportunity to place your music? That would complete the week.
I won’t lie to you, I completely freestyled this idea about 2 hours ago, so with the little time that I have, I wanted to create something that could benefit any upcoming producer.
So, I made a quick call, and – well, how’s an opportunity to place one of your beats with Young Money sound?
Music production can be incredibly challenging to get into; especially when technology has made it possible for nearly anybody to have a fair shot at it. But whether you’re learning to produce in a music school or learning on your own, nothing can replace real, live examples of music you listen to every single day.
Earlier last week, I met with producers Dow Jones & Henny of Tha Bizness. During our conversation, we began discussing blogging, social media and different ways of using them effectively to not only connect with an audience, but also to educate others making their way up.
Seeing that Tha Bizness have their own blog, I suggested making a video walkthrough of some of the hits they’ve been creating.
Being the forward thinking guys they are, they were open to the idea.
In this impromptu video, the man himself, DJ Toomp, discusses the business of production and making it as a producer.