Steve Stoute is someone I’ve long admired and respected for his business savvy. Actually, one thing a lot of people don’t know, is that while I am influenced by many business leaders, it was actually his movements that motivated me to start my own business.
When Steve Stoute started Translation in 2004, I found any piece of news I could find about the company, its vision and its work. I was tired of seeing the limited creative input at label jobs and the limited growth potential up here in Canada. I wanted to do something different and something more.
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?
While all of us are constantly thinking of new ideas on how to generate revenue in today’s music business, No Doubt has come up with a solution of their own – they’re making their entire catalog available for download – for free.