Syntax Creative We Do Good Work For Money Tue, 13 Sep 2016 19:36:51 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Syntax Creative 32 32 82317294 Syntax Creative Enters Into Landmark Deal With Pandora Tue, 13 Sep 2016 19:16:15 +0000 Pandora, the go-to music source for fans and artists, today announced the signing of direct licensing agreements for recorded music with Merlin Network, Sony Music and Universal Music Group, along with Syntax Creative and over 30 other independent labels and distributors.

These landmark agreements create a win-win partnership between Pandora and the music industry, opening up new revenue streams for artists and labels, while paving the way for Pandora to bring new products to market that enable enhanced subscription services, fuel new advertising opportunities and deliver unprecedented flexibility and ease of use to listeners. The agreements apply to Pandora’s business in the United States.

“This was a truly collaborative attempt to find a solution that would support artists while profitably growing our respective businesses,” said Tim Westergren, founder and CEO of Pandora. “And that is exactly what we achieved. Working together, we can reshape the digital music market and grow a great business that provides tremendous value to the music industry for decades to come.”

The newly signed music companies join ASCAP, BMI and more than 2,700 publishers who also recently partnered with Pandora to license their full catalogs for use on the company’s upcoming products, ensuring a steady new stream of income to recording artists and songwriters alike.

Today, more than 78 million users listen over 24 hours per month to Pandora’s ad-supported and subscription offerings – more than twice the engagement of all other streaming services. With these agreements, Pandora will soon deliver the world’s most personal and complete music experience, while opening up the full power of the platform to connect artists with their fans at scale and leverage the promotional offerings of Pandora’s Artist Marketing Platform (AMP).

Charles Caldas, CEO of Merlin Network

“We are very pleased to broaden our relationship with Pandora, and to see additional revenue opportunities being created for our members. Independent music has always been at the heart of Pandora’s experience, and we are confident that Pandora’s users will appreciate and enjoy the music from Merlin’s market-leading member labels and artists as a vital element of the newly enhanced experience.”

Doug Morris, CEO of Sony Music

“This partnership should be a very encouraging sign for the entire industry. Pandora is a company founded and run by a musician. We are naturally aligned and look forward to growing the music business together and collaborating to support our artists in the digital era.”

Sir Lucian Grainge, Chairman and CEO of Universal Music Group

“We are pleased to work with Pandora to enable compelling new products and services for one of the largest music streaming audiences in the world. Working collaboratively, we have created a thoughtful partnership that enables innovation and has the potential to delight music fans and benefit the entire music ecosystem of recording artists, songwriters, labels and publishers.”


Pandora is the world’s most powerful music discovery platform – a place where artists find their fans and listeners find music they love. We are driven by a single purpose: unleashing the infinite power of music by connecting artists and fans, whether through earbuds, car speakers, live on stage or anywhere fans want to experience it. Our team of highly trained musicologists analyze hundreds of attributes for each recording which powers our proprietary Music Genome Project®, delivering billions of hours of personalized music tailored to the tastes of each music listener, full of discovery, making artist/fan connections at unprecedented scale. Founded by musicians, Pandora empowers artists with valuable data and tools to help grow their careers and connect with their fans.

Syntax Creative To Program Music Business Track At 16th Annual Flavor Fest In Tampa, Fla. Wed, 17 Aug 2016 03:44:45 +0000 Flavor Fest, a leadership conference based in Tampa, Fla., has enlisted Syntax Creative CEO Timothy J. Trudeau to manage the Music Business Track at its 16th annual gathering from Oct. 6-9. Syntax will feature N.D. Wilson, author of the bestselling “100 Cupboards” trilogy published by Random House, Scott Heuerman, VP Marketing at BubbleUp and formerly of iTunes Music and Lifestyle Marketing, and Roger Holmes, owner and President of Sierra Management, which represents three-time Grammy Award-winner Donnie McClurkin and The Isaacs.

This year’s track will include six workshops, which is two more than last year, as well as a premiere of the short film “The Hound of Heaven” starring Propaganda. The workshops will include teaching, panel discussions, audience Q&A and even built-in time for networking.

Wilson’s session, “Works of Art and the Art of Work,” will assert that the “sacred versus secular” debate is based on a false choice and provides a healthier approach to think about believing artists and their handiwork. Wilson has been published by HarperCollins, Random House, Thomas Nelson and Esquire Magazine, as well as featured by the Today Show, NPR and National Geographic, among others.

Heuerman’s session, “Technology Changes, Marketing Doesn’t,” will demonstrate how to remain grounded on the business side while everything around the music industry is constantly changing. He manages the Nashville office of BubbleUp, a digital media company whose customers include Jimmy Buffett, Luke Bryan, Beth Moore, The Avett Brothers, The Curtis Mayfield Estate, Natalie Grant, The Zac Brown Band and Dierks Bentley, among others.

“We live in a results-based business,” Heuerman said, “and Syntax’s reputation is what led me to want to do this conference.”

Holmes’s session, “The Business of Music,” will take an honest look at how to actually create revenue in an industry which continues to struggle. For the past 35 years, he has earned a living in a variety of roles including as a touring artist, recording engineer, publisher, producer and, now, manager.

“This is not your daddy’s music industry,” Holmes said. “Within the last five years, the business of music has undergone a total and, some would say, a catastrophic change. We can’t sell records the same way and we can’t advertise the same way. Syntax is firmly positioned and has demonstrated an understanding of the new model.”

Last year’s Music Business Track curated by Syntax Creative immediately led to the formation of numerous productive business relationships.

“Flavor Fest has always been a great experience for me and my team,” Reflection Music Group CEO Doc Watson said. “I have met some key people like Billy Johnson, Jr. who is now working with us on our current projects. The network and knowledge gained at Flavor Fest is key if you are looking to grow.”

“It was an honor to attend Flavor Fest last year and to participate in the Syntax Creative Music Business Track,” Johnson said. “My workshop gave me the opportunity to share my best media practices experiences with the attendees. It even opened the door for me to personally connect and work with Doc Watson of Reflection Music Group. I am eagerly looking forward to returning this year.”

Johnson has interviewed Beyoncé, Janet Jackson, Quincy Jones, Kanye West, Eminem and Mary J. Blige over his 20-plus years covering hip hop, R&B and pop music. And Flavor Fest attendees will have the ability to interview him, as well as other influential members of the music industry, when they sign up for Syntax’s “Speed Networking” session.

Registration is available at for a discounted rate until Sept. 30, when it will rise to its walk-up registration pricing.

“I’m excited to partner with Syntax again,” Flavor Fest founder Tommy Kyllonen said. “I’ve had a great relationship with Tim and his team for many years. I have enjoyed watching Syntax grow from a small idea into a very large independent music and marketing firm. Once again, they will be bringing tons of valuable knowledge and priceless expertise to share with both the up-and-coming and established artists who are attending Flavor Fest.”

“Flavor Fest is not only one of most affordable conferences I have attended, it’s one of the best,” Trudeau said. “I didn’t choose speakers solely on their ability to draw a crowd. I picked people who would be able to genuinely help. Wilson, Heuerman, Holmes and Johnson are self-motivated, thoughtful leaders who have worked their way to the top of their respective fields. We are fortunate that they will bring their knowledge and experience to this year’s Flavor Fest.


Rhapsody + Napster = Napster Thu, 14 Jul 2016 21:58:53 +0000  

Rhapsody is now Napster. We’re the same great service you love – all of your playlists, favorites, albums and artists have not changed. Today, the Rhapsody app will become the Napster app automatically via app store auto-updates, so you don’t have to do anything to keep listening to your favorite tunes.

What has changed is that we are one big happy family now, joining 33 other countries where we’ve been operating as Napster. This means that you, and other music lovers just like you, will know us as one brand that brings a consistent best-in-class music experience to our customers and partners worldwide.

In celebration of our name change, we’re bringing you an exclusive new track from an award-winning, chart-topping pop group, thanks to our friends at Epic Records as part of New Release Friday.

The Napster name reflects our 15-year mission to deliver the best way to discover, share and listen to the music you love, anytime, anywhere. As one global brand, Napster customers can also tap into the power of our Listener Network, which lets listeners around the world create, find, and follow playlists in the same way friends used to swap mixtapes and CDs. So whether you’re backpacking in Patagonia, sunning on the isles of Greece or sipping on cappuccinos in Florence, you can connect with friends and a global community of music fans with one click to find new music you love. In other words, your next favorite playlist could be from someone sitting next to you or a fellow like-minded music fan in Monte Carlo.

So, what’s new?

  1. As of today, all services and products previously known as Rhapsody are now Napster to form one global brand across all 34 countries,
  2. There are no changes to your playlists, listening history or favorite music.
  3. The Napster app is updated worldwide on iOS and Android, with personalization improvements such as:

o   New home screen provides easier direct access to your favorite content, including recently-played music, personal charts and favorites.

o   Global Listener Network allows you to explore other listeners’ playlists and favorites to discover more music.

o   Improved Explore experience gives you quick access to your favorite genres, a dashboard view of most played tracks, playlists and artists, as well as a new Search bar to promote browsing from any screen.

The bottom line? With Napster, the music you love is still at your fingertips and ready to go wherever you are, online or off.

To our customers and partners across the globe, THANK YOU for being part of our global community. You power our global Listener Network that makes Napster the world’s best music streaming experience. We’re excited to roll out a new look and feel that celebrates our passion for music itself and the community and emotional connection it cultivates.

Not a current Napster U.S. subscriber? Check us out today by signing up for a free 30-day trial at

Bluegrass and Gospel Master Doyle Lawson presents Burden Bearer Tue, 24 May 2016 16:37:16 +0000 Mountain Home Music Company has announced a July 8, 2016 release date for Burden Bearer from Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver. The pre-order is available now at iTunes, Amazon, Google Play & 7digital.

Bluegrass Hall of Fame member Doyle Lawson is well known for high standards in every aspect of his musical career. Burden Bearer is the latest example of the exquisite precision in vocals, harmony and musicianship of Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver. The album is reminiscent of a traditional “call to a camp meeting.” It is a special music event of Bluegrass Gospel and A Capella music celebrating the musical legacy of faith, hope, struggle and victory of the spirit. Old time renderings live alongside newly forged Gospel songs that pay tribute to the aged, but timeless Gospel convention music tradition.

Although his musical gifts translate seamlessly from straight-up Bluegrass to Traditional Country, Doyle Lawson is undeniably the masterful purveyor of Bluegrass Gospel. With Burden Bearer, Lawson and his band deliver traditional convention songs such as “The Touch of His Gentle Hand” and “Get Right With God,” delivered in four-part harmonies in the perfected vocal style that only DL&Q can offer. This powerhouse ensemble carries forth with remarkable Bluegrass driven songs like “God “Gave Noah the Rainbow Sign.” New compositions that harken back to yesteryear include “Best Friend” and the title cut, “Burden Bearer.”

Lawson’s current lineup is stronger than ever with lead vocals handled by Dustin Pyrtle, Eli Johnston and Lawson himself. The harmony work on In Session makes it clear why the group has won multiple IBMA Vocal Group of the Year Awards. A noted mandolin master, Lawson always surrounds himself with top-flight players. In Session also boasts the phenomenal Dobro playing and vocals of Josh Swift, the impeccable Joe Dean on banjo and vocals and newcomer Stephen Burwell on fiddle.

Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver have nearly forty albums to their credit, are seven-time IBMA Vocal Group of the Year winners, with enough Grammy, Dove, ICM, IBMA, and SPBGMA nominations and awards to fill a chalkboard. Lawson was inducted into the International Bluegrass Music Hall of Fame in 2012.

The power of music is multi-faceted and far-reaching. No matter the trials, fans know that they can experience the transformative power of the music that comes from laying burdens at the altar.

The Spinney Brothers Debut on Billboard with Living The Dream Fri, 13 May 2016 23:47:13 +0000 Mountain Fever Records is very proud to announce The Spinney Brothers have made their career debut on Billboard’s Top 10 Bluegrass Albums chart for the week of May 21st with their latest album, Living The Dream, which was released April 29th.

In recent years, The Spinney Brothers have established the reputation of being one of bluegrass music’s hardest-working, well-loved bands due to spending approximately 150 days each year traveling between their Canadian home to venues all over the United States and beyond. Their music and infectious personalities have endeared them to a growing fanbase that has become not only very loyal, but very vocal when it comes to lauding the band’s praises. In 2014, the band was nominated for two IBMA awards for Emerging Artist and Song of the Year which afforded them a performance during the prestigious IBMA Awards; a performance that has since been cited as one of the show’s highlights. Their latest album, Living The Dream, is appropriately titled since that is exactly what Allan and Rick Spinney are doing.

Along with the awards and various accolades, another dream came true with the announcement the band made their debut on Billboard’s Top 10 Bluegrass Albums chart. The chart, comprised solely of the top-selling albums each week, placed Living The Dream at #2, just below comedian-actor-banjoist Steve Martin’s Bright Star: A New Musical.  It’s not everyday that a bluegrass band can say they are taking on Broadway but that’s just exactly what has happened in this instance.

“Very few people in life get to pursue their passions as a career,” said Allan and Rick Spinney. “Music is our passion! For us to be able to tour and make our livelihoods playing music, is a dream come true, which of course is the basis of our new CD, Living The DreamFor something to happen like recognition from the Billboard Music Chart is really icing on the cake, it is quite an honor”

Mark Hodges of Mountain Fever Records quipped, “You know it would have to take King Tut to knock the Bluegrass princes of Nova Scotia from the top Billboard spot!”

The Spinney Brothers continue touring in support of Living The Dream with upcoming appearances in Missouri, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, New York, Indiana, Michigan and Ontario, Canada.

Mountain Fever Records Signs Kentucky Mountain Trio Wed, 11 May 2016 21:20:21 +0000 Mountain Fever Records is proud to announce they have signed Appalachian bluegrass gospel group, Kentucky Mountain Trio, to their label. The band has already begun work on their debut album for Mountain Fever Records, due for release early this fall.

Founded in 2008, Kentucky Mountain Trio’s sound stays true to their eastern Kentucky roots, yet they bring their own contemporary twist to whatever they do. At the forefront, lead vocalist and fiddle player, Heidi Greer, accompanied by her husband, Ryan, who plays guitar and sings harmony, put their heart and soul into their music. Heidi’s breathtaking vocals have been compared to that of Sonya Isaacs and Allison Krauss. And while that certainly puts her in esteemed vocal company, the nuances and timbre in her note selection is distinctly her own. Rounding out the trio are Matt Cromer on Dobro,  Brian Davidson on bass and Nathan Adcock on Cajón.  The combination makes for a very earthy band voice that blends perfectly.

“This past February while at SPBGMA in Nashville, I was coming back upstairs to our showcase rooms and a man I passed said, ‘You need to get up there quick,'” explains Mark Hodges of Mountain Fever Records.  “So I picked up my pace and when I arrived, I heard the last chorus of the last song of  performance by Kentucky Mountain Trio. Everyone kept telling me I should have been there earlier and that I really missed out. So I spoke with Heidi and Ryan afterwards and when I arrived at my office a few days later, I began researching their music. It didn’t take long to figure out why people were so moved by this group. So, I contacted them and we worked things out rather quickly. All of us at Mountain Fever are very excited about what the future is sure to hold for these fine young people. Their music is simple and direct but accentuates the emotion and heart-felt presentation of this young girl’s heart-stopping vocal delivery, supported by a wonderful group of musicians.”

Kentucky Mountain Trio has begun working on their debut album for Mountain Fever that will include 12 songs and should release early Fall 2016.

The McKameys – “Something Worth Saving” Tue, 10 May 2016 13:00:38 +0000 Founded in 1954, “The McKameys” is in its sixth decade of spreading God’s message of love and hope through music. Today, the group consists of Peg McKamey Bean and her husband, Ruben; their daughter Connie who is joined by her son, Elijah; and Sheryl Farris, who is also Peg and Ruben’s daughter.The wonderful harmonies of this family along with great songs gives them a unique opportunity to share God’s love as well as encourage the saints.

The McKameys play about 145 days a year, traveling throughout North America.  To date, they have had 30 number one songs.  The group has been awarded several different Singing News Fan Awards through the years with Peg being named Favorite Female Vocalist 7 times.  Ruben and Peg are both recipients of the Marvin Norcross Award and Norcross/Templeton Award respectively.

And yet, this family group is devoted to their Lord, first of all, to their church, and to their call to spread God’s Word to others through their music.

Something Worth Saving is releasing worldwide June 10th and available for pre-order now.

  1. Christ Is Able (2:54)
  2. I’ve Been In The Book (2:13)
  3. Bring You Glory (3:24)
  4. I Believe (3:06)
  5. That’s Why There’s A Cross (3:30)
  6. A Few Things (3:06)
  7. Back To Bethel (3:15)
  8. Days Gone By (3:10)
  9. Something Worth Saving (2:52)
  10. Come To My Rescue (2:48)
Powerhouse Vocalist MARi to Release Energetic Debut Album on May 27th Fri, 06 May 2016 19:38:41 +0000 Hailing from Queens, New York, powerhouse vocalist MARi is bringing a musical tapestry of texture, color and style to the Contemporary Christian Music arena with her upcoming debut album, Treasure. The album will be available on May 27th via Nashville-based Elevate Entertainment and Syntax Creative.

An energetic hybrid of dance, pop, Latin and reggae, MARi anchors her distinctive sound in equally bold lyrics. “People have fun trying to pinpoint my specific style of music,” says MARi, who wrote all of the songs on the album. “But first my music is a message—that God can take all the junk of your past and shape it into something that brings Him crazy glory.”

With Treasure, MARi delivers that message in a refreshing kaleidoscope of sounds. You’ll find it in dance tracks such as “Shine Brighter,” fiery Latin tunes like “Estoy Bien,” pop beats such as “It’s a Beautiful Day,” and inspiring anthems such as “If My People Pray,” “I Believe in Jesus,” and the title track, “Treasure.”

Influenced by genre innovators such as Lecrae, MARi admits that she tries to avoid attempts to squeeze her into a specific box, hoping instead that Treasure appeals to music lovers everywhere.

Treasure will connect with several different audiences,” says MARi. “You will have fun, you will dance, you will sing out loud for sure. But you’re also gonna end up worshipping—whether you planned to or not.”

The making of Treasure came at a time of intense personal struggle for MARi and echoes the deeper lessons she learned while traveling uncharted roads.

“Every lyric comes from having to dig deeper into God’s word than ever before,” she explains. “I was desperate for His promises. I can tell you God healed me in places I didn’t even ask Him to and in places I didn’t even know were broken. I can tell you He’s faithful.”

The central message of Treasure comes from the lessons MARi learned while making her debut album… “Life can be hard, and people can be messy, but Jesus can take that busted equation and make it shine.”

MARi is managed by Michael Smith & Associates and booked by Behind the Voice Agency.

Sister Sadie – “Self Titled” Tue, 03 May 2016 13:00:58 +0000 Sister Sadie is a straight ahead bluegrass band comprised of five good friends born out of what was originally supposed to be a one time jam at The Station Inn in Nashville, TN. Shortly after that sold out show, the band began getting calls for gigs and the girls decided to officially form Sister Sadie. Each member would remain in their own bands and from time to time get together for special events to perform. The name, Sister Sadie, was inspired by a Tony Rice song, “Little Sadie,” and the fact that the ladies feel as though they are sisters.

Sister Sadie will be in stores worldwide June 3rd and is available for pre-order now.

  1. Unholy Water (3:24)
  2. Don’t Tell Me Stories (2:34)
  3. Don’t Let Me Cross Over (4:56)
  4. Ava’s Fury (2:51)
  5. Falling (3:19)
  6. Now Forever’s Gone (2:46)
  7. Look What I’m Trading For a Mansion (4:06)
  8. I May Be A Fool (2:12)
  9. Not This Time (2:53)
  10. All I Can Do (2:29)
  11. Mama’s Room (3:52)
  12. Blood Red & Goin’ Down (4:07)
The Farm Hands – “Dig in the Dirt” Tue, 03 May 2016 13:00:30 +0000 Award winning gospel quartet The Farm Hands have recorded a new album titled Dig in the Dirt, to be released on June 3rd, 2016. Their upcoming gospel bluegrass album features five of the 12 tunes penned by band members. Band-member Daryl Mosley recently took home “Bluegrass Song Writer of the Year” at the latest SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards. The band’s Dobro player, Tim Graves won “Dobro Performer of the Year.” The band as a whole took home “Gospel Group of the Year” and “Vocal Group of the Year.” Along with Graves and Mosley (bass), the band also includes Keith Tew on guitar, Bennie Boling on banjo. The fellas are joined on the album by guest fiddler Kimberly Bibb.

The Farm Hands are one of the most exciting and talked about band in Bluegrass Music. At the 2016 SPBGMA Bluegrass Music Awards, The Farm Hands collectively took home four awards. This followed up an incredible 2015 when they received one of the SPBGMA’s highest honors, “Entertainer of the Year.” Since their inception in 2010, they have received over 40 awards and nominations including 2014’s “Album of The Year.” Their YouTube videos, Facebook, and Twitter pages have thousands of followers.

They are one of the busiest touring bands in bluegrass, performing over 150 dates per year. For anyone who has seen them in concert, none of this comes as a surprise. The group features 4 award winning singers, musicians and songwriters, including two long time veterans of Nashville’s Grand Ole Opry.

  1. Dig In The Dirt (2:12)
  2. All the Way Home (4:22)
  3. This Time’s for the Lord (4:25)
  4. I Would (3:21)
  5. It’ll Getcha Where You’re Goin’ (2:32)
  6. The Selfishness in Man (3:59)
  7. Homefolks (3:06)
  8. Rezo Ride (3:28)
  9. Medals For Mothers (3:03)
  10. It’s The Love (3:21)
  11. Mansion On Main (3:38)
  12. I Saw The Light (2:43)