Music and tech evangelist Ted Cohen, Founder and Managing Partner at TAG Strategic, and Partner to Rosenzweig & Company, will be the recipient of music business association NARM’s Presidential Award for Sustained Industry Achievement. Cohen will receive the Award at the Music Biz 2013 Breakfast & Opening Session, which will be held on Wednesday, May 8, from 8:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles. The Award recognizes Cohen’s three decades in the industry, during which he has been a true digital visionary, helping to craft the original licensing agreements for iTunes and Rhapsody and convincing record labels, music publishers, and the creative community to embrace the possibilities of new technology.
“Without Ted Cohen’s influence, the music industry would be a much different place today,” said Jim Donio, President of NARM. “In a time when record companies were exploring the best ways to make the digital revolution work for them, Ted provided a clear vision for the future that has helped to stabilize our industry, and he remains a key influencer today thanks to his work with TAG Strategic. He is a true pioneer in our field, and we are excited to present him with our Presidential Award.”
“NARM has been a strong force for progress in our industry, and it’s an honor to receive this Award from the organization,” said Cohen. “As technology continues to advance, new possibilities are presenting themselves at a rapid pace. It is up to us to ensure that we are swimming with the tide and figuring out how best to take advantage of these opportunities, rather than allowing ourselves to be swept away.”
NARM has honored a wide range of industry leaders and organizations with the Presidential Award, such as last year’s recipient, the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Past winners include: Akio Morita, former President of Sony Music Entertainment; John Marmaduke, President and CEO of Hastings Entertainment; Jim Urie, CEO of Universal Music Group Distribution; Robert Higgins, Chairman and CEO of Trans World Entertainment Corp.; Clive Davis, Sony Music Entertainment; Walter Yetnikoff, former President of CVS Records; Jack Eugster, former Chairman, CEO and President of Musicland; Eric Paulson, Founder and former Executive Chairman of Navarre Corp.; Don Cornelius, host creator of ‘Soul Train;’ Russ Solomon, Founder of Tower Records; Paul Smith, former Chairman of Sony Music Distribution; Henry Droz, former President and Chairman of Universal Music & Video Distribution; Ahmet & Nesuhi Ertegun, Atlantic Records; and Dick Clark, Chairman and CEO of Dick Clark Productions; as well as the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences (NARAS) and the Country Music Association (CMA), among others.
Cohen is a 30-year music industry veteran who founded digital entertainment consulting firm TAG Strategic in 2006. He got his start on the road with Alice Cooper and Van Halen, eventually working his way up to senior management positions at Warner Bros. Records, Philips Media, and EMI Music.
As the Executive Vice President of Digital Music Network, Inc. in the mid-1990s, Cohen cocreated and led the seminal Webnoize conferences, showcasing most of the nascent technologies that continue to shape today’s industry, and consulting clients such as Amazon, Microsoft, Universal Studios, and DreamWorks Records. From 2000-2006, as Senior Vice President of Digital Development & Distribution for EMI Music, he helped the label become a leader in the industry by embracing new technologies and business models such as digital downloads and online music subscriptions, custom digital compilations, wireless services, high-definition audio, and Internet radio.
In addition to being an advisor to digitalmusic.org since its inception, since 2000, Cohen chaired MidemNet, an international music and technology conference convened in Cannes for 12 years. He served on the NARAS (Grammy) Los Angeles chapter Board of Governors as well as the National Trustee Board. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Neil Bogart Memorial and Mouse.org, an innovative charity that puts computers in the hands of deserving students.
For more information or to register for Music Biz 2013, visit www.narm.com/events/musicbiz2013.