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MMF at CMJ Music Marathon

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Music Managers Forum (MMF-US) presented several successful events at this year's CMJ (College Music Journal) Music Marathon in New York City on September 17, 2005. Beginning with two informative management panels educating audiences at Lincoln Center, MMF then held a peer group meeting of managers gathered from around the world, culminating to an evening of live performances at the MMF Showcase at the Lion's Den in Greenwich Village. In the aftermath of MMF at CMJ, several new members have joined the non-profit organization, as MMF has reached out to the greater NYC music community through educational outreach and live performances.



MMF'S board members and panel moderators Steve Garvan (Garvan Management) and Steve Scharf (Steven Scharf Entertainment & Carlin America) represented MMF in presenting two well attended educational panels during CMJ's final day.

Garvan's first panel entitled "Everything You Wanted To Know About Management But Were Afraid To Ask" assembled an impressive array of national and international managers providing useful information of real world experiences for successful management. Panelists included: Jonathan Shalit (Shalit Global), Dougie Souness (No Half Measures Ltd.), Ron Shapiro (Ron Shapiro Management), Tom Sarig (Esther Creative Group) and Pedro Yanowitz of the band Morningwood.


"Everything You Wanted To Know About Management But Were Afraid To Ask" panel

Scharf, now a veteran of putting together CMJ & SXSW panels for the MMF, assembled a group of music and technology expert panelists for the second MMF panel entitled "21st Century Management: New Models, Paradigms and Opportunities" to a standing room only audience at Alice Tully Lobby in Lincoln Center. Panelists included: Tiffany Barsotti (Rowe/AMI Entertainment), Whitney Broussard (Selverne, Mandelbaum & Mintz), Jack Freudenheim of the band 46 Bliss, Dick Huey (Toolshed Inc.) and Mick Wainman (Digital Music Marketing).


"21st Century Management: New Models, Paradigms and Opportunities" panel

After each panel, MMF was successful in disseminating information about
the MMF Educational Series planned for the future, the evening's
MMF showcase at the Lion's Den, and the peer group meeting which took
place during the afternoon. The MMF Peer Group Meeting privately met together with MMF members and music managers gathered from around the world to discuss the organization, its accomplishes, benefits and future plans. Keynote speeches were made by MMF-US President Barry Bergman and the IMMF's Executive Director Michael McMartin from Australia.



CMJ highlighted the MMF showcase by making it a 'featured event' in its online and printed materials. At the Lion's Den, MMF kicked off the night with a managers network gathering including an MMF board member
photo shoot. The MMF board then took photos with Crazy James, a teen youth band cultivated by New Yorks's non-profit Road Recovery Foundation.


MMF board and Crazy James, Photo: Stuart Williams

Following a heartfelt introduction by MMF President Barry Bergman who professed his personal support of Road Recovery and its efforts to promote substance free living through the power of music, Crazy James took the stage for a 20-minute set of spirited alternative/pop songs backed by ten teens in recovery supported by music industry professionals touched by substance abuse. The Lion's Den reached capacity proportions for this opening set as the crowd rallied the teen group relishing the spotlight after months of dedicated work on their recovery and musical rehearsals.


MMF President Barry Bergman and Crazy James, Photo: Stuart Williams

Crazy James performs, Photo: Stuart Williams

Ali & The Electric Insect, an emerging NYC act transplanted from Dallas and Iran, is managed by one of MMF's founding board members Steven Scharf. Ali conjured the spirit of his influences, a mixture of his own musical blend, Led Zeppelin, Cream and Nusrat Fateh Ali Kahn. His 3-piece rock act performed an energetic set that charged the crowd during politically fueled songs and quieted the audience during haunting vocalizations of a mystical, middle eastern nature.

Ali & The Electric Insect, Photo: Stuart Williams

David Berkeley "lustrous and melancholic' voice, as cited by the New York Times, filled the Lion's Den with a set of melodic, introspective and thoughtful songs. Berkeley, managed by longtime MMF board member
Alan Wolmark, presented a bigger sound with a full band in support of his new live release 'Live From Fez'.

The MMF continued its aim to present a live event of diverse artists and musical styles by showcasing veteran singer-songwriter Cindy Bullens who routed to NYC from her European tour to take part in both the CMJ and Boston's NEMO music festivals. Hailing from Nashville, Bullens performed heartrending selections from 'Dream 29' which was released on her own new label LetsPLAY Records, incidentally set-up with help from her Colorado based manager and internationally active MMF board member Steve Garvan.

David Berkeley, Photo: Stuart Williams

Cindy Bullens, Photo: Stuart Williams

LA's Fredabla jumpstarted the club with their amalgamation of hip-shaking Latin rhythms, bass-heavy hip-hop beats, streetwise rock riffs, and funky soul grooves. Fronted by passionate vocalist Eric Balfour with support from Charmian Callon on flute & keyboards, "Rooster" on guitar and a full band, Fredalba performed cuts from the forthcoming release 'Uptown Music For Downtown Kids' (Piller Records).


Fredalba, Photo: Stuart Williams

The MMF Showcase included extra late night sets performed by two bands selected by the Music Managers Forum including Philadelphia's The Popo's and popular locals LOURDS featuring the band's namesake female leader who plays virtuoso electric violin, mandolin, electric guitar and sings. LOURDS described their live performance as "we move from pissed off to pensive, from quirky to flirty, from torn to triumphant" in support of their new self releases LOURDS bootleg & Myspace 4-song EP.



LOURDS, Photo: Stuart Williams


The Popos, Photo: Stuart Williams

The MMF Board thanks all the artists, their managers and supportive labels, the promoter CEG Music, the staff of the Lion's Den, CMJ, MMF's key showcase organizers Craig Hyman & Preston Powell, and most importantly the fans who made the night a complete musical, financial, and educational success for MMF's outreach during the CMJ Music Marathon.


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