Billy Mann

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Billy Mann
Billy Mann Photo April 2013.jpg
Billy Mann
Background information
Birth name William Isaiah Erlichman
Also known as William Hort-Mann, Billy Mann
Born (1968-12-30) December 30, 1968 (age 45)
Philadelphia, PA, U.S.
Genres Pop, rock, dance, urban, country, world
Occupation(s) Artist, record producer, songwriter, music publisher, creative executive, music manager, CEO
Instruments Guitar, piano, bass, vocals
Years active 1989-present
Labels EMI, BMG, Sony, Zomba, Universal, Sony Pictures Television, Warner Chappell, A&M Records, DV8 Records, PolyGram
Associated acts P!nk, John Legend, Celine Dion, Take That, Martina McBride, Backstreet Boys, Cher, David Guetta, Kelly Rowland, Jessica Simpson, Teddy Geiger, Ricky Martin, Cher, Anastacia, Art Garfunkel, Tiziano Ferro, Sting, Joss Stone, Robyn, Grover Washington, Jr., Hall & Oates, Seeed, Delta Goodrem, Jennifer Brown, Robi Draco Rosa, Carole King, Deana Carter, Brenda K. Starr, Boyzone, Dana Dawson, Paula Abdul, Pablo Alboran, Cher Lloyd, Ricki Lee Coulter, Platnum, Thomas Helmig, Josh Wink, Paul Van Dyk and Hilary Duff

William “Billy” H. Mann (born December 20, 1968) is an American songwriter, record producer, creative executive, music publisher, and founder/CEO of independent music publishing company Green & Bloom/Topline,[1] as well as chairman of management firm Manncom.[2]

Over a 20-year period, Mann has built his career from street musician to recording artist to entrepreneur and music industry executive. In the process he has written songs and/or produced records for/with an array of artists,[3] including P!nk, John Legend, Celine Dion, Take That, Martina McBride, Backstreet Boys, Cher, David Guetta,[4] Kelly Rowland, Jessica Simpson, Teddy Geiger, Ricky Martin, Anastacia, Art Garfunkel, Tiziano Ferro, Sting, Joss Stone, Robyn, Grover Washington, Jr., Hall & Oates, Seeed, Carole King, Deana Carter, Brenda K. Starr, Chaka Khan, Boyzone, Paula Abdul, Pablo Alborán, Cher Lloyd, Ricki-Lee Coulter, Paul Van Dyk and Hilary Duff.

Since penning his first Top 10 hit in the UK for EMI in 1995 with “3 Is Family” by Dana Dawson,[5] Mann has racked up several Top 40 hits[6] around the world (including several Top 10s and #1s),[7] with cumulative album sales of over 110 million.[8]

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Philadelphia, PA[9] as the youngest of three children.[10] By age 12, Mann had put together several bands with other young local musicians, including such current musicians as Steve Wolf[11] Born to middle class parents, Mann lived with his mother in Philadelphia’s inner city after his parents’ divorce. From early childhood, he began experimenting with songwriting and taught himself guitar, piano, bass, harmonica, baritone horn and flute.[12] By age 12, Mann had put together several bands with other young local musicians, including such current musicians as Steve Wolf,[13] Clayton Sears[14] and Adam Dorn (a.k.a. Mocean Worker).[15]

Mann attended the Philadelphia High School for the Creative & Performing Arts (CAPA)[16] for Vocal Music, alongside members of Boyz II Men, The Roots, Christian McBride and Joey DeFrancesco.

Career[edit]

Artist[edit]

A college graduate by 20, Mann immediately began his professional career as a traveling musician.[17] After stops in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami and London, Mann landed in New York, where a chance encounter[18] with producer Ric Wake, put together by songwriter/performer Gregg Wattenberg, resulted in a recording contract.[19] Wake then introduced Mann to then A&M Records label head, Al Cafaro; Mann was ultimately signed to Wake’s imprint DV8 Records, distributed by A&M.[20]

The deal led to two solo releases: 1996’s Billy Mann[21] and 1998’s Earthbound'.[22] Inspired by the loss of his first wife Rema Hort Mann, to stomach cancer nine months after they were married, Earthbound was co-produced by Mann and David Kershenbaum and featured an appearance by Carole King.

Following the release of Earthbound, Mann relocated to Europe, where he worked as a writer, producer and executive producer for a number of artists/labels, establishing connections with a network of music industry executives that set him on a new career path.

Songwriter[edit]

As a Grammy-nominated songwriter,[23] Mann has penned songs for artists around the globe in multiple formats, languages and genres, including pop, rock, dance, R&B, reggae, house and country.[24] Self-publishing his own catalog, he also has publishing credits with Sony/ATV, Warner/Chappell, Verse and BMG Chrysalis. Mann’s songwriting collaborators have included established names such as Carole King, Robi “Draco” Rosa, Desmond Child, Graham Lyle and Walter Afanasieff, as well as new songwriters like Dave “Boyblue” Schuler, Christian Medice and Sara Bjurman. Of particular note is Mann's long-standing collaboration with P!nk, another Philadelphia native, who was introduced to Mann in 2002 by her then co-manager Craig Logan. They since have co-written such songs as “God Is A DJ,” “Stupid Girls,” “Dear Mr. President,” “Nobody Knows,” “I’m Not Dead,” “Crystal Ball,” “Glitter in the Air,” “Bridge of Light,” “The Truth About Love” and “Beam Me Up.” They have twice been nominated for Grammys, for “Stupid Girls” and “The Truth About Love.”[25]

Record producer[edit]

About.com named Mann one of the Top 10 Producers of 2006.[26] In addition to some of the artists listed above, he has worked in a production capacity with such Grammy-winning producer legends as Peter Asher, Amanda Marshall, David Foster, Kristy Starling, Josh Groban, James Stroud and Jessica Andrews.

Production and writing credits[edit]

Entrepreneur[edit]

In 2001, Mann founded Stealth Entertainment[27] in New York City's garment district. The one-man office and studio grew into a team of a half dozen young executives who went on to develop multi-platinum, award-winning and chart-topping artists, songwriters, producers and mixing engineers like Andy Zulla, Christopher Rojas, Teddy Geiger,[28] Esmee Denters[29] and Pete Wallace, all of whom met Mann at the earliest stages in their careers.

In addition to developing talent, Stealth built successful alliances/partnerships with organizations like Seventeen Magazine,[30] Columbia Records, SonyBMG Special Projects, Target, Levi's and other brands on behalf of the company and its roster. Stealth was acquired as part of Mann's later move to EMI.

As a consultant, Mann has worked with Zomba Group, Sony Music Entertainment, Sony Pictures Television, Warner-Chappell, Lockerz, BMG Chrysalis, Bliss Legal and BMG International. He has also been featured as a guest music commentator on The Today Show[31]

Executive[edit]

In November 2007, Mann joined EMI Music as creative advisor and a member of the operating board.[32] Soon after, he was appointed chief creative officer; in 2008, he was made president of new music a&r international and president of global artist management, overseeing content on all continents.

During his years with the company, Mann helmed the development of some of EMI’s most successful international artists and partnerships, including David Guetta, Pablo Alboran, Bebe, Juan Luis Guerra, Tiziano Ferro, Robyn, Panda, Paty Cantu, Belinda, Wind Up and Movic, among others. Additionally, he helped develop artist management initiatives in several countries (including Spain, Germany, Italy and the United States) in order to expand the way EMI developed talent. Throughout his EMI tenure, Mann also acted as the non-executive chairman for Stealth Entertainment, which in its latter years focused primarily on songwriter/producer management.

During EMI’s most turbulent period, Mann worked under four CEOs in a mere three years, and carried on through each regime change. EMI’s final CEO Roger Faxon announced Mann’s departure from the company in a glowing letter that reflected the impact on the organization.[33]

In January 2011, Mann was named president of creative, BMG North America, overseeing the creative staff in New York, Los Angeles, and Nashville in managing the roster integration of recently acquired companies, and leading efforts to attract, develop, and sign new content.[34]

At the end of 2011, Mann founded Manncom, a boutique management/services company alongside a publishing venture with BMG Chrysalis, Green & Bloom/Topline. The latter seeks to create an independent songwriter community to provide songwriters with a more hands-on publishing experience and strategic partner to navigate the inner workings of the music industry. During its first year, Green & Bloom/Topline achieved multiple Top 10 album debuts around the world, as well as several Top 10 singles.[35] In 2013, BMG extended its investment in Green & Bloom | date=5 November 2007

The Green & Bloom/Topline roster includes Allen Stone, Condola Rashad, Josh Wink, Justin Stanley, Dave “Boyblue” Schuler, Tracklacers, Rob Giles, Dres (Black Sheep), Vassy, Hal Linton and Jason Lehning with copyrights on releases like Macklemore’s The Heist, The Saturdays, Mat Kearney, P!nk, Eric Clapton, Cher and Joe Cocker, among others.

Philanthropy and family[edit]

President Barack Obama greets Jasper Mann and his parents, Billy and Gena Mann, before signing the Combating Autism Reauthorization Act of 2011 in the Oval Office

Mann’s philanthropic involvement includes the development of The Hit Life dedicated to the proposition that the pursuit of a hit life is richer than the pursuit of a hit song alone. He has also spoken at numerous public events. During his tenure at EMI, when devastating earthquakes took place in Haiti and Chile, Mann led more than 50 EMI artists from around the world in an initiative he named "Answer The Call."[36]

As the father of a son with autism, Mann is also a board member of Autism Speaks, member of the Government Policy Committee and co-founder of the Rema Hort Mann Foundation. He and his wife Gena, long-time friends and supporters of President Obama, watched their son receive the first pen from the President in September 2011, when he signed the Combatting Autism Reauthorization Act in the Oval Office.[37]

Mann, his wife and children live in Connecticut.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Thinking Outside of the box: An Interview with Billy Mann". Music Industry Logic. 30 April 2013. 
  2. ^ Prince, Cathryn J (Issue 48). "Billy Mann". Tribeca Magazine Page 166.  Check date values in: |date= (help)
  3. ^ "Advisory Board". SingerUniverse. 
  4. ^ Pichevin, Aymeric (19 October 2009). "Billboard Q&A: EMI's Billy Mann". Billboard. 
  5. ^ "Dana Dawson 3 Is Family". Discogs. 
  6. ^ "Billy Mann". All Music. 
  7. ^ "Billy Mann's Credits". All Music. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  8. ^ "aol". AOL Music. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  9. ^ Floyd, John (25 April 1996). "Soul on Nice". Miami New Times. 
  10. ^ Moore, Jayne. "Hit Writer/Producer Billy Mann Discusses His Hits With Pink, Jessica Simpson And Other Artists". Songwriter Universe. 
  11. ^ "Wolf". Wolfedelic. 
  12. ^ Moore, Jayne. "Hit Writer/Producer Billy Mann Discusses His Hits With Pink, Jessica Simpson And Other Artists". Songwriter Universe. 
  13. ^ "Wolf". Wolfedelic. 
  14. ^ "Musicians". Dream Quest Records. 
  15. ^ Holzmeier, Douglas E (14 June 2011). You Are God's Best Idea:Divine Acceptations and Living the Undeniable Life. Bloomington, IN: Balboa Press. p. 53. 
  16. ^ Homan, Joyce (6 October 2009). "Playlist Rewind: Pink at the University of the Arts and the Wachovia Center". Phillyist. 
  17. ^ Baker, Greg (15 January 1992). "The Voice of Mann". Miami New Times. 
  18. ^ Amorosi, A.D. (9 May 1996). "Ramblin' Mann". Philadelphia City Paper. 
  19. ^ Ruggieri, Melissa (16 May 1996). "Risk-taking Pays Off For Billy Mann". Sun-Sentinel. 
  20. ^ "DV8 Entertainment History". On A&M Records. 
  21. ^ "amazon". Amazon.com. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  22. ^ "amazon". Amazon. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  23. ^ "SESAC Congratulates our GRAMMY nominees!". SESAC. 6 December 2012. 
  24. ^ Zimmerman, Kevin. "Billy Mann Speaks Out". SESAC. 
  25. ^ Chinen, Nate (March 24, 2013). "Something in the Air? It Must Be the Headliner Pink at Madison Square Garden". The New York Times. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  26. ^ Lamb, Bill. "Top 10 Pop Music Producers 2006". About.com. Retrieved 27 February 2013. 
  27. ^ "Executive Turntable". Billboard. 24 November 2007. 
  28. ^ Gardner, Elysa (3 April 2006). "C'mon, get happy: TV talent search was Geiger's big break". USA Today. 
  29. ^ Sobehart, Nadia (27 August 2007). "Internet welcomes newcomers to Hollywood". Student Life Washington University. 
  30. ^ "Seventeen Magazine and SONY BMG Music Entertainment Release CD Compilation Inspired by Popular Indie Beat Column". Businesswire. 10 April 2006. 
  31. ^ Morrison, Marty (20 November 2003). "Decision day for 'Superstar'". The Free-Lance Star. 
  32. ^ White, Dominic (7 November 2007). "EMI hires Billy Mann to balance board". The Telegraph. 
  33. ^ Comet Staff (7 September 2010). "EMI Restructures, Again". The Comet. 
  34. ^ Halperin, Shirley (6 January 2011). "Billy Mann Named President of Creative at BMG North America". The Hollywood Reporter. 
  35. ^ "EMI appoints Mike Clasper and Billy Mann to investor board". 
  36. ^ "emimusic". EMI Music. Retrieved 14 April 2013. 
  37. ^ "2011: A Year of Advocacy Accomplishments". Autism Speaks Official Blog. 1 December 2011. Retrieved 27 February 2013. 

External links[edit]