Steve Gottlieb is an American entrepreneur and music executive. He is founder and CEO of Shindig, a platform for large scale online video chat events. Prior to Shindig, Gottlieb founded the independent record label TVT Records and its publishing arm TVT Music, discovered the recording artists Nine Inch Nails, Pitbull, Sevendust, and Ja Rule, produced the "Television's Greatest Hits" series, helped to found the independent music organization A2IM, and served on the boards of Musicmatch (sold to Yahoo! in 2008), Napster, and Tune Up Media.
Gottlieb was selected in 1996 as one of the "40 Under Forty", a listing of leading New York executives, by Crain's New York Business. In 2001, he was featured in a commercial for Credit Suisse during the Super Bowl, where he was cited as a successful and visionary media/technology entrepreneur. Later in the year, he appeared as a witness before the Senate Judiciary Committee at a hearing titled "Online Entertainment And Copyright Law: Coming Soon To A Digital Device Near You".
In 2005, he was named to the Hip Hop Power 30 by The Source magazine. In the same year, he delivered the keynote address at the In The City Urban Music Summit, which is the UK's top international music convention and Europe's largest city-based music festival.
Shindig allows users to see and be seen by participants in an online event. The participants can move freely through a virtual space and are able to engage in private video chats with other participants of their choosing. Featured speakers can address all of the participants as a group from a stage as well as share the stage with participants who may have a question or comment about the speaker's presentation.
Shindig launched a beta release of its platform for video chat book tours in May 2012. By August of the same year, the company had hosted over 150 events for such best-selling authors as A.J. Jacobs, Dan Ariely, Joel Stein, Scott Sigler, and James Howard Kunstler.
Beginning in September 2012, Shindig targeted music events, online nightclubs, magazine subscriber events, and interactive classroom applications as uses for its video chat platform technology.
Notable personalities and entities who've used Shindig include Bill Gates, TEDx, Guy Kawasaki, Michael Pollan, Edward Jay Epstein, Carla Hall, Big Daddy Kane, A.J. Jacobs, Kevin Kelly, Dan Ariely, and Jackson "Cat Daddy" Galaxy.
Television's Greatest Hits
In 1986, Gottlieb produced Television's Greatest Hits, which he released on his own label Tee Vee Toons. The double album featured a collection of 65 themes from hit TV shows of the 1950s and 1960s in their original arrangements, production styles, and lengths, including The Flintstones, I Love Lucy, Star Trek, Hawaii Five-0, Bonanza, and Batman.
Until the release of Television's Greatest Hits, theme songs (if released to the public as commercial songs) were typically extended from their succinct broadcast versions into 3 to 5 minute versions with additional music and other flourishes. The need to re-record and reproduce the themes, which weren't originally intended to exist in longer form, required new arrangements that were quite different from the familiar abbreviated versions that were heard and enjoyed by tens of millions of viewers each week.
Gottlieb recognized the appeal that these songs had in their organic shortened incarnations. He understood that they represented a variety of American folk culture that was beloved by, and had a deep emotional connection with, millions of consumers the world over. With his belief that t.v. theme music in its original form was ready to be enjoyed and appreciated by consumers, Gottlieb revealed a significant a previously untapped demand for the genre with the release of Television's Greatest Hits.
In order to bring Television’s Greatest Hits to the marketplace, Gottlieb employed a unique business strategy: he bypassed both major label distributors and independent distributors, and in the process, created what became one of the world's most successful self-distributed record labels. With its own proprietary distribution network, Television's Greatest Hits became one of the highest charting and biggest selling independent label releases of 1985. It was available in retail outlets across America—including all major chain stores—and was sold directly to consumers via t.v. commercials and mail order. The San Francisco Chronicle called the double album "the most fun you can have with your pants on", and The New York Times said that it was one of the most innovative business ideas of 1985. Over the next 20 years, a series of 12 volumes of Television's Greatest Hits were released, chronicling the history of the TV theme genre from its beginnings in the 1950s through the early 21st century.
Gottlieb decided to leverage the distribution network that he had developed with "Television's Greatest Hits" by signing artists and building his label, which he renamed TVT Records. TVT would ultimately grow into one of the most successful independent labels in U.S. history, and was named independent label of the year by Billboard Magazine and Soundscan for 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, and 2005.
In its 25 years of operation, TVT released over 25 gold, platinum, or multi-platinum albums. Gottlieb discovered and oversaw the development of Nine Inch Nails (including the band's triple platinum debut album "Pretty Hate Machine"), Sevendust, Ja Rule, Pitbull, the Ying Yang Twins, and Lil Jon. He also marketed, distributed, released, and oversaw the production of albums by Snoop Dogg, Gil Scott-Heron, XTC, KMFDM, and Jimmy Page and the Black Crowes, as well as the first U.S. releases of Underworld, Aphex Twin, and The KLF.
In the early 2000s, Gottlieb sought to place TVT at the forefront of the digital music revolution when he offered its library as free downloads and provided its repertoire to the leading digital music retailers, including Rhapsody, Liquid Audio, and Napster.
Under Gottlieb's direction, TVT Music Publishing was begun in 1990. The goal of the company was to sign and develop the talents of new songwriters and place their compositions with viable artists and labels for release.
TVT Music Publishing's roster of writers wrote or co-wrote such hits as Usher's "Yeah!", 50 Cent's "Candy Shop", Chris Brown's "Run It", and Lil Jon's "Get Low". Other artists who have recorded songs from TVT Music Publishing's catalog include Tom Jones, Christina Aguilera, Justin Timberlake, Ricky Martin, Beyoncé, Pink, Ludacris, Johnny Cash, Mariah Carey, Fat Joe, Lil' Kim, Toni Braxton, Ja Rule, Janet Jackson, John Legend, Dr. Dre, and the Ying Yang Twins.
Independent music and digital music
In 2000, assembled a team of leading independent label executives to establish a body that would represent the interests of independent music labels.
In 2001, Gottlieb appeared as a witness—along with Don Henley, Alanis Morissette, Jack Valenti, Richard Parsons, and other noted entertainment industry figures—before the Senate Judiciary Committee at a hearing entitled "Online Entertainment And Copyright Law: Coming Soon To A Digital Device Near You". He spoke about independent labels and changes in the music business resulting from the digital music revolution.
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- Gottlieb, Steve. "The In The City 2005 Urban Music Summit Keynote (October 1, 2005)". Archive.org Community Audio. Retrieved September 15, 2012.
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- Davidson, Duncan. "TEDx Turns Four". Retrieved May 16, 2013.
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- Hall, Carla. "Live Video Chat on Shindig". Retrieved May 16, 2013.
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- Gottlieb, Steve. "Lessons for Book Publishing From the Music Industry's Digital Street Fight". Digital Book World. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
- "Kevin Kelly Presents: The Silver Cord". 100% Solutions. Buckminster Fuller Institute. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
- Ariely, Dan. "Discuss The Honest Truth with me on Shindig: August 28th at 6 pm". Dan Ariely. Retrieved May 16, 2013.
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