Got Distribution? TX, SF Programs

Got Distribution? TX, SF Programs


Find out how you can use SoundScan and other tools, how to identify the best distributors for your genre of music, how to approach them, and how to get the best deal and achieve maximum exposure for your product.


For those who want to get and make the most of independent distribution, NARIP presents this program to help understand the process.

You will learn low-cost (or no-cost) ways to get independent record distribution, the best ways to work with a network of independents and how to harness everyone to work as a team. Also, you?ll learn about sales arrangements, territories, and payment terms ? everything you need to achieve sales success.

  • What it is & how it works
  • Who needs it & when
  • How to get it & what it costs
  • Types of distributors
  • How to work with distributors for maximum profits
  • How to fan the flames and create demand for your product
  • Distributed vs. in-house labels
  • Distribution agreements: fees, terms and important considerations
  • How to get paid

PROGRAM DATES: August 19, 2010 in Houston, August 11, 2010 in San Francisco II , June 4, 2009 in in San Francisco.
COMBINED PROGRAM TIME: 6 hours, 33 minutes, 41 seconds (6:33:41)
HANDOUTS: 156 pages total including sample distribution agreement plus 89-page transcript of Maximum Music Distribution (note that some articles are duplicated in these handouts) and the following items:

  • 89-page program transcript of San Francisco Maximum Music Marketing program
  • Digital Distribution Deal Checklists courtesy of Tim Mitchell – Jennifer Burke Sylva, Esq., and Jason Kadlec
  • Glossary of Terms
  • How To Distribute Music Via Mobile by Raj Singh
  • How To Make The Most of Digital Distribution by Kurt Kunselman
  • How To Maximize Digital Distribution by IRIS Distribution staff
  • Important Deal Points in a Distribution Agreement
  • Important Metadata Categories courtesy of Steven Corn
  • Marketing Reading List courtesy of Jason Feinberg
  • Recipe for Music Distribution Success in 2009 & Beyond by Steffen Franz
  • Recommended Reading & Resources
  • Sample Distribution Agreement
  • Submission Checklist
  • The Distribution Players courtesy of Clay Pasternack, updated by Ric Curtice


Bullivant Houser Bailey PC
Chameleon Music
Independent Distribution Collective
Raj Singh’s Blog

Steffen Franz aka Stand Out Selector

Stand Out Selector, aka Steffen Franz, combines the best of art and business with his eclectic background. With major changes in the modern music industry, independent artists and labels seek new ways to get their music out. Steffen noticed these issues as he himself has faced distribution challenges, too. He launched Independent Distribution Collective in 2004 and since then has grown the company from 9 labels to over 250 labels with close to 300 releases in less than 5 years. In addition to launching a physical distribution company, which now includes both digital, film and DVD distribution, SOS has also developed services like “InstantDistro” a turnkey marketing and promotion service, and “A La Carte Management” which helps advance the independent music community and educate developing artists.

A dancehall innovator, a DJ / producer / remixer and the owner of PSM Recordings, he has been bringing his conscious reggae vibes to throngs of people from New York to the Hawaiian Islands (and San Francisco in between) for almost 2 decades. A New York City native, SOS moved to Maui in 1991 where he broke the freshest dancehall tracks to scores of locals as well as tourists from around the globe at Studio 505, a Stephen Stills? nightclub. At that time he also managed and produced Marty Dread & Culture Shock, the most popular reggae band in the islands.

1993 brought him to San Francisco to play venues like Miss Pearl’s Jam House, Kennel Club and others. Together with former partner Stefan G. (video/multimedia specialist), a brand new concept in global sound systems was formed: Positive Sound Massive. PSM features an array of international vocalists, rappers, toasters and musicians, including rapper Wookie J., whom SOS imported from Maui.

In the late 1990s, SOS DJ-ed at hundreds of shows throughout California, Nevada, Washington, New York, Australia and New Zealand where he opened for the Beastie Boys “Hello Nasty” World Tour. He has produced dozens of multi-artist stage shows and the Nicodemus “Dancehall Giant Tour,” as well as the Rocker-T “If Yu Luv Luv, Show Ya Luv” national US tour featuring Shinehead and Sleepy Wonder. He has remixed tracks for artists such as: Barrington Levy “Work” (MCA), Capleton “Wings of the Morning” (DefJam/RAL), Beenie Man “Tear off Mi Garment” (Island JA); and produced tracks for artists Nicodemus, Shinehead, Ras Michael, Barrington Levy, Rocker-T, Jamalski, Wookie J., Karney, DJ Collage, Poetz4Peace, and SF local hip hop group New Dealers. SOS worked as Reggae Buyer for Rough Trade Records in San Francisco, and as Reggae Editor for American Music Press, a Bay-Area music monthly. From 1994 through 1998, Steffen was the Production Manager for the Paradise Lounge and Transmission Theater in San Francisco and still found time to write and review for independent publications. He has tour managed Mix Master Mike, traveling the globe on both of Mike’s solo tours and with the Beastie Boys. SOS also fronts an alternative rock group Crocodile Tears, plays bass in a Stoner Rock band called Not For Not, and is a member of “biL” – a dancehall, surf, hip hop, who-knows-what else conglomeration of excellence.

SOS is the founder of Positive Sound Management. PSManagement represents Rocker-T, Poetz4Peace, Haji Mike, Ian Collins and Karney, exclusively, and consults a number of other established and developing artists. Recent studio works include production for over a dozen artists and bands. Production and Engineering credits include Nuffsed, Rastrillos, Haji Mike, Jahson Ites and new releases from Essential I and a compilation which includes music from Jahson Ites, Lutan Fyah, Essential I, Chezidek, Ms Triniti, Adrian Xavier, Halfpint with Ishi Dube, Ras Attitude, Promoe, Huckleberry, Prezident Brown, Norrisman with Jah Sun, Wisdom, Oren B Scripture, Haji Mike and Rocker T for Sick Donkey Records. Steffen teaches Music Business 101, 110, 301 and 310 @ Pyramind in San Francisco.

Kurt Kunselman, Director of Digital Distribution / Business Development, Independent Distribution Collective

Kurt Kunselman started his own San Francisco-based Internet music label in 1999. Before that, he played in several San Francisco bands under the name ?Kutre?. When an Interscope A&R rep approached him about signing one of his bands and this fell through, it sparked him to start his own label: Chameleon Music. His label would reflect where he saw popular tastes going due with expanded music availability via the Internet, and encompass many genres. He was an early adopter of and Liquid Audio technologies and services for Chameleon artists.

In 1999, Kurt completed an MBA in International Business and Consulting in Italy while maintaining Chameleon?s Web site. On his return to the U.S., Napster had taken over and people weren?t buying songs online. Chameleon survived through Kurt?s new experiences with managing the band Invisible Green and street promotion savvy. During this time, he founded a 501(c)(3) music charity called Chameleon Music Foundation to help unsigned musicians in the Bay Area. CMF has since started Unsigned (local showcases), AMP3 (Bay Area Music Networking Organization) and Peanut Butter and Jam Music Sessions for Kids (empowering young people 6-17 with music business knowledge). With digital music on the upswing in 2003 and 2004, Kurt got back to Internet music distribution where he helps artists get distribution through iTunes, ringtones, mobile phone downloads other technological advantages indie artists can use. In 2006 Chameleon acquired part ownership of IDC (Independent Distribution Collective), a physical distribution company. With this partnership, principals Steffen Franz and Kurt have elevated the careers of emerging and established artists by allowing them to release, market and distribute their music on their own terms. Kurt has worked with Steffen to develop the IDCLicensing (licensing), IDCDigital (digital distribution and digital asset management), Instant Distro (publicity, promotion and marketing), and they are working on IDCFilm (indie film distribution, digital and physical).

Arne Lucas, Director of Mobile Marketing, INgrooves

Arne has spent over half his life in the music industry. His first experience was in the early ?90s as an artist with the San Francisco-based Soul / R&B vocal group IF. During this time he realized he felt more comfortable behind the scenes, and went on to perfect his skills as a recording engineer. By the mid ?90s he was chief recording engineer for a full service recording studio located in San Francisco?s Mission District and was working as an executive assistant to the President of a local Bay Area label – Classified Records – which was picked up by Tommy Boy in the late ?90s. At the time, the Bay Area music scene was thriving but Arne felt that there was more to accomplish. By now he excelled at the label, getting his hands into everything from A&R duties, to engineering, physical retail distribution and licensing. He was soon hired on full time and thrived at the label. Arne took to the business of music, expanding his knowledge of publishing, licensing and contract negotiations. He moved on to assist in a new music venture for the New York City start-up A Media, which focused on the Asian American entertainment industry.

He was then approached a few years later by his mentor at Classified to take on a Music Supervisor position for 360 Media Group. 360 Media?s flagship product was a DVD series called 360 Video Magazine, a quarterly video magazine that specialized in the import car scene, extreme sports, music and entertainment. Its first mainstream release ?Hard Drive? was certified gold and distributed at major retail chains such as Best Buy, Wal-Mart and Target as well as hundreds of smaller retail stores worldwide. After a number of years and over 20 releases under his belt at 360, the DVD market was on a decline so Arne moved into a new career.

In 2003, he accepted a Product Manager position with Hudson Entertainment Inc. who had just acquired the license to The Source Magazine. This was his first experience in the wireless entertainment industry and he hasn?t looked back since. He was integral to bringing what many say was the ?Bible of Hip Hop? for over 20 years ? The Source Magazine ? to mobile. The Source Mobile Channel was one of the only ringtone applications on deck that strictly distributed Hip-Hop/Urban ringtones – this was during the lucrative ?polyphonic? era of the ringtone and well before carrier white label mastertone stores such as the ones currently available on Verizon, Sprint, AT&T etc. He eventually moved to a more video game-centric position in mobile as an Account Manager with Namco Networks ? working directly with carriers to launch the classic game catalog for mobile from the legendary video game giant. It was here where he learned the intricacies of the carrier world. After close to 2 years peddling mobile video games he decided to get back into the music business and is currently the Director of Mobile Marketing for INgrooves where he oversees a majority of the mobile business for the digital label.

Raj Singh, Mobile Consulting / Strategy / Product Planning / Definition Expert

Raj Singh is a mobile industry veteran who has worked in all aspects of mobile over the past 10 years. Currently, Raj is Vice President of Business Development for Skyfire, a mobile browser that supports the full Web including Flash 8,9, Javascript and Quicktime. Most recently, Raj consulted Dell Mobile and assisted with their global SMS and WAP strategy. Prior to Dell, Raj co-founded venture-funded Veeker, NBC?s mobile video citizen journalism service and boot-strapped ToneThis, CNET?s top ringtone creation product. Raj has also worked in product management, engineering, strategy and consulting roles for Kodak Mobile, Cellmania, MobiTV, PlayPhone, Tellme, Hungama Mobile and Antenna Software. Raj?s personal projects include GameChalk, an SMS multi-player game service and Pubwalk, an LBS bar-hopping service. Raj is a mobile advisor to a number of companies including ChuckD Mobile, Movoxx, Oomble, Klicksports, Muse, Buzzd, Yojo Mobile, Textopoly and several VCs within the valley.

Raj is a regular mobile writer and speaker including formal and guest-blogging for GotoMobile, O?Reilly Emerging Telephony and VisionMobile. Raj has made contributions to a number of mobile user and expert groups including the JCP, MMA and the Bluetooth SIG. For more information, please see raj at rajansingh dot com


In San Francisco II


Ric Curtice, Sales, Marketing & Distribution Executive, Prime Time Entertainment

Ric Curtice has worked in the music business his entire career. He began working for the Marketing Department at MCA Records, and here is where he contributed to the development of successful careers for Fine Young Cannibals, Tom Petty, Bobby Brown, Coolio, Mary J. Blige, Jimmy Buffett, Elton John, Vince Gill and others. MCA?s parent company then bought Geffen Records, and Ric entered the Product Development Department for the company, where they had a successful string of multi-platinum sellers including Beck, Weezer, Guns n Roses, Nirvana, Hole, Counting Crows, Jackyl and others. As the industry continued its merging ways, Interscope Records was acquired by Universal where Ric continued successful campaigns to help define the careers of No Doubt, Marilyn Manson, NIN, Dr. Dre Bush and others. A stint at Independent label TVT Records continued his success at developing the careers of Sevendust, Andy Partridge, Pit Bull, Lil John, and others. Ric currently runs a successful independent music marketing and sales consulting business in the San Francisco Bay Area which includes clients Rocket Science Inc., Burnside Distribution Corporation, Booklines inc., Sumthing Distribution, Madacy Corporation, Prime Time Entertainment, and Red Hot Promotions, as well as others working with Heritage, New and Developing artists including Celldweller, Blind Pilot, Sugar Minott, Insolance, Chumbawamba, Karla Bonoff, Irma Thomas, Y & T, Sir Mixx a lot, Nile Rodgers, Ivan Neville, Sherri Austin, Steve Forbert, Dr.Dog, Radio Head, Cold War Kids, King Khan, Mathew Sweet among many others. In addition, Ric has recently been managing the careers of Zakiya Hooker, Michael Lee Firkins, Megan Slankard and George Komsky.

Humberto Carmona, Manager of Business Development, IODA Alliance

Since joining IODA in 2006, Humberto has spearheaded IODA’s business endeavors in Latin America. In addition to signing key Mexican label clients such as Noiselab and Nuevos Ricos, he has negotiated and executed deals with dozens of IODA’s retail partners, notably with top regional providers like Telefonica and iMusica. A native of Mexico City, Humberto is also a founding partner in the label Arts&Crafts Mexico, and manager of the bands Chikita Violenta, Rey Pila and Bam Bam.

Eric Ferraro, Esq., Music & Digital Media Attorney, Bullivant Houser & Bailey PC


Eric Ferraro is a capital shareholder in the corporate and intellectual property practice groups of Bullivant, Houser & Bailey PC. He concentrates his practice on the representation of private and public emerging and growth companies in the technology and digital media sectors, and the investors and financial services firms that focus on those industries. With over 16 years of practical legal and business experience in private practice, as in-house counsel, and as a technology company founder and investor, Eric brings an integrated counseling approach to his clients, balancing legal protection and corporate best practices with business, technical, investment and strategic considerations.

As a founder of IRIS Distribution, a digital media services company, Eric has particular expertise in digital media law and is the Chair of the firm’s Social Media and Gaming practice. His media and technology clients include enterprise software and mobile developers, social media and gaming companies, Internet businesses, music and entertainment companies, and digital creative agencies. Eric advises his digital media clients on data security, online privacy, SaaS issues, content licensing, publishing and syndication, copyright and royalty administration, and regulatory issues relating to e-commerce, online advertising and Internet law under the DMCA, FTC Act and CAN-SPAM.

Eric counsels his clients in connection with entity formation and founder arrangements, corporate governance, seed and venture capital financing, employment and equity compensation matters, intellectual property protection, technology licensing and product distribution, mergers and acquisitions, public offerings and SEC reporting and compliance. Eric also has significant experience in executive compensation transactions, often representing CEOs and executive teams in connection with high-value M&A transactions.

In Digital Media, Internet and Entertainment, Eric has represented a leading digital media distributor in content licensing deals with Amazon, Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo!, Sony, Rhapsody, Verizon, T-Mobile and other global media companies; advised a video game developer in publishing and development agreements with MTV Networks, Atari and other top entertainment brands; represented digital marketing agency in consumer marketing campaigns for Scion, PG&E and Electrolux; and represented record label in sync licensing agreement with HBO for Entourage, among others.

Eric has been recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyer on multiple occasions by Law & Politics magazine. He is also an advisor to Founders Space. A strong supporter of the arts, Eric is actively involved in the community and with various charitable organizations. He serves as general counsel and sits on the board of directors of Artists for Literacy and is a panel attorney for California Lawyers for the Arts.

Tamra Engle, Executive Director of NARIP San Francisco

Tamra Engle is a social entrepreneur and founder of GuitarTam Music that offers business and promotional consultation for artists and bands to help them succeed in the evolving music and entertainment industries. She helps clients to develop strategic marketing and promotion plans, and offers performance coaching. Blending 25 years of business development expertise in organizations of all sizes and sectors from start-ups to Fortune 15 organizations, Tamra is developing community programs to provide music education programs for school-aged children and a national program to end violence against women. She is also a performing singer-songwriter whose recent album was on the final nominating ballot for the 2008 Grammys in the Best Contemporary Folk Album category. Tamra began her entertainment career as a studio musician In Los Angeles, has toured the country tirelessly and enjoyed placement of her songs on television and nationally aired commercials. Contact her at tamra AT narip DOT com.


In Houston


John Fetto, Founder, J Distribution

John Fetto got his start in the music business in 1971 and became a sales rep for J L Marsh (acquired by Pickwick) where he called on retail locations for commercial music. He moved to Musical Isle (acquired by Lieberman) where he serviced retail locations and worked his way up to VP of Sales, personally handling the Walmart account for over 5 years. He then joined Sight & Sound in video distribution as director of national accounts and then moved to Best Buy as a regional buyer for
music. In 2007 Fetto formed J Distribution which specializes in helping clients get carried and placed in the 1000+ Best Buys around the country.

Roxell Richards, Esq., Entertainment Attorney

Entertainment attorney Roxell Richards has practiced in the music industry for over a decade. She recently served as the sole entertainment attorney at Deep Distribution Music Group in Houston, TX where she worked closely with multi-platinum artists Lil Flip, Scarface, the Ying Yang Twins, and Grammy-nominated producer Mannie Fresh, inking several lucrative deals on Deep?s behalf. Bar certified in Texas and California, Ms. Richards opened her own firm in 2004 with offices in Houston and Los Angeles. The firm?s focus is music and film distribution, administration and licensing. She is passionate about educating people about entertainment law, and is a frequent guest speaker at conference nationwide, including the Core DJ?s Texas Urban Music Summit II and the All Access Music Conference in Miami. She will appear at NXNW, and international film and music festival in Toronto, in June 2010.

Nichelle Poindexter, Senior VP, Music World Entertainment’s Music World Gospel division

Nichelle Poindexter is the Sr. Vice President of Music World Entertainment?s gospel music division Music World Gospel. The label division has established music distribution relationships with Sony Music, Geffen Interscope Records and Fontana Universal. Music World Music has a popular music division, country, rock and gospel label. The label marked recent success with a #2 album debut by rising gospel recording artist Brian Courtney Wilson. She is a graduate of the University of Texas Arlington. With over 15 years as a creative executive in the music business working at Warner Brothers Music and Universal she conceived and executed highly successful marketing campaigns with superstar artists such as Jay Z, Patti LaBelle, Ludacris and Mariah Carey.

Armando Sanchez, President, South Central Music Source, LLC (dba South Central Music)

Armando Sanchez is president of South Central Music Source, LLC (dba South Central Music). Established in 2003 in Houston, South Central Music provides physical distribution for independent Latin music artists and labels plus a growing general-market catalog of roots / Americana. Armando has 21 years experience in sales and distribution of Latin music, including nine years with Sony Music. Among label / artist partners are: Urbana Records (La Mafia, Los Palominos); DLG Music (David Lee Garzy y Los Musicales); Power House Records (Avizo); Joslin Records (Jaime y Los Chamacos); AMMX (Gary Hobbs & The Hometown Boys); Guzman Fox Records (Joel Guzman & Sarah Fox); Los Lobos ; Los Tex-Maniacs; Flaco Jimenez; Gurf Morlix; Randy Weeks; Stag Records (Jesse Dayton & Mike Stinson); VMG (Vallejo); TMG (Emory Quinn).

Barry Coffing, NARIP Houston Executive Director, Founder

Mr. Coffing is CEO and Founder of and Uprising Entertainment. A 20-year industry veteran who has toured the world and has major credits to his name, Barry is an Emmy-nominated composer and was signed to Warner Bros. Records in the 1990s. He has toured extensively to support his hit songs that have charted around the world, including the #1 “I’ll Come Back To You.” He won Best Producer of the year at the Beverly Hills Film Festival in 2003, and has written and produced over 200 songs in film and TV including #1 hits and gold-selling soundtracks. He has worked with almost every major film company and television network. His knowledge of both sides of the licensing equation led him to create which has been used to find music for projects including Dexter, Ugly Betty, Burn Notice, Blonde Ambition, Lost, Love Kill, License to Wed, Swing Vote, Real Girl, Assassination of a High School President, Sexual Healing, Invincible, The Unit, Direct Contact and others. Barry has lectured on the music business at USC, Vanderbilt and The University of Houston. With his professional relationships, especially at major film companies and TV networks on both coasts, and a strong background in the business as an executive and successful composer / artist, Mr. Coffing is uniquely positioned to help NARIP members identify opportunities in film and television, and to create and sustain long-term careers in the music business today.

Program music courtesy of The G-Man (Golosio Music Publishing, BMI)



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