10 Questions with ... Chad Schultz
December 4, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I started with a company in Scottsdale, AZ with Maria Brunner called Insight Mgmt in 1993 as Director of Marketing & Promotions, and we did tour marketing and promotions for bands and brands along with working with State Fairs on promoting their concerts, etc. It was a great learning experience.
I was offered a job at Mercury Nashville at the end of 1995 and moved to Nashville to do Secondary (Gavin) promotion for them in January of '96. September that year, my bosses Larry Hughes & Norbert Nix, promoted me and moved me to TX to take over the Southwest region.
In 2003, John Grady & Larry Pareigis hired me at Epic / Columbia Records with Sony/BMG and I was there until I left in 2006 to partner on a tech startup with Chris Stacey called Hurricane Interactive Promotions. That company was acquired by a Silicon Valley Startup called Mozes, Inc and we all went to work with them at their Nashville office. I was Director of Business Development and Client Services for them for about three years until I came over to Warner Music Nashville in June of 2010, once again, working with Chris Stacey.
1) Hey Chad congrats on your new title as National Director Radio Promotion & Interactive Marketing-can you give us a snapshot of what you'll be doing in this exciting new role?
As you know, our business model has changed drastically over the past several years, and Warner Music Nashville is really ahead of the curve in new model thinking. My job will be to further that thinking as it pertains to radio promotion. I'll be seeking out, and maximizing, new channels for exposure for both the FM signal and beyond. We're trying to be very proactive with our radio partners in leveraging all of their promotional assets, including web, mobile, social and beyond.
2) How will you be assisting your promotions department in this position?
I'll be working hand in hand with both promotion teams, WMN and W.A.R, as a "bridge" between our amazing new media department, which leads the way in innovative ideas for our artists, and our entire promotion department.
3) Congratulations on a great year-you guys introduced a lot of new music and new artists-what do you take away from the year as the biggest accomplishments?
I am most proud of the music we delivered to radio. Our A&R department has delivered great country music that is distinct and has passion and heart. On the W.A.R. team, both Frankie Ballard and Brett Eldredge stood out amongst the new acts out there as powerful songwriters and performers, and Gloriana delivered their best album to date. Their new single, "(Kissed You) Good Night" is going to explode next year.
The WMN team had the JaneDear girls come out strong and introduced country radio to The Dirt Drifters and Hunter Hayes. This musical prodigy's songwriting and musicianship has broken down doors faster than any debut act this year with his first single breaking into the Top 20 and nearing Top 15 before the break. If you haven't caught one of his sold out club dates then make sure to catch him opening for Rascal Flatts next year!
4) It's tough breaking new music out there-is it more challenging than it has ever been? And does great music still find a way to break through?
I think it is more challenging than it's ever been, and both our industries (radio and records) are also stretched thinner than we've ever been before. I'd like to think great music still breaks through, and sometimes it does, but sometimes it can fall victim to bad timing of release if a bunch of superstars release singles around the same time, or if you don't get consensus from enough reporting stations soon enough to build momentum quickly.
5) Knowing you personally, I know that you have a personal investment and attachment in the music and the artists-it must be really hard seeing something great slip through the cracks isn't it?
Yes. I think that's the hardest part of all of it, when you get personally invested in an artist, their vision, and their music, and then for whatever reason, it doesn't break through. It especially hurts when a bunch of stations or people tell you after the record goes away that it was a hit.
6) What exciting things from Warner Music Nashville are you excited about for 2012?
I'm especially excited about our new artists like The Farm, Gloriana, Hunter Hayes and Jana Kramer, to name a few and the announcement of Jimmy Fallon signing to our comedy roster under Peter Strickland, Sr. Vice President of Brand Management & Sales. I am also excited to work new Faith Hill music and watch the continued success our WMN team will have with Blake. 2012 is going to be an amazing year here at Warner Music Nashville, I promise.
7) You just moved into a new home correct? Congrats! What do you love most about living in Music City?
Thanks Jim. I actually love the people here - totally fit the stereotype of the "friendly South", but in general, I think Nashville is a very "livable" city. It's easy to get around, aesthetically it's gorgeous, the climate is milder than TX, it offers a lot of activities, from hiking and biking to concerts and a great, vibrant music scene - and some very "Nashville" events like the "Full Moon Picking Parties" at Percy Warner, or "Bluebird on the Mountain's" Guitar pulls, etc. I've just always felt at home here.
8) What do you love doing here in Nashville on rare days off?
What are days off? :) It depends on the time of year, but if the weather is good, I like hanging out with friends at a pool, going to the lake or river and out on a boat, playing golf (although I haven't played much the past few years) or tennis (which you and I have talked about now for over a year), and I imagine I'll be spending more time doing house stuff now since I bought one with a yard.
9) During your career you spent 8-years with Mercury Records, and then moved on to Sony, and then Mozes as Director of Business Development and Client Services. Can you explain the business model at Mozes and how that plays into what you are doing now?
I was at Sony for about three years before we did Hurricane and Mozes. It's interesting because the Mozes business model has changed and evolved over the past several years. My time there was exciting because we were working on connecting the top artists, bands and brands to their fans and consumers at the point of inspiration, with a heavy focus on live event activation on the mobile device. As I've transitioned back into the label side, we still find it very relevant to connect our acts with their fans in the best ways possible - including their mobile phones.
10) Who have some of your mentors been through your career and why?
I've had a lot of people I've looked up to and learned from so far in my career, and I'm sure I'll have a lot more, but some people who have been very important to me have been Larry Hughes, who hired me at Mercury records for my first label job, Luke Lewis at UMG, John Grady, who was a boss and mentor for me at two different labels, Norbert Nix, who was a boss and is still a good friend, Chris Stacey, who I've worked with for many years now at three different companies, and I'm enjoying learning from John Esposito, President & Chairman of WMN, now as well. I've been lucky to work with a lot of great people and have been able to learn a lot from all of them. I hope to continue doing that for the rest of my career too.
1) What city and what restaurant is your favorite place for a great dinner?
Austin TX - Eddie Vee's Downtown
2) What's playing on 'repeat' in your iPod these days?
I've got some "Good Tunes" playlists I've made that have everything from Zac Brown to Keith Urban to Frankie Ballard to Gloriana to U2 to Jay Z.
3) What gadget of the 21st century could you not live without and why?
My smart phone because it's become ubiquitous for us now and as sad as it is to say, I rely on it too much for everything - both personally and professionally.