THESE MIAMI MUSIC INDUSTRY POWER PLAYERS ARE HELPING MAKE HISTORY THROUGH MUSIC. FROM PUTTING ON MASSIVE FESTIVALS TO MANAGING SOME OF THE LATEST AND GREATEST ARTISTS IN THE WORLD, WE CHAT WITH THE MOVERS AND SHAKERS WHO REFLECT ON CAREER HIGHLIGHTS, WHOM THEY DRAW INSPIRATION FROM, LESSONS LEARNED AND WHAT ADVICE THEY CAN IMPART TO US.
MYLES SHEAR JOHANNES LOVUND
TITLE: CEO & CO-FOUNDER, PALM TREE MANAGEMENT & PALM TREE RECORDS
Myles Shear (@managermyles) is credited with putting Kygo on the map when he discovered him in 2012 on SoundCloud. Shear now serves as the CEO and co-founder of Palm Tree Management and Palm Tree Records. Under Shear’s management, Kygo has received dozens of multiplatinum certifications, garnered more than 20 billion streams and even became the first artist to reach 1 billion streams on Spotify.
Favorite career memory thus far: Selling out Kygo’s show at the Barclays Center in January 2016 before releasing an EP or album. This was a pivotal point in both our careers and really made us believe there weren’t any limitations to what would be possible in the future.
Who inspires you in the music world? David Grutman has been one of my mentors since I first started as a manager. He always believed in me and gave me a shot. I also love that he represents Miami to the fullest, as I try to do as well on behalf of the music industry.
Key pieces of advice for making it in this industry: Try to treat everybody as you’d want to be treated and go with your gut.
GABRIELA MARTINEZ PHOTO BY: FABIANA KULICK
TITLE: MANAGING DIRECTOR, WARNER MUSIC LATINA
Gabriela Martinez (@gabyprattmtz) is the managing director of Warner Music Latina, serving as the only woman in the Latin music industry to hold this title. She’s credited with working with some of the biggest names in the industry including Mana, Alejandro Sanz, Luis Miguel and Jesse & Joy, among many others.
Favorite aspect of your job? Knowing that my effort can have any impact at all in culture and specially in music, is what’s drives me. Whenever I see people relating with a song and feeling it, I feel like I have accomplished something quite special.
Who inspires you in the music world? Every single artists big or small that had the courage to believe in their dreams and sacrifice everything to give it a shot inspires me every day.
Best piece of advice you can share with others looking to achieve success in the industry? Be faithful to who you are no matter what it’s the only thing that gives you the drive to push forward in the good and the bad times.
MAYNA NEVAREZ NEVAREZ COMMUNICATIONS
TITLE: FOUNDER & CEO, NEVAREZ COMMUNICATIONS
Mayna Nevarez (@nevarezpr) serves as the founder and CEO of Nevarez Communications, working with clients such as Daddy Yankee, Natti Natasha, Carlos Vives and more. She is also the president of the Miami chapter of global nonprofit organization Women in Music.
Favorite part of your job: It never gets boring. We have to be creative, reinvent ourselves constantly, and be open to learn new trends everyday.
Who inspires you? My first inspiration was my Dad, who taught me the love for music. He was a percussionist in Puerto Rico and showed me the importance of learning how to play an instrument (piano). My clients and fans also inspire me. Sometimes with a small gesture, we can change lives.
Best piece of advice: Find a mentor in your industry. They can provide guidance and make introductions to key players. Also, being a mentor is great to learn new ideas and ways of thinking and it also increases visibility and recognition within the industry. Join a professional organization in your area. For example, I joined Women in Music, and WIM has offered me resources and connections around the world.
LEX BORRERO PHOTO COURTESY OF: NEON16
TITLE: CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER, NEON16
Lex Borrero (@lexborrero) serves as the CEO and co-founder of NEON16, which he started with co-founder and Grammy Award-winning producer Tainy. Previously, he served as the executive vice president of Roc Nation and director of Roc Nation Latin. He’s worked with artists including J Balvin, Bad Bunny, Selena Gomez, Maroon 5 and Chris Brown, achieving Billboard Top 10 hits for tracks such as “I Like It” by Cardi B and “The Middle” by Zedd.
Lex Borrero serves as the CEO and Co-Founder of NEON16, which he started with Co-Founder and Grammy Award-winning producer, Tainy. Previously, he served as the Executive Vice President of Roc Nation and Director of Roc Nation Latin. He’s worked with artists including J Balvin, Bad Bunny, Selena Gomez, Maroon 5 and Chris Brown, achieving Billboard Top 10 hits for tracks like ‘I Like It’ by Cardi B and ‘The Middle by Zed.’
Favorite part of your job: I have the creative freedom to think outside of the box with everything we do.
Who inspires you in the music world? I’m inspired by great artists who shift culture with their ideas like Bad Bunny and Kanye West or music executives like Diddy and Tommy Mottola.
Greatest lesson learned throughout your career: Appreciate and enjoy every win, they are all key steps to your success.
MATT ZINGLER PHOTO COURTESY OF ROLLING LOUD
TITLE: CO-FOUNDER & CO-CEO, ROLLING LOUD
Matt Zingler (@mattzingler) and co-founder Tariq Cherif are credited with creating the largest hip-hop festival in the world, born out of Miami in 2015. Now, Rolling Loud has expanded to New York and California, and plans to expand internationally to Japan, China and Europe in the near future.
Favorite aspect of your job?
Besides traveling ... I love creating a world for kids to be able to get away from reality for a few days and express themselves. I also enjoy curating the lineup. When that flyer drops it really does gives the fans something to look forward too.
Who inspires you in the music world?
I wouldn’t say it was any individual that inspired me in the music world. When I was a kid I was walking through the Hard Rock and I saw a black and white picture of a sea of people at a concert. Under the picture it said the name “Woodstock.” From that day forth I was always fascinated with the idea and thought of throwing my own parties and one day my own events/festivals. I started attending festivals in 2004 and would hop around all summer sleeping in my car saving up to go to these events.
Best piece of advice you can share with other young music entrepreneurs looking to achieve success in the industry?
I would say, “What we believe we become.” I have this tattooed across my forehead. If you believe in it anything is possible. When people would ask me what Rolling Loud was when we first had started I would say the same thing I say to people now. “Rolling Loud is the largest hip-hop festival in the world.” You should do something because you love it. Ask yourself this, if money didn’t exist what would you do for a living? Dream big.
MIGUEL BAÑÓN KELLEY BY MB
MIGUEL BAÑÓN KELLEY
TITLE: HEAD OF PR & COMMUNICATIONS, LATIN & U.S. LATIN SPOTIFY
Miguel Bañón Kelley (@miguel_banon) is responsible for communications at Spotify in Latin America and for the U.S. market. Previously, he worked as a senior PR manager for Southern Europe, based out of Madrid, Spain.
Favorite aspect of your job? My role is to bring to life what Spotify stands for. My team and I support the company’s growth through strategic and consistent storytelling and compelling experiences across internal and external audiences. Thanks to this work, I’ve been exposed to incredibly talented people, which is truly inspiring and challenging at the same time.
How has your industry adapted over the past year? Like everyone, Spotify has been impacted by COVID. We did two things to really reach out to the artist community during this time. We set up a music relief fund that helps artists in need, and we partnered with 19 different organizations around the world. Additionally, Spotify has allowed artists to do an “artist’s pick,” which enables them to fundraise directly from our user base. We've seen millions of people click to donate and to learn more, so that's been a wonderful effort.
Who inspires you in the music world? I am very proud and excited to see the Latin creator explosion from the past few years. I have seen how non-Spanish speakers are crossing over through Bad Bunny or Rosalía songs. That makes me smile and think of a future without borders. Art at its finest. Technology has been a great facilitator of the explosion of Latin music.
Best piece of advice you can share with others looking to achieve success in the industry?
My advice to anyone who wants to work in the music industry is to really get to know it, even if that sounds basic. To sum it up in the words of one of my favorite authors, Hunter S. Thompson: “Buy the ticket, take the ride.”
CHRIS BORCHETTA BY RICHARD GUATY
TITLE: OWNER, CHRIS BORCHETTA NATIONAL RADIO PROMOTION AND MARKETING
Chris Borchetta (@chrisborchetta) has a long-spanning history in the music industry, having worked for Nashville’s Lofton Creek Records, followed by working for his brother, Scott Borchetta’s Big Machine Records and Category 5 Records. He’s worked with artists like Travis Tritt, Mark Chesnutt, Train and Locash. Now, he runs Chris Borchetta National Radio Promotion and Marketing from Miami.
Favorite aspect of the job: Working with new artists, watching them grow and develop and watching new listeners become fans.
Favorite memory: Going on a radio run with Taylor Swift in 2006 during her first single. I had never seen her play live before and she had a radio show for WKSJ in Mobile, Alabama, at a little club—it was packed and she got on stage and it was so captivating, she completely blew me away. I knew in that moment she was something special.
Who inspires you in the music world? My brother, Scott [Borchetta]. He is a badass and has incredible determination, laser focus and the awesome ability to make things happen.
Best piece of advice: Be relentless, but always stay humble, kind and honest.