Phish has raised over $3.5 million dollars for flood recovery efforts in Vermont and Upstate New York during their pair of benefit concerts at the Broadview Stage at SPAC in Saratoga Springs on Aug. 25 and 26.
Both shows featured special pre-show acoustic sets with Phish’s Page McConnell and Trey Anastasio, while the Aug. 26 show saw Phish joined on stage by guitarist Derek Trucks.
“We are so grateful to everyone who donated their time and resources to make these benefits possible, and those that attended the shows or watched online,” said McConnell. “The joy in the room at these concerts was undeniable. But for the people affected by the flooding, it is an ongoing struggle. That’s why we are continuing to accept donations, raise awareness and distribute the funds.”
The concerts were webcast for free at LivePhish.com and on Phish’s YouTube channel, where fans were encouraged to donate directly to the WaterWheel Foundation’s 2023 Flood Recovery Fund. The money raised from both events is derived from 100% of the net proceeds from all ticket revenues and merchandise sales, as well as individual donations. The funds will be used to help communities throughout Vermont and Upstate New York that have been affected by historic levels of rain and major flooding.
The website to donate to WaterWheel is still live here, and an array of Benefit merchandise is available now at the Phish Dry Goods store.
+ Sean “Diddy” Combs donated $1 million to Jackson State Football during the team’s Cricket MEAC-SWAC Challenge Kickoff in Atlanta on Aug. 26. This is the second huge investment the entrepreneur and music mogul has made in the last week, following his $1 million dollar TK into Earn Your Leisure, a media platform that helps propel “emerging and established content creators from the world of business, finance, and entrepreneurship whose perspective, expertise and in-depth insight has been undervalued and overlooked,” according to their website.
Combs pledged $1 million from the Sean Combs Foundation to JSU Football during his Lifetime Achievement Award acceptance speech at the 2022 BET Awards, with details finalized over the past year. Combs will continue to invest in JSU football in installments over the next several years.
“As someone who went to Howard University and understands the invaluable experience of attending historically Black colleges and universities, it’s important that we all do our part to protect and preserve their legacy,” said Combs. “This contribution to Jackson State isn’t just about making a financial donation, it’s about giving back to a part of our culture that has changed countless lives and assuring HBCU’s receive the support they deserve.”
“Although this donation does not directly impact other schools, this pledge uplifts the entire HBCU community by bringing awareness to the ongoing commitment to professional development, career advancement, and increased support for HBCU athletics and institutions,” the press release reads.
+ Music ticketing platform Dice has raised $65 million in funding led by “Music,” an investment company focused exclusively on music and music-adjacent businesses.
The funding will help accelerate Dice’s launch in new cities, as it continues its expansion across the U.S. and globally. New partnerships will be announced in the coming weeks though Dice has already unveiled plans to implement their ticketing technology in Austin, with more details to follow. This investment also follows landmark deals in Europe.
Phil Hutcheon, CEO and founder of Dice, said: “The live music industry is adopting Dice faster than ever and proves our thesis that if you treat fans well, they buy more tickets, and go out more often. We’re investing heavily in building even more technology and this year alone we released over 60 new features for fans, venues and artists. I’m excited that Matt [Pincus, CEO of “Music”] has joined the Board [of Directors] and we’re more focused than ever on our mission to get fans out more.”
Other investors include Structural Capital and Ahdritz Holding LLC, the investment vehicle for Willard Ahdritz, founder and chairman of Kobalt Music; with investments from Exor Ventures and Mirabaud Lifestyle Fund.
This new funding will also support Dice’s ongoing product investments aimed at creating the best possible experience for fans and removing barriers preventing people from going out more. Dice simultaneously announced the appointment of Ali Byrd as its new chief financial officer. Ali joins Dice with more than a decade’s experience with start-up companies, most recently at Olive, a disruptive AI healthcare technology company based in the U.S. He also previously held senior positions at Microsoft, CoverWallet and Limewire.
+ BMG has announced its long-time senior business and legal affairs executive Anthony (Tony) Abner has been appointed to global general counsel, and executive VP of business and legal affairs.
Serving as the most senior attorney counseling BMG senior management and managing BMG’s global legal teams, Abner will report directly to BMG CEO Thomas Coesfeld. Abner will work out of BMG’s Los Angeles offices, and his appointment comes one year after his relocation to BMG’s head office in Berlin to coordinate BMG’s global legal matters.
Abner joined BMG in 2018 as the VP of business and legal affairs, responsible for the BMG recorded legal team in North America. In 2020 he was promoted to senior VP of business and legal affairs. Prior to joining BMG, Abner held senior executive posts at PMP Records (which functioned as Def Jam’s first West Coast office bringing Warren G, Domino, and Montel Jordan into Def Jam) and Loud Records (home to Wu-Tang Clan, Mobb Deep, 36Mafia, Big Pun, and Funkmaster Flex) as well senior attorney positions at music law firms Lenard & Gonzalez and Davis Shapiro Lewit Montone & Hayes.
+ Naïka has signed a global publishing deal with Sony Music Publishing on the heels of her recently announced “Transitions” U.S. tour, which comes in celebration of her eponymously-titled 2022 EP.
With the deal, Naïka will expand her partnership with Haitian DJ and record producer, Michael Brun, who will help further advance her creative development through writing and studio collaborations. The two artists have previously collaborated on Naïka’s “M&M’s for Breakfast,” as well as the singer’s hit single “African Sun (Michael Brun Remix).”
“I am so excited and grateful to be joining the SMP family, especially under the guidance and mentorship of Michael,” says Naïka. “He has become like a big brother to me, and one of the first artists to ever believe in me even before I had any real music out. This feels like a new chapter in my life, and I am excited for what is to come. Our goals are very much aligned, we work to show the world the greatness of Haiti, while bringing communities together, bridging cultures and promoting global unification through music.”
Added Nick Bral, VP of creative for SMP: “We are excited to welcome Naïka into the SMP family and expand our business with Michael. The future is very bright for both of them and we couldn’t be happier to be going on this journey with them.”