Bill Wilson, Music Business Association

January 26, 2016 · Posted in Speaker Bios 

Bill Wilson MusicBiz x300Bill Wilson
Vice President, Digital Strategy & Business Development
Music Business Association (Music Biz)

As Vice President, Digital Strategy and Business Development, Bill Wilson leads the charge on all things digital at the Music Business Association (Music Biz), including initiatives such as metadata. A music industry professional with over two decades of experience working in varied roles within independent and major record labels, internet ventures, and mobile content, he brings a well-rounded perspective to the industry trade association.

Wilson was recruited to join Music Biz in 2009 to oversee the Digital Think Tank, conceived by President James Donio to explore and resolve objectives related to enterprise-level digital music commerce. In 2011, this evolved into the entity digitalmusic.org, with four workgroups (Business Development, Digital Supply Chain & Operations, Digital Asset Management, and Music Subscription) that directly addressed current issues in digital commerce. The entity also produced user-friendly resources such as the Metadata Style Guide to facilitate the adoption of industry standards and the API Directory to connect music service providers with developers, brands, and other opportunities. It also made it a priority to help newcomers to the industry create healthy, sustainable music-based businesses, especially through its Music Startup Academy events that have been held around the U.S. and in collaboration with ERA in London. digitalmusic.org was folded together with NARM when the latter rebranded to Music Biz, and its initiatives have been carried on by the new organization.

As an active industry professional, Bill has had featured speaking roles at CMJ, SXSW, Bandwidth, New Music Seminar, DMW Music, Future of Music Policy Summit, CTIA’s Super Mobility Week, and other industry events, including the popular “Bill and Ted Show” with TAG Strategic’s Ted Cohen, which provides a structured forum for the discussion of industry-level issues in the digital space.

For nearly 20 years, from 1989 to 2007, Bill ran Blackout Records, which began as a haven for NYC hardcore and evolved to include releases from such notable acts as Guided By Voices, H2O, and Kill Your Idols. While running Blackout, Bill gained experience at more established independent labels and distributors, including Relativity Records, Caroline Distribution, and Earache Records, ultimately serving as an A&R Consultant for MCA Records in the mid-1990s.

Bill made the jump to working with internet startups in 2001 as Director of Business Development for Roxbox Media, a market research company targeted to the music industry. He then managed online and real-world street team programs at HiFrequency Marketing. In 2005, he joined Haystack Media as VP of Business Development, co-developing an early music-oriented social networking website including an ad-based compensation model for artists and facilitating content relationships. In 2007, Bill became Director of Business Development for mobile content aggregator Cellfish and was responsible for catalog and content licensing for music, games, film, and other forms of mobile entertainment. Later that year, Bill took on the role of Senior Director, Mobile Sales and Business Development for Atlantic Records, with responsibility for sales of ringtones, ringbacks, images, and full track downloads.

Bill has a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration from Fordham University. When not dealing with the issues of 21st century distribution of music, Bill and his girlfriend advocate for the American Pit Bull Terrier.

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