Manager, Business Affairs
Joined The Orchard in October 2012 (as Retail Marketing intern)
You stole our hearts a couple of years ago as a Retail Marketing intern, and then moved upstairs to join the Legal team full time. Tell us, what the #&@$ do you do there, Matt?
It was the fun-loving, hard working atmosphere and all the great personalities of The Orchard that stole my heart during my time as a Retail Marketing Intern. I knew immediately I had to find a way to stick around.
When I moved upstairs to the Business Affairs team, my role changed rather dramatically from taking screenshots of featured Orchard releases and tracking sales figures across digital platforms, to drafting and administering synchronization and master use license agreements, drafting termination letter agreements and putting together contract summaries for our agreements with partnered digital service providers. I also provide general administrative and back-office support for various Orchard teams — things like updating contract and payment information for our labels in OA, filings with the US Copyright Office for our owned content and reviewing contracts and fielding questions internally about what our rights and responsibilities are with respect to our label clients and partners.
More recently, I began getting involved in our mechanical administration service. I’ve become a point of contact both internally and externally for inquiries regarding publishing royalties and DPD (digital reproduction) mechanical licenses, and I help manage and problem solve for any publishing related issues that may arise.
Finally, together with the rest of the Business Affairs and Legal teams, I assist with content rights disputes and third party claims. I help track claims disputes and liaise with partnered service providers to resolve. Yes… I am one of those annoying legal people that send around pushy emails to client managers asking them to inquire about our represented labels’ rights with respect to specific content when we receive disputes.
Mechanical admin sounds important. Can you tell us more about why it matters and how our involvement benefits our clients?
Well… per United States copyright law, music publishers (acting as agents on behalf of songwriters) are entitled to collect a royalty every time a permanent copy of their song is made and distributed on download stores like iTunes and Amazon. Sometimes, when a song is not controlled by our label client (as is the case for many back catalog releases and cover tracks for instance), it can be an administrative nuisance for them to track down the necessary publishers, seek out a license and calculate and pay regular accountings to these publishers. With our mechanical admin service, The Orchard manages that responsibility whenever possible, allowing labels to focus more attention on content creation, curation and promotion, and less on back-office administration.
Our research on you led us to South Africa, where we hear you unleashed your natural inner drummer. So… what else did you let out there?
Haha — I let it all out in South Africa! I lived in Cape Town for just about six months and had the time of my life. I was studying drumming and African music theory but did more partying and exploring than anything else. During my time there I met many of my best friends and some of the most influential people in my life, including some extraordinary musicians from all over Africa at the South African College of Music. All in all, the experience taught me to be more expressive, open minded and to remain passionate without taking life too seriously.
Way to maximize six months of your life! And for all those times you get the cold shoulder in response to your annoying and pushy emails: THANK YOU for all the #&@$ you do, Matt!
specialty homemade dish: I come from a pretty big traditional Italian family so once a year around this time, the whole family gets together to make homemade tomato sauce. The process takes all day and is a lot of hard work but the sauce always comes out absolutely delicious. We make enough and jar for the whole year so you’ll have to come over one Sundayand try it for yourself!
what you did on your last Summer Friday of the year: I relaxed and enjoyed the great weather hanging out with some friends in my backyard.
most memorable live show: That’s a tough one — so many of them have lots of great (and some not so great) memories attached. But the one I find myself thinking about and wishing I could relive most at the moment is Soundwave Croatia Festival 2012. What could be better than wild parties and great music on an absolutely gorgeous Mediterranean island? Favorite acts — De La Soul, Ghost Poet and Jono McCleery.
random fact: I am terrified of bees — mostly because I’ve never been stung.