Music Business Council Looks Close to Home for Guidance

Mayor Karl Dean has established a Music Business Council to help grow the industry in Nashville. Council members have few models to follow as they outline their priorities.

Austin, Texas has a 10-year-old music commission focused on performers and protecting live music venues. Seattle named its own music commission in January tasked with branding the city.

Celebrity money manager Mary Ann McCready, who chairs Nashville’s new council, says instead of looking at other cities, she’s more interested in an example set closer to home.

“The Nashville Health Care Council is a big deal and it’s had huge success in bringing Health Care companies here and the businesses that support health care. And it’s been great for Nashville’s economy.”

The Health Care Council organizes a speaker series with industry experts and plans occasional trade missions to drum up business for Nashville-based firms.

In the music industry, McCready says Nashville has the advantage of being known as a music town, but mostly for its songwriters. She says the city is less known for its touring companies, management firms and publishing houses.

Mayor Karl Dean wants the music council to increase live music venues, attract business relocations and develop a festival outside the country genre.

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