• “Unifying these two organizations means an incredible win for the Memphis community, a great plus for serious talented artists across multiple genres and also another tremendous contribution to the global music industry from right here in Memphis.” —David Porter, Chairman & President, The Consortium MMT
• “Our work has been about providing practical solutions and tools for musicians and entrepreneurs who dream about making a living in music. This merger will bring dreams closer to reality. The Memphis music industry just got a great boost.”
—Al Bell, Chairman, Memphis Music Foundation
June 25, 2014 — Memphis, Tenn. — Two organizations announced today another history-making moment in Memphis music. The Memphis Music Foundation, chaired by Stax Records legend Al Bell, will merge with The Consortium MMT, an incubator for emerging musical talent focused on soul music and founded by Hall of Fame songwriter and producer David Porter.
The combined entity will continue use of the name The Consortium MMT, with the Music Foundation’s flagship initiative renamed the Memphis Music Resource Center (MRC) at The Consortium MMT. Porter will remain chairman and president of The Consortium MMT, with Bell serving on The Consortium MMT Board as a director.
Both The Consortium MMT and the Memphis Music Foundation independently have offered services and programs unmatched by other music organizations in the country. The merger’s aim is to advance the local music industry by organizing the global Memphis music legacy and brand under one constructive approach and by broadening the global credibility of all genres of Memphis music.
“With this merger, we can capitalize on the global credibility Memphis already has earned due to our contribution to soul music,” said Porter. “The Consortium MMT has already created buzz throughout the industry and with the addition of the Music Resource Center at The Consortium MMT, we’ll open doors for more genres of Memphis music while still focusing on soul.”
“Serious artists of all genres deserve community support to help them advance their talents and opportunities,” continued Porter. “Our energy is on those ready to move forward.”
The boards of directors of the Memphis Music Foundation and The Consortium MMT unanimously approved the merger on Tuesday, June 17 and Wednesday, June 18, respectively.
Memphis Music Foundation board member David Edmonds, an executive at FedEx Services who will become a new board member of The Consortium MMT, believes the merger is an ideal way to unify and strengthen programming that assists Memphis’s young musical talent.
“Personal energy, financial resources and community support work best when they are lined up behind a shared mission and not fragmented across two or more organizations,” explained Edmonds. “This is exactly what the merger of these two high-impact organizations achieves: a singular focus on what is already good and what is going to be possible in the future for Memphis music.”
To support the newly joined operations, The Consortium MMT will establish a “Talent Development Center.” The Center will house the Memphis Music Resource Center and The Consortium MMT’s flagship “Emerging Stars Network” program. It is expected to open for business in fall 2014.
“We’re excited about creating an even stronger Memphis Music Resource Center with infrastructure to support multi-genre efforts,” said The Consortium MMT VP and executive director George Monger, himself a music entrepreneur. “Working together, we’ll all be better in the music industry.”
The Memphis Music Resource Center was established in 2008 as part of the Memphis Fast Forward economic development program, MemphisED. It flourished under the leadership and direction of Dean Deyo, president of the Memphis Music Foundation, who will be retiring this month.
“This merger introduces a new, collective voice for Memphis Music,” said Deyo. “I’m excited that, together, these efforts represent a powerful and unmatched opportunity to create even greater impact with Memphis artists and entrepreneurs who seek to make a living by making music. The Music Resource Center at The Consortium MMT will continue to leverage this amazing thing called Memphis Music – with even more muscle than before.”
The merger is expected to be finalized within the coming weeks.
AVAILABLE MEDIA ASSETS:
• YouTube video about The Consortium MMT’s work (link)
• Musician photos (email attachments)
• Additional commentary about the merger (enclosed)
• Merger fact sheet (enclosed)
• Board of Directors listing for The Consortium MMT (enclosed)
MEDIA CONTACT: Catherine (Kitty) Taylor, RedRover Company, 901-266-2662
About The Consortium MMT (www.theconsortiummmt.org)
The Consortium MMT is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, founded and led by Hall of Fame songwriter and producer David Porter, dedicated to developing a viable music industry in Memphis for the future. This goal is advanced by providing a learning-structured environment to enrich and equip young talent with proven tools, including direct knowledge, proven techniques and insight from internationally successful music industry veterans, to build the next generation of successful soul music professionals.
In merging with the Memphis Music Foundation, Porter and his team will add programming in support of entrepreneurs and artists of all music genres through the new Memphis Music Resource Center at The Consortium MMT.
“The merger is a win-win for both organizations and the great people who work within them and are served by them. Joining forces means more opportunity for the music community in Memphis and the whole music industry. Many well-rounded people who have been through the challenges of the industry have come together to support the
next generation of Memphis musical talent.”
—James Alexander, Member, The Bar-Kays
“This merger is a step in the right direction for Memphis music. It’s really going to bridge gaps and move things forward for this industry. My studio has churned out a lot of hit records and new talent has always been important to that. It is going to be a win for all of the studios in the area as this organization funnels out new and fresh talent. David Porter is a Memphis music icon. We are blessed to have someone with his talent and experience that is giving back to the community. He is truly a steward of the precious Memphis sound and something like this couldn’t be done without him.”
—Lawrence “Boo” Mitchell, Chief Manager of Royal Studios; President of the Memphis Grammy Chapter
“I have been blessed to be able to use music to reach people, to really speak to them. I have received so much information and inspiration from The Consortium MMT and the Memphis Music Foundation. I have no doubt this merger will create an influx of amazing talent sharing their knowledge, experience and the Memphis sound with people all over the world.”
—Kirk Smith, Musical Artist and Participant in The Consortium MMT and Memphis Music Foundation
# # #
The Merger: The Memphis Music Foundation, chaired by Stax Records legend Al Bell, will merge with The Consortium MMT, founded and chaired by Hall of Fame songwriter and producer David Porter. Both boards have approved the merger, which will be executed officially in the coming weeks.
The Combined Entity: The name of the joint organization will be The Consortium MMT, with the Music Foundation’s flagship initiative renamed the “Memphis Music Resource Center (MRC) at The Consortium MMT.”
The New Talent Development Center: The Consortium MMT will establish a “Talent Development Center” to join and house the Memphis Music Resource Center operations and its Emerging Stars Network program. The Talent Development Center will provide programming in support of industry entrepreneurs and artists of all music genres and is expected to open in the fall of 2014.
The Leadership: David Porter will remain as chairman and president of The Consortium MMT, with Al Bell serving on the board of directors. Additionally, current Memphis Music Foundation Board member and FedEx Services executive David Edmonds will join The Consortium MMT Board. The full board of directors list follows.
The Staff: The Consortium MMT’s VP and executive director, George Monger, will remain at the helm of the joint organization. Staff to support the newly merged operations will be announced upon the completion of the merger.
The Next Steps: The merger will be completed in the coming weeks and stakeholders of both organizations will be kept apprised as plans become finalized. Memphis Music Resource Center members and clients may contact Pat Mitchell Worley at firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEDIA CONTACT: Catherine (Kitty) Taylor, RedRover Company, 901-266-2662