Louisiana: Governor signs music tax credits into law

Photo: Erika Goldring/WireImage.com


Louisiana: Governor signs music tax credits into law

Governor John Bel Edwards signs new bill into law benefitting Louisiana music industry

Advocacy/Jul 21, 2017 - 08:47 pm

Photo: Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards (seated), Recording Academy Board members Sean Ardoin, Tim Kappel and Jay Weigel, Rep. Walt Leger, Kim Dodd, Recording Academy Sr. Membership & Project Manager Reid Wick, and Recording Academy Trustee Ken Shepherd

On July 17 The Recording Academy celebrated the signing of the Louisiana Music Industry Investment Act (H.B. 646), which will go into effect on Aug. 1. This legislation will boost Louisiana's music and sound recording industry through a series of tax credits that encourage music businesses to hire professionals that can offer an entire set of services to support Louisiana's music community.

This bill expands Louisiana's current program to include new job tax credits that can be applied to state income tax to reduce an employer's income tax liability. Additionally, the bill seeks to amend the current sound recording investor tax credit program by restructuring application fees that have been previously prohibitive for smaller recording projects.

The Recording Academy worked closely with Louisiana Economic Development to craft the legislation and champion other organizations to support and promote the legislation, including the American Federation of Musicians, Local 174-496 and the Music and Culture Coalition of New Orleans.

This bill was sponsored by Rep. Walt Leger (D-La.), with co-sponsors Reps. Malinda White (D-La.) and Cedric Glover (D-La.). The bill was signed into law by Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards.

"HB 646['s modification of] the State Sound Recording tax credit ... refocus[es] our efforts on business and job creation that will allow us to leverage Louisiana talent into a more robust and fully integrated industry that serves not only the musicians and the industry, but all Louisiana citizens through a more diverse economy," said Leger.

More for music: Georgia governor signs new music incentives into law

Everything You Need To Know About The Recording Academy's 2022 Chapter Board Elections


Everything You Need To Know About The Recording Academy's 2022 Chapter Board Elections

The Recording Academy's 2022 Chapter Board Elections, open March 29 - April 4, are a pivotal opportunity to serve our local Chapter communities and to help launch the next generation of Recording Academy leaders. Here's everything you need to know.

Recording Academy/Mar 24, 2022 - 09:46 pm

As we prepare to celebrate music's best and brightest at the 2022 GRAMMYs, officially known as the 64th GRAMMY Awards, we must also recognize those who are dedicated to serving our music community year-round.

The active participation of Recording Academy members makes a difference, whether it's voting in the GRAMMY Awards process, recommending peers for membership, or registering for the District Advocate advocacy movement.

The upcoming Chapter Board Elections are a pivotal opportunity to serve our local Chapter communities and to help launch the next generation of Recording Academy leaders. The results of this election will impact the future of the Academy from the local to the national level.

Here's everything you need to know about the Recording Academy's 2022 Chapter Board Elections before voting opens next week.

When are Chapter Board Elections?

The Chapter Board Elections are typically held in early April of each year. The 2022 Elections are open Tuesday, March 29, at 8 a.m. local time – Monday, April 4, at 11:59 p.m. local time.

What are Chapter Boards?

The Recording Academy's membership is organized into 12 Chapters nationwide. Each Chapter has a local Board of Governors that advises and supports the National Board of Trustees and collaborates with the Chapter President and Academy staff on local programming and Academy initiatives.

Who is eligible to vote in Chapter Board Elections?

Each Chapter's Voting and Professional membership vote in their respective Chapter Board Elections to elect their Chapter's Governors.

Who serves on Chapter Boards?

A Chapter Board is composed of Recording Academy members who are elected to the positions of Trustee; Chapter Officers, which include a President, Vice President, and Secretary; and Governors.

Why is voting in Chapter Board Elections important?

Voting is a right and a responsibility as a member.

While we love hearing creators' voices on stage and on recordings, it's our responsibility to listen to their concerns, ideas and recommendations in order to keep our Academy and our industry moving forward.

Your vote makes a difference.

Voting in this election is an opportunity to help drive the Recording Academy and our music communities forward by electing the best and brightest members to your Chapter's leadership.

Your vote helps ensure a diverse, inclusive and representative Board.

Recording Academy members elected to their Chapter Boards ensure the policies and procedures put in place by the Academy reflect the needs and aspirations of our vastly diverse music community.

Your vote is your voice.

As a member of the Recording Academy, your vote carries weight and is tremendously valued.

How can I vote in the Chapter Board Elections?

When the elections open on Tuesday, March 29, Voting and Professional members will receive an email from the Recording Academy with a direct link to their online ballot. This login will be different from each member's Recording Academy login.

Once you click on your ballot link, review the candidates' bios. Vote for the individuals who you believe will best represent your local music community.

Be sure to submit your Chapter Board Elections ballot before voting closes on Monday, April 4. If you have any questions or issues with your ballot, please reach out to elections@recordingacademy.com.

For more information about Recording Academy Governance or to view the current list of Elected Leaders, visit https://recordingacademy.com/Governance.

Recording Academy Bolsters Membership With 2,710 Music Creators And Professionals Invited

The Recording Academy Announces 3rd Annual "Behind The Record" Initiative To Continue To #GiveCredit To Creators In Music


The Recording Academy Announces 3rd Annual "Behind The Record" Initiative To Continue To #GiveCredit To Creators In Music

This year, the Recording Academy's "Behind The Record" initiative, a global social media activation aimed at spotlighting the many creators in music, introduces Behind The Record Advocacy, a new virtual program to discus creators' needs with Congress

Recording Academy/Oct 12, 2021 - 05:00 pm

The Recording Academy has announced that it will continue giving credit where credit is due with its 3rd annual "Behind The Record" initiative, a global social media activation aimed at spotlighting the many producers, engineers, songwriters, composers, mixers, instrumentalists, and other creators who contribute to the music recording process. Taking place Friday, Oct. 15, the industry-wide conversation encourages artists across all music genres to celebrate their collaborators' incredible behind-the-scenes work on the tracks, records and albums loved by music fans around the world. This year's campaign features a short film, narrated by Recording Academy Board of Trustees Secretary/Treasurer Om'Mas Keith, illustrating that behind every hit song is an intricate dance of creativity that builds and builds to the final product.

A day before the social media activation's launch, on Thursday, Oct. 14, the Recording Academy will introduce Behind The Record Advocacy, a new virtual advocacy program to inform lawmakers about issues affecting the creators behind their favorite records. Building off the success of the Recording Academy's "Behind The Record" initiative, Academy members will meet virtually with members of Congress nationwide to discuss legislation that would have a direct impact on America's recording artists, songwriters and studio professionals, such as the HITS Act and the American Music Fairness Act. With nearly 200 meetings with congressional offices anticipated for Behind The Record Advocacy, members will focus on ensuring that the individuals behind the record are able to earn fair compensation for their work.

"It takes a village to create a recording, and as an organization that serves to support all music creators, we invite our peers to join us in spotlighting the many music professionals behind our favorite songs," Harvey Mason jr., CEO of the Recording Academy, said. "While we celebrate the music professionals behind the scenes, we also recognize the importance of fighting for fair treatment of creators. We're proud of the evolution of 'Behind The Record' to include an advocacy element this year as we continue our ongoing work to ensure all music creators flourish."

"Behind The Record" is supported by the Recording Academy's Advocacy Department, Producers & Engineers Wing and Songwriters & Composers Wing. Supporting all music creators—including the artists behind our favorite records—is an urgent initiative for the Recording Academy year-round. Within the past year alone, the Recording Academy established the Songwriters & Composers Wing to better represent the diverse community of music creators who provide the world with the gift of song. The Academy also reintroduced the HITS Act in the House and Senate, which would allow artists and record producers to deduct 100 percent of sound recording production expenses in the year they are incurred, and continued efforts to support women producers and engineers through its Women In The Mix initiative.

To help the Recording Academy further support creators working behind the scenes, artists can participate in "Behind The Record" by:

  • Emailing givecredit@recordingacademy.com to request an access code to the Credit Cover Generator Portal.
  • Posting your Credit Cover across social media channels and tagging those who worked on your project. Use hashtags #BehindTheRecord #GiveCredit #WeAreMusic.
  • Artists can create Credit Covers for a single track or album, and covers will live in a gallery on the "Behind The Record" website for music fans to view and discover the roles of creatives behind some of their favorite records.

For the third year, Jaxsta, the world's largest public-facing dedicated database of official music credits, provided credits for Warner Music, Sony Music, Universal Music Group, and Merlin releases.

For more information, please visit the "Behind The Record" website. Follow and join the global conversation on social media using the hashtags #BehindTheRecord, #GiveCredit and #WeAreMusic.

Learn More About The Recording Academy's "Behind The Record" Initiative

A Letter To Our Recording Academy Members And To Our Colleagues In The Music Industry


A Letter To Our Recording Academy Members And To Our Colleagues In The Music Industry

Read a letter from the Academy's Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees

Recording Academy/Feb 16, 2018 - 01:16 am

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

The Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees is attuned to the calls to action that have resonated ever since the 60th GRAMMY Awards. We recognize the impact of the unfortunate choice of words from our President/CEO, Neil Portnow, in a post-GRAMMY interview. In the many letters and statements that we and our Board have received from some of our most respected artists, as well as prominent female and male music business executives, the message is clear: Our Academy and our industry must do a better job honoring and demonstrating our commitment to cultural, gender and genre diversity, in all aspects of our work. 

The Recording Academy is a membership organization, first and foremost. Like all Academy members, our Trustees live and breathe music, and are embedded in the fabric of our industry. Our Board members - many of whom are women - include independent artists, songwriters, touring musicians, producers and engineers, visual and audio entrepreneurs, A&R executives, and music publishers.  Our Vice Chair and former Chair/Chair Emeritus are women, and our National Awards and Nominations, Membership, Advocacy, and Producers & Engineers Wing Steering committees are all chaired or co-chaired by women. We honor the Academy, and we expect nothing less in return than strict adherence to musical excellence, an inclusive and diverse philosophy, meaningful outreach and communication, a purity of purpose, and an eagerness to embrace change as our musical culture and society evolve

The Academy’s commitment to our community resonates far beyond the nominations, winners and performers on the GRAMMY Awards. MusiCares, the GRAMMY Museum Foundation, and our Advocacy presence in Washington, D.C., speak to how much we care about all the people in our music family, whether they are Academy members or not. Our 12 Chapters nurture new generations of professionals in recording and business, and mentor Governors on our local boards to ally themselves with the issues they are most passionate about. At the heart of what we do, there is mutual respect and the belief that each of us has something unique and valuable to offer. The more diverse we are as an Academy, the better equipped we are to champion our members and our community.

The GRAMMY Awards have always been a positive and negative flashpoint and will likely continue to be because of the ever-changing nature of our world. We are constantly striving to reflect genre, gender, and ethnic diversity in our categories and fields. We welcome proposals from our members to make changes, and we debate all worthy ideas at an annual meeting dedicated solely to this purpose. Likewise, we have worked hard to ensure that our eligibility requirements reflect changing distribution methods. The advent of online voting and the ability to offer audio streams of nominated titles has been designed to make the voting experience convenient, while not compromising security.

The Academy is a thriving, fluid environment. It has a powerful agenda to do good work intended to improve the lives of those who create music, and to ensure that we respectfully participate in a culture where creativity can flourish.  We look to our industry partners to provide opportunities for music creators to maintain their professional careers. We embrace the idea that with the help and support of dedicated artists and professionals, we will undertake a fresh, honest appraisal of the role of women in all aspects of our Academy and the industry at large, with the hope of inspiring positive change.

Our Board of Trustees is committed to creating a comprehensive task force that will take a deep look at these issues and make material recommendations on how we can all do better. We are pleased that our task force announcement has been well received, with many people offering to participate in work that will yield tangible results. As we continue to take the appropriate time needed to ensure that this action is well-conceived and properly developed, we ask you to remember what this is about: improving our community and creating opportunity for all.  If we achieve this goal, we will all look back at this moment as one that has helped reshape the fabric of our industry. 

Please be assured that the Executive Committee and our Board of Trustees holds all the Academy’s leadership to the highest standards. We respect and deeply appreciate the opinions of the artists and industry leaders who have spoken up since the GRAMMY Awards. We cherish the trust that you have in the Recording Academy, and pledge to honor this transformational moment of gender equality as we continue to recognize musical excellence, advocate for the well-being of music makers, and ensure that music remains an indelible part of our culture.


The Executive Committee on behalf of the Board of Trustees
The Recording Academy

Mick Guzauski: Why Daft Punk's 'Random Access Memories' Was Geek Heaven

Mick Guzauski

Photo: WireImage.com


Mick Guzauski: Why Daft Punk's 'Random Access Memories' Was Geek Heaven

GRAMMY-winning engineer details the fascinating path that has led him to a career in creating high-quality sound

Recording Academy/Dec 13, 2017 - 12:50 am

Mix engineer Mick Guzauski unveiled a surprise during his intimate GRAMMY SoundTables event at Chicago’s Old Town School Of Folk Music on Nov 8. As part of his two-hour-long onstage conversation with fellow engineer Matt Hennessey, the studio legend presented a few of his mix sessions on a projection screen. That demonstration itself showed why he has a shelf of GRAMMY Awards spanning jazz, rock, R&B and electronic dance music. As Guzauski called up Pro Tools to analyze the layers of Barry Gibb’s “Gray Ghost” — detailing how much reverb on the lead vocals, the exact amount of processing on the drums — he distilled his approach.

“I try to be a minimalist,” Guzauski said. “If it sounds good, I don’t mess with it.”

California-based Guzauski’s affable and low-key statements throughout the night showed how far his humble devotion to helping create high-quality sound has taken him throughout a career that has spanned nearly 50 years. As Hennessey questioned him about his work with the likes of Dionne Warwick, Daft Punk and Earth, Wind & Fire, Guzauski discussed how he adapted to evolving studio technology, but also showed that his key tools have always been an extraordinary pair of ears.

For Guzauski, a life in engineering recordings came from being a child who loved listening to albums and looking at hi-fi catalogs. That turned into a teenage employment in a sound equipment and record store in Rochester, N.Y., during the late 1960s where he obtained an Ampex tape recorder, a Shure mixer and Neumann U 67 tube microphones (valued vintage equipment nowadays; frequently discarded back then). Despite Hennessey’s enthusiasm, Guzauski laughs at the mixed results of his initial forays. Still, with the Eastman School Of Music nearby, his city had a thriving jazz scene and one musician he befriended was Chuck Mangione. They worked together on live dates during the early and mid-1970s and the trumpeter offered an invitation to record him in a Los Angeles studio. The particular challenges for the young engineer included that it was to tape Mangione’s 45-piece orchestra.

“It was scary,” Guzauski said. “He liked to do everything live. But we pulled it off and went from there.”

Still, it took a little while for Guzauski to help craft a hit record for Mangione. That came in 1978 with the smash “Feels So Good.” After Hennessey played the famous track, he asked Guzauski if they knew at the time how big it would become.

“It was one of those records where we knew something would happen,” Guzauski said. “And I got to experiment a little bit on it—I’m proud of the way I used reverb.”

Such success opened doors and Guzauski found himself increasingly busy in Los Angeles’ studio scene during the latter 1970s and early 1980s. He referred to working with Earth, Wind And Fire as well as its longtime engineer George Massenburg as, “a great experience—all of their consoles were built from the ground up.” After Hennessey played the band’s 1981 post-disco hit, “Let’s Groove,” Guzauski detailed how they used compression and other techniques to make the handclaps sound distinctive. Still, he had a lighter anecdote about the recording of Warwick’s 1985 “That’s What Friends Are For.”

"Stevie Wonder did his vocals at the very end,” Guzauski said. “And he snuck in the line, ‘Can I borrow some money?’”

After Tommy Mottola became head of Sony Music, he brought Guzauski back to New York in the 1990s to work on such star projects as Mariah Carey’s albums. Using his favored Solid State Logic consoles, he built his own studio in Mount Kisco, N.Y. At this time, Guzauski recorded more Latin artists, like Alejandro Sanz, and Hennessey added how adept he was at also shifting into synthesizer-based R&B.

“It was interesting,” Guzauski responded. “But it didn’t take me long to miss real, live music.”

Most of their discussion centered on his lengthy successes, but the conversation also touched on difficult times that Guzauski endured not long ago. He mentioned that with the ascent of Internet-based streaming services, “budgets just dropped.” A timespan between 2004 and 2013 yielded little work opportunities.

But Guzauski eventually triumphed when Daft Punk hired him to mix its wildly popular 2013 electronic dance album Random Access Memories. After Hennessey asked about who would pay for an expensive session “in a post-Napster era,” Guzauski said the group funded the recording, which brought in a multi-layered range of live dates tracked to Pro Tools and analog consoles. He could also go back to his love for the sound of half-inch tape.

"This was geek heaven,” Guzauski said of the session. The engineers, producers, musicians and audiophiles in his GRAMMY audience at the Old Town School applauded in affirmation.

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