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NOISEMAKERS:
THE NEW BATCH

The industry folk showcased here haven’t appeared often in our publication—and after this mortifying experience, they probably hope they never will again.

In any event, meet another batch of professionals from different parts of the biz whose dedication and effort make their superiors look good.

Jodie Shihadeh
Managing Attorney, The Davis Firm 

At Doug Davis’ firm, there are very few deals that Shihadeh, who manages day-to-day operations, doesn’t personally oversee. For example, she recently negotiated RECORDS’ venture with Sony Music on behalf of firm client Ron Perry. Shihadeh, who’s particularly proud of passing the California bar exam last year while working full-time (she passed the NY bar previously), confesses that she set off on her musical path as an angsty teen drummer with an affinity for Empire Records.

Josh Deane
A&R Manager, Interscope

The L.A. native and Syracuse alumnus is head over heels for the next wave of Louis the Child. He also suggests people be on the lookout for Jaira Burns, whom he calls a force. And whenever he catches a whiff of kush, he’s pleasantly reminded of the time he shared a spliff with DRAM, Neil Young, Chet Faker and Rick Rubin at Shangri La on a summer day in Malibu.

Natina Nimene
VP of Urban Promotion, Def Jam

Known for her strong relationships with top programmers and on-air talent at iHeart and Radio 1, Nimene was recently involved in breaking records for Jhené Aiko, 2 Chainz, Toni Braxton, Logic and buzzing young songstress DaniLeigh. She says she’ll start taking Keith Rothschild’s calls the day he can successfully negotiate saying her name 10 times fast.



Braeden Rountree
Agent, WME

Things that recently made Rountree go “Eeee!”: Granger Smith’s debut single “Backroad Song” going 
#1 and platinum, Kane Brown selling out 100+ headline shows in his first two years of touring (with more than 200k tickets sold) and Ryan Hurd landing four different songs on big Spotify playlists within the first six months of his career. Rountree and his team are in the process of finalizing 2018 touring details for Smith, Brown and the Marcus King Band.

Adam Mersel
Senior Manager, First Access

Mersel insists Bebe Rexha’s “career-defining” debut album Expectations (due 6/22) is going to shock and impress with its honesty and vulnerability. He lists seeing Rexha onstage at Madison Square Garden for the Grammys—alongside Kesha, Camila Cabello, Julia Michaels, Andra Day and Cyndi Lauper—as a bucket-list moment. He’s also excited to be working on breaking Jack & Jack’s “Beg” globally with David Massey and the Island team. We can only guess how many black snapbacks he owns.

Elissa Ayadi
VP of Fan Engagement, Warner Bros.

Ayadi, who joined WBR in 2016, came up in the creative agency and tech-startup worlds. She’s worked on projects for artists ranging from Dua Lipa to DVSN and counts the announcement of Linkin Park’s last album via Facebook Live as a peak moment. She’s all about “using content to tell a story beyond our traditional sales messaging.” Also, her hair alone has more social followers than you do.

Jennifer Drake

Senior Director A&R, Sony/ATV Music Publishing

Drake’s signings to SATV include Grammy nominees Cardi B and Khalid. While serving at ASCAP earlier in her career, she signed Kendrick Lamar to the PRO. Her newest signings include Mike Sabath (Adam Levine, Charli XCX) and writer/artist Alec King, with tunesmith Ink on deck. She’s working with Team Khalid on his sophomore set. She hopes one day to collaborate with Oprah, or at least have lunch with her.

Sterling Simms
Director of Creative, Universal Music Publishing Group

Philly native Simms reps such writers as Metro Boomin, Miguel, Jeremih, Charlie Handsome and Hit-Boy (Beyoncé, Kanye, Travis Scott), among others. He was an artist on Def Jam and RCA before transitioning to the biz side, and has earned three Grammy nods. He also served at Atom Factory and SONGS Music Publishing. “I now work for a company,” he notes, “that I’m also signed to as a songwriter.” Simms has a tattoo of a star, but we won’t say where.

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PIZZA AND MARKETSHARE
I'm winning this one.
THE BOILER ROOM
It's the new tape room.
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