Spotify Hires Lady Gaga Manager Troy Carter for Global Role

Updated on
  • Will report to company’s chief content officer Stefan Blom
  • Artist relations and labels relations among primary roles

Swedish music streaming startup Spotify Ltd. has hired industry veteran Troy Carter, previously manager to Lady Gaga, to strengthen relations between the company, songwriters and musicians.

Troy Carter
Troy Carter
Photographer: Steve Jennings/Getty Images for TechCrunch

Carter, a 43-year-old from Philadelphia, will start work next week, according to an e-mailed statement from Spotify on Tuesday. As global head of creator services, Carter will lead teams handling artist, songwriter and record-label relations. He’ll report to Chief Content and Strategy Officer Stefan Blom.

Carter’s hiring brings to Spotify an executive with a legacy of managing relationships between A-list artists, their digital properties and the businesses that depend on their support. It comes amid a multitude of controversies in the music industry, over royalty payments, consumer prices and access to songs. Other online players have brought in major music-industry figures as they seek to improve relations with labels, for example Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre, who joined Apple Inc. with the purchase of their Beats Electronics.

As an entrepreneur, Carter founded Los Angeles-based Atom Factory Inc., an entertainment and artist management company at which he serves as chief executive officer. He will be based in the U.S., mainly in Los Angeles, and travel frequently to New York, according to a person familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named discussing private plans.

“After 15 years of talent management, I’ve decided that it’s time to explore new roads,” Carter wrote in a statement posted to his Facebook page. “Through Atom Factory, my team will stay in place to run our tech, culture and hustle outlet SMASHD.co as well as launch a brand innovation agency.”

The debate around whether royalty payments made to artists are too low came to blows most notably when singer Taylor Swift pulled her music from Spotify and temporarily from Apple Music. British superstar Adele never released it there.

Some of the world’s most powerful acts now choose to deliver their music only to certain streaming providers. Hip-hop mogul Jay-Z’s Tidal exclusively offered his wife Beyonce’s latest album upon its release.

(Updates with industry controversy in third paragraph.)
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