iHeartMedia’s Bob Pittman, Wealthy Bressler, John Sykes and Tom Poleman have been introduced with the Music Visionary of the 12 months award by UJA-Federation of New York on the group’s annual luncheon in New York right this moment earlier than a number of hundred of the trade’s high executives.
Whereas the occasion is all the time heat and festive, the leisure is the spotlight: Previous years have featured performances from Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder, Justin Timberlake, Alicia Keys, H.E.R. and plenty of others — and this 12 months the gang was handled to 2 songs every from younger singer-songwriter Jade Chicken, nation hitmakers Dan and Shay and fast-rising soul singer Lizzo.
It could be an understatement to say that many within the room could be desirous to please the iHeart execs: the corporate operates the biggest radio community within the U.S. Pittman (pictured above) is its chairman and CEO and was a cofounder of MTV; he has additionally been CEO of MTV Networks, AOL Networks, Six Flags Theme Parks, and different organizations. Bressler is president, COO and CFO of of iHeartMedia and iHeartCommunications and was beforehand managing director on the Boston-based non-public fairness agency Thomas H. Lee Companions. Sykes is president of iHeart’s leisure enterprises and was additionally a cofounder of MTV, president of VH1, CEO of Infinity Broadcasting (now CBS Radio) and president of Chrysalis Information. And iHeart veteran Poleman is the corporate’s chief programming officer and beforehand oversaw Z100/New York.
Above: Dan + Shay (Michael Priest Images)
After some opening remarks from iHeart on-air personalities Angie Martinez and Bobby Bones, Jade Chicken carried out two songs solo, accompanying herself on piano and acoustic guitar. Dan and Shay carried out two songs, ending with their hit “Tequila,” which they thanked iHeart for supporting and serving to to make it the hit it’s grow to be. Shay ended the music on an impressively long-held observe.
Subsequent, Martinez launched an artist she’s “obsessive about,” soul singer Lizzo. The singer tore by way of the title observe from her lately launched album “Cuz I Love You,” after which was joined onstage by three of her dancers for “Fact Hurts.” She devoted the music to the iHeart execs, clarifying that the kiss-off portion of the lyrics “aren’t devoted to you — they’re devoted to another males, however the remainder is for you!” Whereas the music acquired off to a rousing begin, no matter know-how gremlins dogged her units at Coachella appeared to have adopted her to UJA, as about half of the backing observe mysteriously dropped out mid-song. Fortunately Lizzo appeared to not discover and carried, and the sound balanced returned after about two minutes.
Above: Jade Chicken (Michael Priest Images)
The ceremony wound to an in depth after veteran MTV exec Judy McGrath — who labored for a few years with Pittman and Sykes — launched the quartet, who have been hilariously photoshopped as Avengers — as “rule benders and rebels,” and “the great guys you need in your nook.”
Pittman took the stage — “we’re gonna spare you 4 speeches” — and spoke of how honored all of them are to obtain the award, and briefly however graciously thanked their colleagues, the UJA and the individuals within the room. In a nod to previous years at UJA, which might generally run uncomofortably lengthy, he checked out his watch and mentioned, “Are we actually out of right here earlier than 2 p.m.? We win!”
Above, left to proper: Judy McGrath with iHeartMedia’s Bressler, Pittman, Poleman and Sykes (Michael Priest Images)
Final 12 months Spotify CEO Daniel Ek and international head of creator companies Troy Carter have been honored on the UJA luncheon (though the previous didn’t attend and the latter, who did, left the streaming large six weeks later). Previous recipients of the award embrace Sony Music CEO Rob Stringer, Common Music Group government vp Michele Anthony, and Republic Information founders Monte and Avery Lipman, amongst others.