From the rock revolution to the digital revolution, current NMPA Board member, Dean Kay, has successfully participated in the music industry as both a creator and businessperson. He has been at the helm of some of the most highly respected and forward thinking music publishing companies in the world, first as COO of the Welk Music Group, a major independent company, then as President/CEO of the U.S. division of the PolyGram International Publishing Group, and now as President/CEO of his own precedent setting venture, Lichelle Music Company, his platform for reinventing the music publishing business for the digital age.
Since before the introduction of the web browser, Mr. Kay has worked aggressively to understand and embrace the Internet’s opportunities while striving to defend and enhance creators rights in the digital space.
Through his daily news digests, “The Dean’s List,” and the “ASCAP Daily Brief Powered by The Dean’s List,” he keeps well over 100,000 people whoare actively involved in the music industry plugged into the opportunities – and challenges – that lie ahead. His intent is to use his rich experience in the traditional music industry to build a bridge between the industry’s past and its future.
Prior to his involvement in publishing, he was a successful songwriter, having had hundreds of his compositions recorded, including “THAT’S LIFE” by Frank Sinatra. He was also a recording artist for RCA Records, appeared daily as a featured entertainer on the nationally televised Tennessee Ernie Ford Show, performed live across the nation, and produced dozens of phonograph records and radio and television commercials.
Throughout his career, Mr. Kay has nurtured the careers of scores of songwriters, recording artists and music industry executives. Along the way he has been the chief caretaker of the creative treasures of a diverse group of musical geniuses including Jerome Kern, Richard Rodgers, Oscar Hammerstein II, Cole Porter, Elton John, Bernie Taupin, Johnny Horton, Don Williams, Ricky Skaggs and Rick Springfield to name a few.
Today, Mr. Kay is a sought after speaker, consultant, and advisor regarding the use of music in the digital space while simultaneously utilizing the ever expanding array of new technologies to enhance the opportunities of his current client roster of talented creators and publishers.
Mr. Kay also serves on the Boards of Directors of the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) and the Harry Fox Agency, Inc. as well as the Board of the ASCAP Foundation. Through the years he has been a member of many music industry Boards including the Country Music Association (CMA), the Academy of Country Music (ACM), the Association of Independent Music Publishers (AIMP), and the California Copyright Conference (CCC)