Friday, 25 November 2011

Scott Borchetta CNBC interview

Scott Borchetta interview on CNBC

Scott Borchetta
Credit (Photo hosted on CMT website)
 BIG MACHINE LABEL Group President Scott Borchetta appeared on CNBC’s  (Consumer News and Business Channel) Power Lunch programme on November 22, 2011. They discuss the current rumours circulating that Big Machine could be sold to SONY. They also chat about Taylor Swift and how Scott looks at her career as “creating a culture.” On starting his own label, BORCHETTA said, "I feel like I'm doing the best work when I'm dancing on the edge."

Interview Transcript:


CNBC – Todays business Coast to Coast . She’s only 21 years old but Taylor Swift is arguably the hottest music artist on the planet. Scott Borchetta CEO of Big Machine Label , which is also behind the acts like Rascal Flatts, Jewel, Reba McEntire many, many others. It's a pleasure to have you here.

Scott Borchetta - great to be here.
CNBC - You're a fellow southern californian.
Scott Borchetta - guilty, yes.

CNBC -  It's like family week up here. There you go. you've had enormous success in building this label, in building this company. But the elephant in the room, let's just get it out of the way right now, the rumour is you're selling to Sony, that Sony is very interested. is that the case?

Scott Borchetta - That's a great rumor, isn't it?

CNBC - It's a great rumor. it would make you an extremely wealthy man.

Scott Borchetta - You know what, I have a house. I have a car. they've got to do something really incredible to close this deal.

CNBC - what about $200 million?

Scott Borchetta - That's a good starting place, isn't it?

CNBC - Are you having discussions with them or others? Universal is rumored to be there as well ?

Scott Borchetta -  The wonderful thing about our company and the independence that we have is that we've created our own winning culture,  and i think it's a culture that is in high demand. So there are a lot of people interested in sharing our culture.

CNBC – So  I would take that as you're open to discussions?

Scott Borchetta -  Hey, you know what? I talk to people all day long every day. let's see what they've got. they're going to have to really buy into what we do.

CNBC - So if sony's listening, I think that's northwards of 200 million bucks, just so you guys know. let's talk about the business itself. You're in a business that is incredibly competitive in terms of not only the artists, but you're in an economy that makes it very difficult for consumers to buy that little extra thing. Yet Taylor Swift is doing -- as we just highlighted -- enormously well. Country music is doing enormously well.  Why is that do you think?

Scott Borchetta - well, if you look over the last 25 years, when the economy is struggling and it's in a is struggling and it's in a downturn, country music has always done well. Family values. story telling. et cetera, that's documented. But the other mantra that we have is, we try to create music by the coolest artists, make the coolest music. It's stuff that you have to own. We don't look at this so much as product. We look at creating this as culture,  and there's a whole culture now of Taylor Swift. That's with them for the rest of their life. that's not just a hit. that's not just a fad. that is -- when you think of the things that were very important to you as you were growing up, you could name it. you could tell me that concert. you could tell me that record. You could tell me your favourite summer. You can go right back there. that's what Taylor has done for this generation. that's -- When we get it right, that's what we try to do.

CNBC - You are someone who's taken a lot of risks in your life. you know, you were a southern california guy who i read is more akin to Sid Vicious ( Scott laughs) than country music. here you are with a country music label. you call yourself a West Coast wildcatter. wildcatter certainly a term our audience is very familiar with. What is the biggest risk that you ever took and what made you take that leap?

Scott Borchetta - I think the biggest risk was walking out of the universal mu music group. I was very well paid. they wanted me to stay in a position that i felt i had peaked in. They weren't willing at the time to move me up and let me run one of the labels. So I said, you know what? I'm done here. I'm leaving. and iIm going to start my own label. I'm still friendly with those people. It's not a negative. but it's like, you're not -- I'm going to have to create this position myself. i'm okay with that. I didn't wait to be anointed some record company head.

CNBC - Was that scary or were you just so confident that you could get it done on your own?

Scott Borchetta - I look back six years, goi, who was that guy? It's just head down,  and it's like, we're going to do this. it was so exciting. and that's, I think, I know i feel i do my best work when i'm dancing on the edge - It was great.

CNBC - You discovered Taylor Swift. You obviously helped create a superstar. How do you find that talent? How hard is it to find a Taylor Swift or a talent that's out there? Obviously, she's a brilliant writer. She's a magnificent performer.
Scott Borchetta - right.

CNBC - But how do you find the next Taylor Swift? or the next artist that is like her?

Scott Borchetta -  Well, it's never the same way twice - That's the exciting part of it. We have a great new act on one of our labels on republic nashville label called the Band Perry who just had a fantastic week at the cma awards, great performance on the American Music Awards, and they came to us. my head of A & R, Allison Jones, said i'm working with this act. it's not ready for you. But i'm going to bring it to you when it is. A cup minutes later she brought it in. i listened to a few of the songs. i'm like, oh, my god. get them in here right now. for me it's usually that first meeting. i know right away what works for us. doesn't mean we haven't passed on some things that have worked. But i fall in love immediately or not. it's not like, well, i need to come and see it again. and there's a third meeting and a fourth meeting.

CNBC - You know right away.

Scott Borchetta - It's like Reba McEntire wants to be here? Clear the oceans. she will be here. come home. you know.

CNBC - What's the best act you ever passed up on. they're telling us we have to go.

Scott Borchetta - It was probably Zac Brown. At the moment we were starting Big Machine.  I didn't have time to investigate it. That was one that was on my desk and i just didn't get it to.
I got to hold up this. this is Taylor's new CD.  

Scott Borchetta - It's in stores today.

CNBC -  Because no one's buying it. no one knows who she is. You've got to put it up.Tthank you so much. we really appreciate it. Let us know if Sony comes knocking.

Scott Borchetta – You have it on the screens here so I’m sure they will be showing up.

SOURCE - CNBC Business

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