A year ago, the best-selling indie publisher Merton was bought by Columbia Music Group for $1.1 billion.
Now, the company is in the process of consolidating its publishing operations, including the publishing of music.
And the company wants to bring its best artists to the biggest platforms.
We spoke with Scott Stegman, Merton’s head of digital, about the future of publishing and what it means to be an independent publisher.
Merton Music Publishing is an imprint of Columbia Music.
We’ve been publishing music for more than 40 years, with a focus on emerging artists and labels.
I’ve been on the editorial staff for the last 10 years, and it’s been an honor to be able to continue this work, as I’ve always loved the music that we publish.MARTIN: Scott Staggs is Merton Records’ head of online publishing.
He’s the guy who’s going to be responsible for all of this.
What are some of the challenges you faced?STEGMAN: We’re working on a new format.
We have to get all the content to the best possible places.
We are a very big player in the music industry.
There are a lot of smaller players.
We’re going to have to do a lot to get the content there in the most optimal places.
And we have to have the right content and the right audience to bring it to the masses.
And then to have those fans come to our shows, and we have the ability to engage with them.
M: So how did this transition come about?ST: It was a natural evolution, because we’ve been a publisher for so long.
We had this great history and we knew what it was to have a great publisher and great team.
And now, we have a new publisher.
We were not able to work with Merton at the time, but we were able to get in touch with them about their future plans.
And when they said they were working on an idea that would give us access to their content, it was a no-brainer.ST: We have a very unique position with them, because they’re the only one in the industry that actually publishes music in the United States.
So it’s very important that we continue to be the only publishing company in the country.
We also have a tremendous amount of experience publishing music in other countries, but it was not a priority for us at the beginning.
M ARTIN: How did you get Merton to agree to that?ST : They wanted to go digital.
I had never met anyone in the publishing world that wanted to buy music digitally.
So we were like, well, maybe that’s what we want.
They had a great deal of experience in that space, and they wanted to be part of that revolution.
They wanted a place where they could do the publishing that they loved.
So that was really a no brainer.MST: So what’s the next step?ST .ST: They’re looking to bring our best artists and the best brands to our platforms.
That’s a really big part of our mission.
They’re bringing our biggest brands and artists to our platform, so it’s going be really exciting.
We want to be a place that has a ton of artists, artists who are well known in the world, and brands that people can connect with.
And that’s where we’re going.MATHEW: Scott, let’s take a quick break.ST : I’m sorry.
MARTIN : I just wanted to bring you back to Merton for a minute.ST .MART: The best-seller list is always going to show what’s on the bestseller lists, right?
And the most successful artists and artists that are on that list, they’re often the ones that get the most attention.
But I want to know what the average listener gets from these artists and what people really get from the brands they work with.
So I think that’s a great place to start.ST.
M.ARTIN : What is the audience?ST.ST.: The audience for the music we publish is a lot different from the audience that comes to our online platforms.
They come to the site, they listen to the music, and then they’re able to decide if they want to buy it or not.
But they’re also not going to want to purchase everything.
Merton has this really great digital distribution platform, and there are also some big brands that come to us, like Universal, which is a huge brand.
And Universal Music has a very important brand that is a big brand in the digital world, as well.
So if they’re not purchasing the digital music, then they may be listening to the digital version of it.
And they’re going into the digital realm to buy that digital music.
So I think there’s a very interesting opportunity for these two things.
And it’s interesting because the way that we