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Mi5 Recordings Dossier

Ted Mason: President of Mi5 Recordings. Ted played a long-time role as guitarist/songwriter/co-singer/producer, and manager for the British band Modern English (“I Melt With You”), a pop group that sold 4 million records in the US. Additionally, Ted has produced, worked with and played as a session musician for a diverse group of artists, including Peter Gabriel, Pharrell Williams, Common, Mary J Blige, Toots and the Maytals, Trevor Horn, Ne-Yo, Snoop Dogg, Betty Carter, Kid Creole, Santana, the Verve, Jesus Jones, The Wallflowers, Ringo Starr, Julian Lennon, Khaled, Jeff Beck, 10,000 Maniacs, Afrika Bambatta, and Queen Latifa. Ted studied classical guitar at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music before joining Modern English and is also a consummate bebop musician. Ted’s background includes extensive experience in film production and design. His passion is insuring artistic growth for the Mi5 artist. He brings the sensitivity of the trained musician, his eye and skill for production/design, his long track record and his superior management skills, providing powerful momentum and direction in artist development and securing for the Mi5 artist a program for a long and successful career.

Mike Esterson: Senior Partner. Mike has more than 20 years in Rock, Hip Hop and Reggae music. He was the producer of the High Times Cannabis Cup in Amsterdam for more than 8 years and was responsible for production, booking, procuring financing and marketing of the event. He worked with such acts as George Clinton, Fishbone, the Bob Marley family, Jean Grae and the Roots to name a few. Mike was formerly President of High Times Records, a Hip Hip record label distributed through Caroline, with gross sales of over 2.5 million dollars. He is a bass player as well as a music producer. Mike brings his experience in running a label, long term relations with Caroline, deep understanding of the retail and PR end of the business and his strong connections to the pop and hip hop music world.

Frank Coleman: Director of New Media. Born into showbiz, former child actor Frank Coleman is a multimedia artist, musician and filmmaker as well as an industry veteran in design, development and strategy for all types of media, including online, offline, broadcast, interactive, VR and print. With over 500 projects since 1990, including the first interactive music site on the Internet, he brings extensive experience with interactive media, user experience, audiovisual design, digital signage and next-generation entertainment. Clients include Echo and the Bunnymen, Stereophonics, Moby, The Young Gods and many others. A featured artist and guest lecturer on new media at Harvard and Boston Universities and the recipient of many prestigious awards and honors, including a BAFTA Award, two NewMedia INVISION awards, an Apple Design Award, two Webby nominations and an Emmy nomination. Frank also plays drums for Satellite Paradiso (John Ashton, formerly of The Psychedelic Furs).

Michael Molenda: Senior Vice President, International Guitar/West Coast Rock. Michael Molenda’s history in music, guitar, bass and all things rock goes back over two decades. We are fortunate to have him on board with Mi5 Recordings. In addition to being the Editor-in-Chief at Guitar Player Magazine from 1997 to 2018, Michael was Founder/CEO, Guardians of Guitar and the former Editorial Director for Bass Player, Keyboard, and Electronic Musician magazines. He implemented and managed many new programs that will be a benefit for our artists at Mi5 Recordings. For the Guitar Player Magazine brand, Michael managed print, web, and social content teams across four brands-including supplemental revenue projects, such as events, trade shows, and specialized publications. Worked with sales team to serve client promotional needs and identify potential new business. Evangelized brand in the marketplace, to other media, and across reader communities. Founded events, awards, and supplemental businesses to promote the brand and engage guitar fans, such as Guitar Player’s Guitar Superstar Competition, Certified Legend Award, the Ronnie Montrose Rock the Nation Award for Young Guitarists, the revitalized Guitar Player Records (Mi5Recordings/Universal Music Group), and various book projects for Hal Leonard Corporation (The Guitar Player Book, Guitar Heroes of the ’70s, Carlos Santana, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page). Founder of brand extensions, such as Rumble (for teen guitarists) and MC2 (a music technology publication). Took print circulation from 80k to more than 100k in one year after hire. Helped organically grow social networks. Penned more than 2,500 interviews, product reviews, technical commentaries, educational articles, and opinion pieces.

Thomas McDonough: Director A&R, Detroit. Tom has a long history in music, both in the label side and radio. He owned and ran WROM Radio Station for nearly a decade and ran WROM Records (Mi5 Recordings/UMG distribution) dedicated to both independent artists and established acts. Tom’s approach to radio, complementing celebrity interviews with independent music of all genres, was unique in today’s world of music and radio conglomerates. This approach has allowed independent artists to receive the exposure and resources necessary to ensure the greatest amount of success possible, while providing established celebrities with a unique platform to express ideas.  Tom turned all his attention to his radio shows, his record label, TV Show and magazine. He spent a year and half hosting the show, “This Moment in Time” and is now focusing his attention on this radio show, “The D Cap” and the TV show, “Welcome to the D.” He also owns RL Recordings in Detroit (Mi5/UMG distribution) and the magazine, “Music Player Magazine.”

Omar Haddad: A&R. Omar Haddad is a multi-instrumentalist, guitarist, singer-songwriter, and violinist.  Omar is of Arab descent, was born in Canada, and grew up in Buenos Aires, Argentina. As a guitarist, Omar studied with Alejandro Moro and later with renowned guitar player Pino Marrone.  His influences include Jazz, Rock, Pop, Latin, and Classical music, which Omar handles in eclectic signings (A & R) for Mi5 Recordings. Omar also regularly tours with The Glory Gospel Singers under the direction of Ms. Phyliss McKoy Joubert, with whom he performed Anime-Gospel fusion at the yearly 2018 Polymanga Festival in Montreau, Switzerland. He has also performed with several Argentinean stars Dany Martin, Pimpinela Duo, and Guillermo Guido.  American artists Omar has worked with include Klyph Black (member of the Zen Tricksters) Donna Jean Godchaux (Grateful Dead, Black and Sparrow), Nancy Atlas and Chad Smith from Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Mike Stern.

Shaun Smith: UK Support, Logistics and Management, UK A&R. Shaun Smith has spent the better part of three decades playing and managing artists from all genres. He has worked with members of Tears for Fears, The Stranglers, Naked Eyes, Modern English to name a few and has worked with Ted Mason and Mi5 Recordings since its inception in 2000. Shaun provides logistics and support for Mi5 Recordings in the UK as well as providing his ear to the ground in terms of local UK artists.

Sal Garza: A&R (Classical, Rock, World Music): Born in Monterrey, Mexico; studied and lives in Sunny California. Sal was a child prodigy violinist and began his studies at age six under Dr. Watchtang “Botso” Korisheli, who also mentored conducting great Kent Nagano. He has worked with and performed both in rock and the classical arenas with such artists as Mary Ramsey (10,000 Maniacs), Albert Fox, Alex Litgerwood, Jon Anderson (Yes), Jude Johnstone, Modern English, Chrissie Hynde, Rigoberto Sanchez, Romantico group Los Caminantes, Mutato Muzika (Mark Mothersbaugh of Devo) and Surf Rock legend, Merrell Fankhauser. Garza’s work in sound design for Way Out Ware’s Time wARP 2600 and KikAxxe software products keeps him in time with the EDM and Ambient scene as well.

Monty Mason: VP, Legal and Creative Management. Monty brings extensive experience in the International market, a passion for the history and culture of different nations and a deep understanding of literature and film. Monty was an Account Executive for FBI Productions for six years, supervising and vetting many film scripts, business proposals and directing corporate events for clients such as Mercedes-Benz. He has also played bass and guitar for Santana, Kid Creole and the Coconuts and recorded with Modern English. Monty is fluent in French, which has helped facilitate relations with many of Mi5’s artists who are African (French is their 2nd language). Magna Cum Laude, Columbia University, English and French Literature; African and European History.

FILM PRODUCTION

Jennifer Brunetti: VP and partner of FBI Productions, Inc.* Jennifer is Ted Mason’s long-time partner. She has played a role of producer, director, and editor in her work with numerous luminaries, including Robert De Niro and Chris Noth (Sex in the City). She has also worked with a number of Mi5 musical acts such as Hugh Cornwell, of the legendary British proto-punk/New Wave band, The Stanglers; and the alternative pop band, Jesus Jones. Jennifer produces multimillion dollar corporate launches and live shows for her Fortune 500 clients, including Volvo, BMW, Ford, Cadillac, and Mercedes-Benz.

*FBI Productions, Inc is an independent production company whose artistic creations, industry focus, core clients, and corporate affiliations are separate from those of Mi5 Recordings.

Dave Hausen: Owner of Surreel and in-house film producer for Mi5 Recordings.  Dave has a long history in film and the music business producing many of the films and videos for artists such as Metallica, Stone Temple Pilots, Shania Twain and many others. He has produced live documentaries, music videos and DVDs (including), live performances (including a full length films), and corporate work.

PARTNERS

Umbrella Media LLC: www.thisisumbrella.com
Surreel Films: http://surreel.com/

CONSULTANTS

Mick Rock: Photography, Visual Design, Film. Mick Rock is a world-renowned music photographer and a cultural icon in his own right. Though independent and a free agent, Mick works directly with Mi5 Recordings as the photographer and consultant of choice Mi5 Recordings. Mick’s connection with his subjects goes beyond the simple role of photographer. His artistic sensibilities and empathies have enabled him to forge the iconic images of his friends, subjects, and collaborators, including Queen, David Bowie, Lou Reed, Deborah HarryThe Yeah, Yeah, Yeahs and R.E.M.

Alex Boicel: World Music International Consultant and Booking Agent. Born in French Guyana, Alex moved to Montreal at the age of sixteen to begin his career by working for his father, the famed Doudou Boicel, founder of the Montreal Jazz Music Festival and the legendary Montreal jazz and blues club, The Rising Sun. For the last twenty years, Alex Boicel has been one of America’s leading independent promoters through Afro-Mondo Productions, a booking agency for numerous great world music artists as Robert Flack, Harlem Gospel Choir, Shaggy, High Masekela, Wyclef Jean, Salif Keita, Diblo Dibala, Baba Maal, Alpha Blondy, Lucky Dube, Fela, Kassav, Juan Luis Guerra, Eddie Palmieri  and many others.