The Team Behind, The Black Promoters Collective
Trendsetter, innovator, and visionary are just a few words that describe the overall drive, business acumen, professional intensity, and depth of experience as a promoter, producer, and businessman. As CEO of G-Squared Events, Gary has been recognized as a Pollstar Top 100 Promoter and has served more than 2.5M consumers via his touring properties.
Known for being an honorable business executive, Shelby has built a successful career with an extensive network in the music, entertainment, and concert promotion industries. Over the last twenty years, some of these key relationships include partnerships with the top venues in New York and New Jersey including Madison Square Garden, The Beacon Theater Prudential Center, Barclays Center, Kings Theatre and The New Jersey Performing Arts Center.
WILLIAM “BILL” INGRAM
Is a former banking executive turned concert promoter and philanthropist with over 40 years of experience. Recognized as an expert promoter who genuinely cares about the artists and attendees at his events, Bill enjoys putting together groups onstage from Patti La Belle, Phyllis Hyman, Rick James, Jay-Z, Notorious B.I.G., Destiny’s Child, Chris Rock, Bernie Mac, and T.I. Bill is credited for assisting with the early careers of Teena Marie, Russel Simmons, Martin Lawrence, and several other artists.
Shahida Mausi’s career has spanned leadership roles in the for-profit, non-profit and public sectors. In each instance managing multimillion-dollar budgets, she has successfully built bridges between internal and external sectors. Utilizing the cultural and entertainment industries Shahida has strived to build institutions to do well while doing good. In 1996, she formed The Right Productions, Inc.
A. TROY BROWN
Is a much-heralded digital story-telling executive with demonstrated skills in creative DSM (Digital/Social/Mobile) and content; with an award-winning portfolio of work and media coverage for Fortune 100 global brands and clients spanning across multiple industries and disciplines. He serves as the chief architect and President of one50one, an accomplished innovation engine in a converged media, advertising and entertainment environment.
Is the Director of Operations & co-founder of Bay Area Productions. He’s a 37-year entertainment executive. His daily activities include booking artists, negotiating contracts, constructing concert budgets as well as creating & developing event concepts. At age 15, Bea worked as a DJ in an Oakland Night Club & as a 16-year-old high school junior Bea started producing High School Dances. He has never looked back. Bea is a prodigy of the world’s most successful promoter, the late great Bill Graham.
Sulaiman Mausi’s name is synonymous with cutting-edge excellence in the entertainment promotions industry. He has continued to bring awareness and appreciation of quality entertainment to the urban communities of Southeastern Michigan for over 10 years. His modern influence and fresh perspective were seen early in his career, when he served as Marketing Coordinator for the Detroit Historical Museum.
Ms. Cotton is the Director of Business Affairs at Bay Area Productions and joined their team in 1984 as an Administrative Assistant and quickly advanced within the company. Her current responsibilities include managing all company finances from distributions to all event settlements, booking concert venues, routing concert dates, insurance liability, Human Resources, Box Office Management as well as day-of-show management.
Behind every successful artist is a team committed to jumpstarting their roadmap to stardom. The majority of the musicians we’ve watched blossom into superstars received their first significant break at local and small concert venues. Their live performances circulate their names within the industry, bringing in new fans, resulting in bigger shows being booked and music labels calling to sign them.
While the artist’s career begins to take off, the promoters who helped them land their first official gig aren’t always recognized properly. Ties between artists, their team, and promoters are often severed, leaving Black indie promoters with the short end of the stick. The Black Promoters Collective (BPC) is a 100% Black-owned coalition working to fight the inequality that Black promoters face in the live entertainment industry by having artists be presented both to the culture and by the culture.
“When the pandemic hit, we were able to slow down and we started to just talk and say, ‘This is our time to take a stand, come together, and discuss our culture,’” CEO Gary Guidry told AfroTech. “Through that discussion, we started to just really see a bigger picture that it was bigger than us and bigger than just doing concerts. This was about culture. This was about our culture being marketed by people who have no connection.”
From Overlooked To Booked
The BPC was formed in 2020 in response to the civil unrest that took place across the nation. In wanting to make an impact through the entertainment business, the team of executives and leaders came together to help breathe life back into the Black spirit by creating inclusion and opportunities for Black promoters.
Comprised of the top Black, veteran, and independent live entertainment promoters, the BPC aims to take the unsung heroes from often-overlooked to steadily booked.
Disrupting The Industry
Leading with six of the nation’s top independent concert promotion and event production companies, the collective is pushing the culture to center stage by putting power back into the hands of the ones who created it.
The BPC is a part of the cultural movement of “buying back the block,” as CMO Troy Brown describes it, by creating more jobs and increasing visibility of Black indie promoters based on the indispensable value that they bring to the entertainment business.
The company is not only working to amplify promoters’ voices but is also looking to recognize Black talent overall at a national and global level.
“So just not other independent promoters, but other media and entertainment properties, tech outlets like AfroTech and those that attend the AfroTech [conference],” Brown said.
He continued: “Young Black content creators, app developers, data scientists. We’re looking to partner with all those folks because we see what we’re building here is a long tail platform. We’re looking to take advantage of all the connection points associated with what we’re bringing to consumers.”
The Road To More Wins
After starting their mission in 2020, the BPC has recently garnered their first major partnership with Grammy award-winning singer-songwriter Maxwell. In early 2022, the neo-soul icon is kicking off his tour, “The Night Tour,” with R&B greats Joe and Anthony Hamilton.
The majority of the BPC has worked with Maxwell before his upcoming concert, but the collective cultivated a cultural shift that drove him and his team to take a chance with the partnership.
“We have to just give all the respect in the world to Maxwell and his team for being the first one,” Guidry shared. “I can’t even say what that means to have a brand like that to be the first one to say ‘I give you guys my whole next album and my brand. You’re going to be the person that puts my brand in a box presented to the world coming out of the pandemic.’ But, it started with the culture and it’s being moved and progressed forward by the culture.”
With the BPC’s major partnership, the team hasn’t lost sight of wanting local venues and talent to also join in the ride of wins. The company will be working to partner with smaller venues and cultivate new talent to help create more work for the Black demographic and put more money into the community.
Top 100 Promoter’s