On July 18, Belmont’s Mike Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business and industry partner ASCAP honored alumnus LeAnn Phelan (’89) as the 2013 recipient of the Music City Milestone Award (MCMA), which celebrates Belmont’s connection to Music Row. The award recognizes a Belmont graduate who has achieved success in the entertainment & music industry. The inaugural award was presented last year to Rusty Gaston, partner and general manager of This Music.
Phelan, who now co-heads the ASCAP creative team with Michael Martin, has a B.B.A. from Belmont University with an emphasis in music business. She serves on the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) board as well as the board of Possibilities! Inc., a not-for-profit whose mission is to provide funding for a variety of services to aid in the strengthening and rebuilding of individuals struggling with addiction, co-dependency, childhood abuse and more.
Phelan’s career in the music business has run the gamut. She has toured as a vocalist with Steve Winwood and held significant executive positions at Sony Records, 19 Entertainment, Windswept Pacific and Combustion Music. Over the years, her responsibilities have included songwriter management, production coordination, A&R, music supervision, song plugging and writer development. She has worked with a long list of artists and writers including Kings of Leon, Drew Ramsey, Ashley Gorley, Blair Daly, Gordie Sampson, Catt Gravitt, Steve McEwan and Miranda Lambert. She also worked as a preliminary judge on the “American Idol” audition tour for four seasons.
Belmont Instructor of Music Business and creative force behind the MCMA award, Dan Keen said, “With her insight, talent and passion, LeAnn has established a reputation as one of the most effective advocates for writers and artists in the business today and does so with the great integrity. Integrity, talent, passion, insight and effectiveness are all qualities that Belmont emphasizes as we shape the music business leaders of tomorrow. We are proud to hold her up as a role model for our current and future students.”
“LeAnn has been a driving force in the Nashville music community for many years, and I know I speak for all of us at ASCAP when I say we are truly honored to have her as a colleague and a mentor,” said ASCAP Nashville Membership co-head Michael Martin. “She is greatly loved by her ASCAP family, and we couldn’t be more proud of her.”
“All too often, success is recognized at the end of a career. We really want to take time to celebrate together the successes along the journey,” added Senior Director of Curb College Initiatives Sarah Cates. “LeAnn’s career path is an inspiring journey. Not only has she accomplished great things within her field of work, as a person, LeAnn is the real deal.”