The recording academy, which hands out the Grammys, is governed by a board of trustees in a similar way to that of the motion picture and TV academies. At the recent spring meeting, producer/engineer/songwriter John Poppo was re-elected chair while A&R executive Ruby Marchand was re-upped as vice chair. In addition, music executive Terry Hemmings is to serve in the dual capacities of secretary and treasurer while Swan Songs founder and CEO Christine Albert is to be chair emeritus.
In announcing the results of the election, recording academy president and CEO Neil Portnow said, “The dedication and wisdom of these talented national officers will help us continue our mission of keeping the recording academy a premier organization within our vibrant industry. I look forward to working closely with such a diverse group of music professionals. The academy, our membership, and the entire music community will benefit from their many years of experience.”
Below, the impressive biographies of these four dedicated individuals.
With creative credits that span more than 30 years, Poppo is a multiplatinum-selling producer, engineer, songwriter, and musician who has worked in a wide range of musical genres. His credits include recordings by such artists as Toni Braxton, Mariah Carey, Al Green, Daryl Hall, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Chaka Khan, Annie Lennox, Madonna, ‘N Sync, Diana Ross, Seal, and Luther Vandross. A New York native, Poppo is currently focused on the development of new artists for his production/management company, Pop Productions Inc. He has served on the Recording Academy’s Board of Trustees for the past 14 years.
Throughout her three-decade career, Marchand has served as a global A&R professional who has discovered, developed, and nurtured artists across a multitude of genres. Having started her music career as a flutist in the Oberlin Jazz Ensemble, she now oversees the International Repertoire Initiative for Warner Music. Previously, Marchand was head of A&R for Ryko, a wholly-owned label of Warner Music Group, where she signed artists including Keb′ Mo′, Will Hoge, Fran Healy, Allison Moorer, and the Posies, among others. As VP of A&R at Warner Music International for almost 25 years, she worked with prominent and emerging artists throughout Europe, Southeast Asia, Latin America, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Marchand is an adjunct professor at the NYU Steinhardt Music Business program.
Hemmings is a 30-year music industry veteran who has helped shape and guide the careers of major recording artists and songwriters and also has been the executive producer on dozens of albums and multiple award-winning feature films. As president/CEO of Provident Music Group, a division of Sony Music Entertainment, his roster includes Casting Crowns, Kirk Franklin, Third Day, Steven Curtis Chapman, Tenth Avenue North, Red, Brandon Heath, Matt Maher, Israel Houghton, Marvin Sapp, and Fred Hammond. Hemmings also oversees Provident Films (War Room, Courageous and Woodlawn), Provident Distribution, Essential Music Publishing, Essential Artist Services and New York-based Descendant Records (The Lone Bellow and Colony House). A Leadership Music alumnus, he serves on multiple music industry boards.
Albert is an independent recording artist and founder/CEO of Swan Songs, an Austin, Texas-based non-profit that fulfills musical last wishes. Albert has released 12 independent albums as a solo artist and as part of the folk/Americana duo Albert and Gage. Albert and her husband and musical partner Chris Gage also own and operate MoonHouse Studio and MoonHouse Records in Austin. Albert is known for her “Texafrance” series of French/English recordings that combine her European heritage and Texas musical roots. She has appeared on “Austin City Limits,” was awarded Female Vocalist of the Year by the Kerrville Folk Festival Music Awards, and Superstar of Austin Music by the Austin Chamber of Commerce for her community service work.