Seventeen top hit songwriters and producers from all music genres will be among those who take the stage at this year's ASCAP "I Create Music" EXPO.
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"We are elated to have some of today's top songwriters and producers joining us for this year's ASCAP 'I Create Music' EXPO," said ASCAP President Paul Williams. "Some have been creating music for a long time; others have just enjoyed the success of their first hit song. All will be excited and ready to share their personal experiences and hard-won knowledge with ASCAP EXPO attendees." Williams, winner of three Grammys and an Oscar, will moderate the EXPO's annual legislative panel and will provide EXPO attendees with wisdom from his 50-year songwriting career.
Songwriter/artist Aloe Blacc and Songwriters Hall of Fame member Desmond Child join an illustrious list of songwriters and producers who will be on hand for this year's EXPO. Blacc attended his first EXPO in 2010 and has cited it as a profoundly inspirational experience in the early stages of his career. Shortly after his first EXPO experience, he teamed up with Avicii for the breakout hit "Wake Me Up," which sold over 11 million units worldwide and is certified Platinum in 15 countries. Blacc also interviewed Bill Withers on the EXPO stage in 2015. Desmond Child has penned over seventy Top 40 singles throughout his storied career, working with the likes of Bon Jovi, Aerosmith, KISS and Cher. His credits include some of the most iconic hits of the 20th century: "Livin' On A Prayer," "Dude Looks Like A Lady," "Livin' La Vida Loca." Child's work holds strong on the pop charts to this day, with hits for Katy Perry and Selena Gomez, and last year, he celebrated his fifth decade of #1 hits with Zedd's "Beautiful Now."
Also on hand leading an EXPO panel session is hit Nashville songwriter Ashley Gorley. Gorley has penned thirty #1 songs, working with Carrie Underwood, Blake Shelton and Jason Aldean among other country luminaries. He is the recipient of four ASCAP Country Music Songwriter of the Year Awards and was named the 2016 Billboard Hot Country Songwriter of the Year. Back by popular demand, songwriter, arranger and producer Darrell Brown returns to the EXPO for his popular all-day Multi-Genre Song Feedback Sessions. Brown is a Grammy award winner who has written with Keith Urban, Faith Hill, LeAnn Rimes and Neil Young.
Bibi Bourelly and Deputy lead the next generation of hit songwriters at the 2017 "I Create Music" EXPO. The pair teamed up for Rihanna's "B**** Better Have My Money," writing and producing the smash hit respectively. Bourelly also wrote for Rihanna's 'Anti,' which hit #1 on the Billboard 200. Deputy served as a producer on J. Cole's 2016 record '4 Your Eyez Only,' which peaked at #1 on the Billboard 200 as well. Joining them are production trio Captain Cuts, who have co-written two #1 hits on Billboard's Alternative Music charts and last year won the ASCAP Pop Music Song of the Year Award for Walk The Moon's "Shut Up and Dance." Country songwriter Matt Jenkins has earned four chart-topping hits, including the recent #1 singles "Setting the World on Fire," recorded by Kenny Chesney featuring Pink, and "Song for Another Time," recorded by Old Dominion.
The EXPO has also confirmed London-based producer Harmony Samuels (Fifth Harmony, Ariana Grande, Chris Brown, Jennifer Lopez, Maroon 5) as a panelist, along with Ryan Leslie, a Grammy-nominated producer and musician who founded SuperPhone last year, a communication tool that allows fans to text directly with their favorite artists. Leslie has produced songs for Britney Spears, Beyoncé, New Edition, and was the architect behind Cassie's "Me&U," a number one R&B single that also reached number three on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2006.
The remaining panelists represent some of the industry's brightest young stars: Brett McLaughlin and Britten Newbill were co-writers on Daya's 2015 single "Hide Away," which reached #23 on the Billboard Hot 100. The EXPO also welcomes songwriter/producers Matt Rad and Steve James ("In the Name of Love," Martin Garrix feat. Bebe Rexha), Big Taste ("Company," Justin Bieber) and Rooty ("Too Little Too Late," Jojo).
Stay tuned for more panelist announcements in the coming weeks!