Keynote Speakers

The Upstream Summit keynote speakers will set the tone for the day with personal, compelling and interactive discussions. The ideas they bring to the table are intended to spark smaller, more focused break-out sessions where attendees can dig into themes of globalization, data and analytics, streaming, and industry collision and how they relate to their artistry or industry. The keynote speakers bring to the stage unique approaches and experiences in the music industry and though they're different in genre, gender and generation—what they hold in common is a passion for creating music, supporting emerging artists and challenging the status quo. Buy passes now!
Interviewed by Elliott Wilson

Since its #2 Billboard Top 200 debut, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis’ debut album, ‘The Heist’ has reached Platinum sales, spawned two #1 hits, and earned the Seattle-based hip-hop duo four Grammy Awards including Best New Artist, Best Rap Album, Best Rap Song and Best Rap Collaboration. The duo earned a standing ovation for their historic performance of their gay rights anthem "Same Love" at the 56th Annual Grammy Awards in 2014. They played a rendition of their song with special guest Madonna while Queen Latifah officiated a wedding ceremony for 33 couples.

In 2016, Grammy-Award winning rapper Macklemore and producer Ryan Lewis self-released ‘This Unruly Mess I’ve Made.’ This fall, Macklemore released two solo songs: “Wednesday Morning” and “Drug Dealer” featuring Ariana DeBoo, which he performed on Ellen and The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon.

A lifelong Seattle resident, Macklemore has always believed in using his platform, resources and creative pursuits to have an impact on social justice issues.

Along with longtime partner Ryan Lewis, Macklemore launched the Hip Hop Artist Residency program in 2015, which has since become one of the preeminent opportunities for young aspiring artists in the region. For his support of marriage equality and human rights, Macklemore was honored with the ACLU of Washington's Civil Libertarian Award in October of 2014. Macklemore has taken up environmental causes as well, in June 2014 he was featured in a public awareness campaign to clean up Seattle's Duwamish River, a federal Superfund Site and one of the most toxic waste sites in the nation. Buy passes now!

Quincy Jones
Interviewed by Ahamefule J. Oluo

An impresario in the broadest and most creative sense of the word, Seattle native Quincy Jones' career has encompassed the roles of composer, record producer, artist, film producer, arranger, conductor, instrumentalist, TV producer, record company executive, magazine founder, multi-media entrepreneur and humanitarian. As a master inventor of musical hybrids, he has shuffled pop, soul, hip-hop, jazz, classical, African and Brazilian music into many dazzling fusions, traversing virtually every medium, including records, live performance, movies and television.

As producer and conductor of the historic "We Are The World" recording (the best-selling single of all time) and Michael Jackson's multi-platinum solo albums, Off The Wall, Bad and Thriller (the best-selling album of all time, with over 100 million copies sold), the most nominated Grammy artist of all time (79 nominations), the most Grammys of any living person (27 Grammys), and one of 17 people to complete an EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, Tony), Quincy Jones stands as one of the most successful and admired creative artist/executives in the entertainment world. Buy passes now!
Portia Sabin
In conversation with Tunji Balogun and Amaechi Uzolgwe

Dr. Portia Sabin is a cultural anthropologist who will lead a discussion with music industry leaders at the Upstream Summit. While working on her Ph.D. at Columbia University, she played drums, recorded, and toured with NYC band The Hissyfits. She founded Shotclock Management in 2004 and took over running the legendary punk record label, Kill Rock Stars, in 2006.

She is the host of a radio show and podcast about the music business called The Future of What. Sabin is a board member of the Pacific Northwest Chapter of The Recording Academy, chair of the board of the Rock ’n’ Roll Camp for Girls in Portland, and former chair of the board of the American Association of Independent Music (A2IM). Buy passes now!
Ron Jones
With Q&A by Jonathan Zwickel of CityArts

A professional composer with over 40 years of experience scoring many of the most popular series in broadcast world-wide such as Family Guy, Star Trek:The Next Generation and more. According to ASCAP he has about 40,000 compositions, most of which are for TV and Film.

A NW native, Ron returned recently to enjoy not only the beauty, but to build a state-of-the-art facility they named SkyMuse Studios located north of Seattle. Continuing his scoring work as well as conducting, leading two performing groups, and offering a Master Class Series.

He recently was guest conductor for the 50th Anniversary Concert for Star Trek: The Ultimate Voyage at Royal Albert Hall with the London Philharmonic. His L.A. based Influence Jazz Orchestra plays to sold-out venues, often performing with Seth MacFarlane. Ron is busy composing and producing CD soundtracks and albums for his Jazz Forest band.

Ron devotes a lot of time and energy to building the creative music community. He founded the Academy of Scoring Arts non-profit organization based in Los Angeles. He is active in speaking to college and university music students as well as professionals about ways to make their best music and build success in the music business. Buy passes now!