2023 GNO Jobs Report: Explore the top occupations in the region

New Orleans Music Economy

A member of the New Orleans Music Economy works in a recording studio

New Orleans Music Economy Initiative

New Orleans is synonymous with music, and it would seem that we would have a deep music economy supporting this brand, creating jobs and wealth for its creators. In reality, while New Orleans is unmatched as a city for live music, when it comes to the business of music – IP management, production, publishing, artist management, law, finance – this happens in other cities.

As a result, the majority of jobs, wealth, and ultimately, most successful musicians, end up in cities like Nashville, Los Angeles, and New York – not New Orleans. The New Orleans Music Economy Initiative (NOME) is an economic development strategy to develop the rest of the music industry – with a focus on IP management – right here in New Orleans, where it belongs.

The vision for NOME is for New Orleans to have both the brand of America’s premier music city and a thriving music economy to sustain our artists and keep them here. Through NOME, New Orleans will capture the value of its musical culture and re-invest it at home.

GNO, Inc. partnered with Sound Diplomacy to conduct a gap analysis, policy assessment, and economy impact assessment to create the action plan for New Orleans to fulfill its vision for a robust music economy.

Through the New Orleans Music Economy Initiative, New Orleans will capture the value of its musical culture and re-invest it at home.

NOME Steering Committee

Business and music leadership come together

The New Orleans Music Economy Initiative is spearheaded by a group of regional business and music leaders, with international experience and reach, including:

  • Michael Hecht – Greater New Orleans, Inc.
  • Tara Hernandez – JCH Properties+
  • Bill Hines – Jones Walker
  • Charles Gaspard – First Horizon
  • Walt Leger, III – New Orleans & Co.
  • Jim McCormick – Staff Songwriter, BMG Rights Management; Music Industry Studies Instructor, Loyola University New Orleans
  • PJ Morton – Morton Records, Maroon 5
  • Louis David – New Orleans Business Alliance
  • Raj Smoove – DJ, Producer, and Audio Engineer
  • Jay Weigel – Composer; Music Director; Producer; Loyola University New Orleans Film Scoring Instructor
  • Reid Wick – The Recording Academy; The GRAMMY Awards

The team has partnered with Sound Diplomacy, a global consulting firm and international leaders of the “music cities” movement. Using cutting edge research and data-driven methodology, Sound Diplomacy develops strategies that deliver economic growth and social development by creating vibrant and sustainable music ecosystems. Sound Diplomacy has produced music economy strategies for London, Brisbane, Vancouver, Barcelona, and many other major cities around the world.

Note: Learn more about Sound Diplomacy’s process here in New Orleans.

“For so long we had to leave. I was a part of a long list of songwriters and musicians who had to go elsewhere to flourish in the business of music. I believe with NOME, we’re going to create an environment where not only will you want to stay, but you’ll be able to thrive right here in New Orleans.” P.J. Morton, GRAMMY-Award winning musician, singer, songwriter and record producer

“We have too much food here for anybody to be a starving artist. It hurts me to see artists have to leave here to go to a Nashville, to go to an Atlanta or Los Angeles. Our artists should be able to provide for themselves by their craft in their city beyond the live music we’re known for.” DJ Raj Smoove, local producer and artist

“While New Orleans has a global brand for music, that brand has largely been based on live performance and festivals. By developing and executing an action plan to build the underlying business of music in Greater New Orleans – IP Management, Agents, Publishers, etc. – we will not only keep our musicians here, but we will build real jobs and wealth.” Michael Hecht, President & CEO of GNO, Inc.


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