Dante Ross interviewing Special Guest

16:45 - 17:45 · Thursday 13th September 2018

Dante Ross (born October 11, 1967 in San Francisco, California[1]) is an American music industry executive, A&R representative, and producer. He was named one of the top-25 greatest A&R representatives in hip hop [2] by Complex magazine. Ross started his A&R career at Tommy Boy records, at which he signed and handled the careers of such artists as De La SoulQueen Latifah, and Digital Underground.[3] Ross was then hired by Elektra Records and was the first person ever hired by a major label to be specifically a hip hop A and R man. Ross became the architect of Elektra Records hip hop roster where he signed acts Brand NubianGrand PubaPete Rock & C.L SmoothKMDLeaders of the New SchoolBusta Rhymes and Ol’ Dirty Bastard.[4] He is currently a SVP of A&R ADA Music the independent distribution company owned by the Warner Music Group. He also serves as SVP of A and R for the newly re-activated Asylum records.

Dante Ross was born in San Francisco to political activist parents John Ross and mother Norma. He moved to New York City in 1967. Ross was raised by his mother raised in New York’s Lower East Side, then a predominately Puerto Rican neighborhood, where his mother was a nursery school teacher. Ross grew up skateboarding, writing graffiti and going to see punk rock shows with teenage friends who would eventually become members of The Beastie BoysThe Cro-Mags and Luscious Jackson. He hung out at Manhattan nightclubs such as The Mudd Clubb, Danceteria and The Roxy nightly while still in High School in the early 80’s. He frequently went to see live music at CBGB’s where he often saw The Bad Brains who befriended a young Ross. Hanging out in NYC’s Lower East Side during the early 80’s Ross became friends with many notable punk and hardcore groups as well as various future creatives. He credits this along with watching his friends The Beastie Boys success with him wanting to work in the music business.

Ross entered the music business when he was hired as a messenger at the behest of his friends The Beastie Boys and their road manager Sean Carasov[5] at the newly formed Def Jam Recordings.[6] Ross was mentored by Lyor Cohen and Russell Simmons for several years before going to work as an A&R person at Tommy Boy records.[7] This was followed by an 8-year stint at Elektra where he was considered one of the architects of the golden age of Hip Hop.[8] Ross has been in his career an office messenger, a tour manager, an A&R person, a record producer, a notable songwriter and artist manager.[9]

As a producer, Ross was a third of the Stimulated Dummies production team with partners John Gamble and Geeby Dajani.[10] The production team worked with artists such as Brand Nubian, Grand Puba, Leaders Of The New School3rd Bass, and Del Tha Funky Homosapien. Gamble and Ross later went on to produce sans Dajani SantanaEverlast (working on both the multi platinum album Whitey Ford Sings the Blues and the gold follow-up Eat at Whitey’s), and many others.[11] Ross earned a Grammy in 1998 for his work on Carlos Santana’s Supernatural.[12] Ross’ production work has also appeared on Eminem’s 8 Mile soundtrack, on which he produced and co-wrote two songs that featured Macy Gray and Young Zee. Ross has also been enlisted for his remixing skills, which have been featured on songs by Korn as well as a plethora of other artists in genres as diverse as Nu metal, Dancehall, Neo-Soul and Hip-Hop.[13] Mr. Ross is credited with signing Macklemore, Lil DickyMade in TYO  and Ugly God while at ADA all who have gone on to earn Gold or Platinum status.

All our 2018 speakers and guests


Main Conference Hall, Estrella Damm
Carrer del Rosselló 515, Barcelona 08025


New York/Barcelona, October 14, 2021. The Future Music Forum: Barcelona has merged with Music Industry City. The two firms will pool their resources to form Nybac Media Inc., which will supervise digital broadcasting, live events, and digital communities for its Music Industry City division.

Founded by music industry veterans, Peter Schwinge, former Partner and General Manager of New Music Seminar, and Founder of Moving Target Group, Mike McCready, Co-founder and CEO of Music Xray, and Niall Doorley, founder of Future Music Forum: Barcelona, Nybac Media provides an international platform that includes a broadcast network with the flagship, Music Industry News at Noon; audio drop-in talk shows and podcasts; year-round digital events; community building on the Music Industry City (MIC) website; and live events including the Future Music Forum: Barcelona.

According to Peter Schwinge, CEO and President, “This merger is a great opportunity for both companies as it will allow them to work together on projects more efficiently while expanding their reach to other areas globally where they would not have had access before. We are able to provide more opportunities for our users and partners and provide them with an opportunity to reach new audiences through the network.”

Nybac Media will rely on their deep industry connections to provide musicians access to industry experts through the MIC platform; equip the next generation of the music industry with tools, education, and networks; foster high-level discussions to affect positive change; and increase partners' access and visibility to the industry. 

“I'm delighted to announce our new partnership. I've spent the last 12 years building the Future Music Forum into what it is today, and perhaps the last 5-6 years actively seeking the ideal partner. It's ironic that it emerged at a time when the events business was perhaps in its most fragile state in living memory. I'm excited to see what we can do to help so many people advance in their careers as the industry begins to bounce back.” said Niall Doorley, Vice President and Head of Global Events.

The Music Industry City website has features for artists and people in the industry to interact in real time through communities and forums, live events, and a metaverse. The site also provides educational resources, online courses, and talks from industry leaders; health and wellness topics specifically tailored to the music industry; a personal and professional development section; a music discovery zone; and a local media outlet showcasing members and partners.

Nybac Media has offices in New York and Barcelona. The next, in-person Future Music Forum conference is set to take place in Barcelona on September 20-22, 2022.