The Greatbatch School of Music will present a music industry panel discussion featuring Gordon Kerr (’88), CEO of Black River Entertainment, John Alexander, vice president of strategic marketing for Black River and Sarah Darling, a rising country music star. The event will take place on Friday, October 5, 2012, at 3 p.m. in the Recital Hall of the Center for the Arts and will include an open discussion about today’s music industry, a question and answer period and a performance of two songs by Sarah Darling. There will be a reception to follow this event and recital credit offered.
Located in Nashville, Tennessee, Black River Entertainment is known for preserving high quality in all of their endeavors. Recently featured in Mix Magazine for their innovative and “top-notch” studio, Black River will always strive for excellence. Gordon Kerr comments, “Excellence is excellence, whether you’re making a demo or you’re recording Miranda Lambert or Lee Ann Womack, Thompson Square or George Strait. For us, it's all about partnerships and providing opportunities for people to be able to feel like this is their creative home.”
Black River Records currently has four artists on their roster including Grand Ole Opry member, and one of country music's best-loved artists, Craig Morgan. Some of Craig's top hits include “Bonfire,” “Almost Home,” “Redneck Yacht Club,” “That’s What I Love About Sunday,” “International Harvester” and "This Ole Boy," the title track to his new album including the new hit, "More Trucks Than Cars." Rising star Sarah Darling's new single "Home To Me," is currently playing on SiriusXM's The Highway and was the best selling digital single by a new female artist in over a year! Fans can purchase “Home To Me” on iTunes and view the lyric video on YouTube. Vocal trio Due West recently made their debut at the Grand Ole Opry and is currently on tour. Please visit www.duewest.com for additional tour date information. Lastly, Alabama native Glen Templeton is currently in the studio working on his upcoming album and continues to tour and play dates countrywide. For more information on Glen, please visit www.glentempleton.com.
As the CEO of Black River Entertainment, Gordon Kerr is responsible for the overall leadership of Black River Entertainment and its subsidiary companies, including Black River Records, Black River Publishing, Black River Management, Black River at Sound Stage Studios, and Ronnie's Place Studio. Gordon has served in many leadership capacities over the past twenty-plus years, including adjunct professor of music and business and educational administrator. Since Black River Entertainment is a family-run company, Gordon sees his role as helping to shape the company and provide the necessary leadership and atmosphere. His goal is to provide a place where staff and artist alike can soar beyond their wildest dreams. Gordon’s son Mike (’15) is currently a Houghton student.
Throughout his 30-year career in the entertainment business, John Alexander has worked in many different sections of public relations. He has owned and operated entertainment companies, and has worked for both small and large corporations. After many years and diverse jobs, John finally returned to the music entertainment industry and to artist management, guiding the career of Black River Entertainment artist, Sarah Darling. John’s official title is vice president of strategic marketing and artist management.
Sarah Darling made a decision back in Iowa to take a leap of faith and chase her dreams. Upon arriving in Music City, Sarah worked diligently to hone her performing and songwriting, even appearing in several music videos. Since then, Sarah has released two #1 videos and made her “Grand Ole Opry” debut in February 2011. On August 18, 2012, Sarah performed on the legendary stage for the twentieth time. Today, affectionately called the “Music City's Newest Darling” by the Nashville Convention & Visitors Bureau and touted by the New York Times as a “sophisticated songwriter” with a “crisp, powerful voice,” Sarah Darling is confidently making her mark on the country music scene.