Famed NYC Dance Music Manager Gary Salzman Has Died of COVID-19

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Gary Salzman (pictured), a co-founder of New York City-based BIG Management, has passed away, according to reports on social media. It is believed that Salzman succumbed to the fast-spreading coronavirus disease (COVID-19) that has killed at least 42,081 people around the world as of today.

Salzman co-launched BIG in the late ’80s with Joe Koppie. His company managed top DJ/producers such as Todd Terry, Tony Humphries, David Guetta, Ray Roc, Chris Willis, Jason Nevins and Tony Moran.

BIG evolved into a full-service music marketing company and management consulting firm.

Salzman is being remembered fondly on social media by artists and fellow music business colleagues from all over the world.

This is a breaking story and will be updated as we learn more.

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DJ/Writer/Dance Music Champion Jonty Skrufff Has Died

Jonty Skrufff

We’re gutted to report that Jonty Skrufff, a DJ, writer and dance music industry titan, has died.

The news of his passing on March 6 at Charité hospital in Berlin was posted on Facebook by his wife, Fidelity Kastrow.

According to the post, “Jonty had been battling cancer but kept his diagnosis confidential until days before his death, so nobody would treat him differently and to be able to continue to live the life he so loved.”

She added, “Jonty loved DJing, bringing joy to others, making and sharing music, reading, writing, spreading knowledge, sharing ideas, initiating change and trends, counterculture, clubbing, connecting (with) people, dressing up, autonomy, integrity, supporting & inspiring others, traveling, cycling, going to the gym, chilling on his chaise longue, cooking, great food and living as an original punk.”

I had the pleasure of communicating with Jonty countless times over the year. I interviewed him a few times, and on several occasions, he interviewed me for a story in his newsletter.

In 2013, Jonty recorded a Big Shot Guest Mix. Here’s what I wrote about him:

We profiled UK scribe/electro DJ Jonty Skrufff in the print edition of Big Shot ages ago, and he’s continued to do good things. Jonty’s popular e-zine digs for stories where most journos fear to tread, and his mixing career has won him fans in all corners of the world. After returning home to the UK after a DJ gig last week in Berlin, he whipped up the latest installment of the star-studded Big Shot Guest Mix series, which has presented flawless mix sessions from Ben Watt, Junior Sanchez, Trouble & Bass and The Presets, among others. On this rockin’ 60-minute journey, Jonty includes many of his current favorites, as well as a tune from Fidelity Kastrow (she spins at Tresor and is a resident at Torture Garden), a song he co-produced with Mark Reeder.

There’s been an outpouring of condolences on social media from DJs, producers and industry execs. Below are just a few.

Rest in peace, Jonty.

https://twitter.com/NourRidaoui/status/1240241879951773701

Brooklyn Producer Photay Responds to COVID-19 By Releasing ‘On Hold’ Ambient LP Benefitting Food Bank For NYC

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Calamities like the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic impact the most vulnerable communities the hardest. Case in point is the spate of panic food shopping and hoarding, which has resulted in a sharp decline in contributions to local food banks. Significantly fewer donations have forced some food banks to buy food from their limited cash reserves to replenish their dwindling stocks. It’s a bad situation that will only grow worse as charitable giving could decline in the wake of a full-blown recession.

In a response to the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on Big Apple residents in need, New York City-based produced Evan Shornstein – who records under the Photay alias – will donate 100 percent of proceeds from sales of his new ambient album, On Hold, to Food Bank For New York City, a nonprofit that supports New Yorkers in need of “nutritious food and hope for a better future.”

“I felt an urgency to self-release this project ahead of schedule as the concept feels very relevant to the current state of our world,” says Shornstein of the pay-as-you-wish (or nothing at all) album whose theme is derived from a process of recording “on hold” or “call waiting” music.

Shornstein adds, “Most of our lives are currently on hold. I hope this music provides you comfort and hope during this uncertain time and beyond.”

“Please donate if it is within your means. Otherwise, this record is 100% free for all.”

Tracklisting:
1. Prelude in MHz
2. Peace in the Era of Telecommunication
3. Please Hold
4. Traversing Frequency Bands
5. Holding Pattern
6. The Strength of Our Signals
7. Roaming
8. How May I Help You?
9. Peak Bandwidth
10. Hold On
11. March 10th, 1876
12. Peace in Perpetuity

photay-on-hold-ambient-LP

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Winter Music Conference 2020 Canceled Due to Coronavirus Fears

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Winter Music Conference has been canceled in lieu of the coronavirius outbreak, which has led to several U.S. states, including Florida, to declare state of emergencies.

The move to not hold WMC 2020 comes after Ultra Music Festival and SXSW both canceled their events to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Miami Music Week, a week-long series of club events not associated with UMF or WMC, will continue as scheduled.

Here is a statement posted by WMC regarding the cancelation of the 2020 event:

Due to the Florida Governor’s declaration of a public health emergency and the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention’s Interim Guidance for COVID-19, the 35th edition of Winter Music Conference, originally scheduled for March 16 – 19, 2020, will be rescheduled.

After spending the past ten months preparing for the event with our team, panelists and event partners, we are profoundly disappointed, however, there is nothing more important than the health, safety and physical well-being of our attendees and employees.

If you are a current badge holder, please stand by for direct communication with further updates.

No paywalls, free to all. Help us remain 100% independent and unbiased. Please give to Big Shot by making a secure one-time donation to help us continue covering DJ culture and electronic music like we’ve done since 2003.