Motown Records Partners With Motown Museum, Techtown Detroit & Gener8tor To Launch Motown Musician Accelerator And Musictech Programs


Date: April 25, 2019

Contact: Brianna Batton

Phone: (313) 577-3122


Inaugural 12-Week Musician Program Launching This Summer Includes Grants For Artists To Grow Their Careers

7-Week Musictech Programs For Startups Will Be Operated From TechTown Detroit and Capitol Records Tower


Detroit-based musicians and Musictech startups will have an opportunity to work alongside Motown Records as part of two new programs to be offered at Motown Museum and TechTown Detroit. Sixty years after Berry Gordy founded the legendary label in Detroit, Motown Records remains committed to fueling the visions of the city’s music and entrepreneurial talent. The label will offer the Motown Musician Accelerator and gBETA Musictech programs in partnership with Motown Museum, Capitol Music Group, TechTown Detroit and gener8tor.

Motown President Ethiopia Habtemariam said, “Detroit has always been a creative hub for new talent and development.  With the Motown Musician Accelerator initiative, we have an opportunity to come back to Detroit and highlight the incredible talent that has always existed in their community.  Being able to provide the necessary support, funding and programming to help them grow in their careers is an absolute honor for us.”

Marc Byers, Motown Records’ General Manager, said, “Detroit, Motown’s original home, is at the verge of a true comeback. It’s our pleasure to be contributors in helping musicians with funding and programming to help their careers.”

The Motown Musician Accelerator will launch in the summer of 2019. A competitive selection and interview process helmed by industry leaders is now underway to narrow the applicants to four musicians or musical groups that will participate in the inaugural 12-week program.

Each of the four artists will receive individualized coaching, industry introductions and a $20,000 grant. The grants can be utilized to address needs that will further the artists’ musical careers, such as studio sessions, travel to meet industry leaders and collaborators, photoshoots, equipment and more. With sponsors covering the costs of the grants and operations, the program will be completely free for participating musicians, requiring no fees or royalties.

Quarterly workshop programming for the public will be a second component of the Musician Accelerator program. During sessions at TechTown Detroit, the Motown Museum, and the legendary Capitol Studios in Hollywood, CA, industry professionals will candidly address such topics as distribution, booking and touring, songwriting and more. The Motown Musician Accelerator will be operated by gener8tor, a turnkey platform for the creative economy that connects startups, entrepreneurs, artists, investors, universities and corporations.

The Motown Musician Accelerator and the grants it provides to the participating artists are funded by generous donations from the Esther Gordy Edwards Family Foundation, Microsoft and Hassan Bazzi, among others.

“In a city with an extraordinary musical heritage, this program leverages a powerful collaboration of leaders in technology, entertainment and culture,” said Robin Terry, CEO and Chairwoman of Motown Museum. “As the institution committed to preserving the Motown legacy—and continuing the tradition of entrepreneurship and opportunity that are cornerstones of the Motown story—we are honored to be a partner in this platform to provide the next generation of talented artists and entrepreneurs with the access, resources and mentorship to help them thrive.”

Concurrently, five Detroit-area startups will be selected to participate in a gBETA Musictech program, which will operate at TechTown Detroit under gener8tor’s “gBETA” model: a seven-week program requiring no fees and no equity. There will also be a gBETA Musictech program held at Capitol Records Tower with an additional five companies, sourced internationally. The selected companies will work closely with successful entrepreneurs, music industry experts, angel investors, venture capitalists, technologists, acclaimed producers, songwriters and influencers to develop strategies to grow, gain customer traction and pitch investors.

Applications are currently being accepted for the gBETA Musictech program, which is open exclusively to startups focused on music technology. This includes technologies related to sourcing, recording, production, distribution, marketing, touring, licensing and streaming as well as any technology or process innovations that could serve any component of the music industry.


“This is truly a deep, passion project for me. Being the son of an original Funk Brother, producer and arranger during early days of Motown, I grew up witnessing and experiencing the creation of music that is truly world-renowned and which will forever be the heartbeat of the great city of Detroit,” said Paul Riser, Director of Detroit Urban Solutions at TechTown Detroit. “But after observing the unfortunate decrease in investment for creative arts in schools, I’ve strived to not only be a part of the city’s revitalization, but to contribute to a renewed intersection of music, innovation and entrepreneurship. Working with Gener8tor, Motown Museum, Capitol Records, Universal Music and Motown Records to deliver a program that will pour so much into some of the very best talent of our city is nothing short of a dream come true.”


Individuals and organizations who would like to get involved with either program – as mentors, service providers, sponsors, etc. – are invited to reach out to Potential applicants can learn more and apply to the accelerator programs at and


A search is underway for a Director to lead the Motown Musician Accelerator. Desired candidates have existing experience and a strong network in the music industry, and ideally have already helped manage or develop talent. Interested candidates can apply at



About Motown Records:

There simply isn’t a name in music more synonymous with era-defining hits, star-making, and innovation than Motown. Started in Detroit with a dream and an $800 loan, Berry Gordy’s Hitsville USA became a cultural behemoth that swiftly hooked pop culture with a brand new beat.


The unmistakable, irrepressible sound of young America didn’t just dominate the charts – it crossed the racial divide during the social upheaval of the 1960’s. The touring cavalcade of superstars from Diana to Marvin to Smokey blazed trails through the U.S. and across the pond, breaking out of the chitlin circuit to hold court at Buckingham Palace. Under the umbrella of the Motown family, precocious child superstars Stevie Wonder and the Jackson 5’s Michael Jackson grew into game-changing legends.


And the hits and cultural influence didn’t stop: the label and its family of imprints explored new genres – like the psychedelia of the undisputed truth – as well as the political and social via black forum releases from the likes of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Stokely Carmichael. Trendsetting new Motown acts like the Commodores (and later, their star lead singer Lionel Richie), Rick James, and DeBarge gave new generations timeless hits and moments to remember.


About Motown Museum


Originally the recording studios and residence of Berry Gordy and Motown Records, and founded in 1985 by Esther Gordy Edwards, Motown Museum is a 501(c)(3) not for profit, tax-exempt organization in Detroit. The Museum is committed to preserving, protecting and presenting the Motown story through authentic, inspirational and educational experiences.


Announced in late 2016, the Motown Museum expansion will grow the Museum to a 50,000-square-foot world-class entertainment and education tourist destination featuring dynamic, interactive exhibits, a performance theater, recording studios, an expanded retail experience and meeting spaces designed by renowned architects and exhibit designers. When completed, the new Museum campus will have a transformative impact on the surrounding Detroit neighborhoods, providing employment, sustainability and community pride by serving as an important catalyst for new investment and tourism in the historic area.



About Capitol Music Group:

Capitol Music Group (CMG) is comprised of Capitol Records, Virgin Records, Motown Records, Blue Note Records, Astralwerks, Harvest Records and Capitol Christian Music Group, as well as Capitol Studios and the company’s independent label services and distribution division, Caroline.  Capitol Music Group is based in Hollywood, California in the iconic Capitol Tower.


Artists that record for CMG labels include: Erykah Badu, Banks, The Beach Boys, The Beatles, Beck, Bee Gees, Jon Bellion, BJ The Chicago Kid, Rosanne Cash, Christine and the Queens, City Girls, Neil Diamond, Robert Glasper, Halsey, Don Henley, Hillsong United, Niall Horan, Illenium, Judah And The Lion, Tori Kelly, Kem, Lil Baby, Lil Yachty, Charles Lloyd, tobyMac, Paul McCartney, Migos, NE-YO, NF, Norah Jones, Katy Perry, Gregory Porter, Maggie Rogers, Calum Scott, Bob Seger, Troye Sivan and Chris Tomlin.  For the U.S.:  5 Seconds Of Summer, Lewis Capaldi, Mabel, Bastille, Disclosure, Empire Of The Sun, Glass Animals, MNEK and Sam Smith.


Capitol Music Group is a division of Universal Music Group, which is a fully owned subsidiary of Vivendi.


About TechTown Detroit

TechTown is Detroit’s entrepreneurship hub, with a full suite of programs for both tech and neighborhood small businesses. TechTown works with businesses at all stages, helping startup, emerging and established companies develop, launch and grow. Since 2007, TechTown has supported 1900 companies, which created more than 1400 jobs and raised more than $130 million in startup capital. For more information, visit


About gener8tor

gener8tor is a turnkey platform for the creative economy that connects startups, entrepreneurs, artists, investors, universities and corporations. The gener8tor platform includes pre-accelerators, accelerators, corporate programming, conferences and fello wships focused on entrepreneurs, artists and musicians. gener8tor is a nationally ranked, GOLD-tier accelerator in the U.S. as ranked by the Seed Accelerator Rankings Project:



Motown Media Contacts:

Ambrosia Healy, Capitol Music Group /

MacKenzie Reynolds, Capitol Music Group /