THC Spotlights is shining a light on creative technologists who are helping to solve problems in their community and doing it with maximum impact.
Melanie McClain, a Chicago native now relocated in New York, is a dynamic curator, thought leader, BAYC (Bored Ape Yacht Club) member and early adopter to the possibilities of blockchain technology. During her time as an A&R at Secretly Publishing McClain was responsible for talent scouting and the commercial development of the recording artists on their roster. She made it her mission to strengthen and diversify Secretly Publishing’s roster with Black alternative voices for the 2 years she was at their helm. Over time, she has developed a remarkable ability to recognize emerging talent because at her core she deeply understands culture and trends.
Shifting and pulling on experiences from many disciplines (Pre-Med, Pre-Law, A&R, Strategist, Tastemaker, etc.), McClain has freelanced as a creative strategist and content creator for the past 13 years and brings a much-needed perspective and diverse skillset that is authentic, informative and refreshing.
In the midst of the Covid Pandemic, she created her own burgeoning brand, Blurred Lines Community, using the audio app Clubhouse to help Black musicians learn about publishing, distribution, digital marketing, brand partnerships and blockchain from experts around the globe. Check out a list of accolades and accomplishments she's racked in thus far.
Prior to her role as Publishing A&R at Secretly, she managed talent, programmed over 100 playlists at YouTube Music, and was the head of Hip Hop and African music programming
Her job duties as the 1st Full Time Publishing A&R at Secretly Group (a leading independently owned music company) included scouting and signing artists to Secretly Publishing on all levels of the developmental spectrum
She has published content for multiple publications including Pitchfork, Saint Heron, Complex, and Consequence of Sound, and was an early champion for then unsigned artists like Megan Thee Stallion, DaBaby, G-Eazy, Lizzo, Juice WRLD, Brockhampton, Gunna, Lil Tecca, GoldLink, Petite Noir and Yella Beezy
Her work has concentrated on studying and analyzing trends, developing powerful marketing strategies and discovering the next cultural sensations
Wearing many hats as most curators in Web 3 do, she is also the Head of Community at P00ls, a leading community-centric decentralized exchange (DEX) for creator cryptocurrencies
She also temporarily held the Head of Culture at Airtime, an app that empowers people to create thriving online communities around shared interests, experiences and passions. She hosts Blurred Lines New Music Friday every Friday on Airtime at 9-10am ET
Areas she excels in include Content Creation/Copywriting, Talent Partnerships/Development
Some of her past clients include Justin Timberlake, Cardi B, 21 Savage, J Balvin, Childish Gambino, YouTube Music, Wrigley's and McDonald's plus more.
Keep an eye on her as she continues to move and shake in the entertainment and music industry!
Written by Brittany Wallace
Edited by Naomi Arroyo