Beat Factory founder Ivan Berry honoured at Oshawa Music Awards with Lifetime Achievement/Hall of Fame selection

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Published July 21, 2021 at 3:53 pm


You would be hard-pressed to find many musical artists in this country who haven’t benefited from the guidance and talents of Ivan Berry, one of three OMA Lifetime Achievement/Hall of Fame inductees this year.

Berry, who hails from St. Kitt’s, made history when he signed Michie Mee to an international record deal – the first Canadian Rap artist to earn that honour – and has signed more Hip-Hop and R&B artists to record and publishing deals than any other music manager in Canada.

The Beat Factory brand, which he co-founded in 1982 and turned into a record label in 1996, was a go-to destination for many of Canada’s hottest urban artists, such as Keshia Chante, Tom Green, Glenn Lewis and Dream Warriors.

The artists he has worked with, which also include international pop superstars like Shiloh and Wyclef Jean, have sold millions of records worldwide. In fact, he is responsible for more international releases for Canadian Hip-Hop and R&B artists, and more Hip-Hop and R&B record sales worldwide, than any other Canadian artist manager.

Berry served as an executive with Sony BMG Canada from 2000-2004, guiding artists as diverse as Shawn Desman, Sloan, Treble Charger, Kalen Porter and The Guess Who.

He is also the co-creator of the annual St. Kitts Music Festival, which takes place each June and has attracted major acts as Kool & The Gang, Chaka Khan, Ludacris, DMX, Hugh Masekela, Boyz II Men and many more.

A long-time instructor at Durham College in Oshawa, as well as the Harris Institute of the Arts, he is also a frequent guest speaker at industry conferences around the world.

Berry received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Urban Music Association of Canada in 2000.

Photo: the Caribbean Camera

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