Pinky Gonzales began his career in the ’90s in the San Francisco Bay Area, managing and promoting local artists. A fateful tour through Europe with a Latin Disco Punk band in the spring of ’98 landed him the strange yet memorable nickname “Pinky,” which he has been known by ever since.
As the new millennium approached, he moved to Los Angeles, where he helped to establish Patronet, a groundbreaking artist subscription service created by Todd Rundgren and legendary artist manager/label executive Danny Goldberg. Its clients included Rundgren himself, along with Scott Weiland of Stone Temple Pilots and Velvet Revolver, pop/rock group Sugar Ray and Vin Scelsa, a pioneering radio DJ from NYC.
A few years later, an opportunity drew Gonzales to the Nashville-based Country Music Association, where he assumed a role in Business Development, managing partner relations with Yahoo!, eBay, Microsoft and others in support of the CMA Awards and CMA Music Fest. It was in this capacity that he became aware of the Nashville music industry’s need for digital media, marketing and development services.
In September 2001, he founded Artist Media Group to address those needs. DreamWorks Records was the first of several high-profile clients to sign on, along with Rascal Flatts, Kelly Clarkson and Capitol Records soon thereafter. The company specialized in fan management services, ranging from street team and grassroots marketing to fan club development and merchandise offerings.
Artist Media Group joined forces with echomusic in April 2005, at which point he became a partner of the combined entity. The company grew 400% during the next two years, attracting clients of all genres including Alicia Keys, Kanye West, Janet Jackson, Korn, the Jonas Brothers, Bon Jovi, Godsmack and many others, and extended its country roster to include Keith Urban, Faith Hill, Brooks and Dunn, Sugarland, Jason Aldean and Brad Paisley.
Echomusic was acquired by Ticketmaster in February 2007. Gonzales spent the next year managing the transition and helping to integrate the echo business model into TM’s billion-dollar global market strategy.
In fall 2008, he joined Belmont University as an adjunct professor, establishing a course in brand development, community management and digital media marketing. Now in its fourth semester, the program is among the “most recommended” by those who have completed the Entertainment Industry Studies major.
In addition to teaching, he now works on a broad range of business development, marketing and technology initiatives.