College of Charleston SCHOOL OF THE ARTS

IN THE MIX Returns with New Host and EPIC Women

The College of Charleston Arts Management Program is excited to announce that world renowned drummer, percussionist, and two-time Grammy nominee Quentin Baxter has joined its faculty and will serve as the new host of the IN THE MIX speaker series, replacing Artist in Residence Emeritus Mark Bryan who has returned to recording and touring with Hootie and the Blowfish. The first installment of IN THE MIX will be held on Monday, Feb. 4, 2019 at 6:30 p.m. in the Recital Hall of the Simons Center for the Arts, 54 St. Philip St. The event, “EPIC WOMEN: INDUSTRY JOURNEYS OF TWO EXECUTIVES AT EPIC RECORDS,” will feature a live video conference with Traci Adams and Leah Bekele of Epic Records to discuss their career paths and their experiences as women in the music industry. This event is free and open to students and the public.

Traci Adams is the Executive Vice President of Promotion for Epic Records. She was featured in the September issue of Billboard as one of the 2018 R&B/Hip-Hop Power Players, recognized in Variety’s 2018 Hitmakers list, as well as Billboard’s Women in Music edition. Among her many accomplishments with Epic Records, Adams has contributed to the success of Future, Yo Gotti, DJ Khaled and French Montana; delivered 18 number one singles; was one of two executives chosen from Epic for Sony’s Fast Forward Leadership Program; was a panelist for Project Next Up, an organization that reflects Women’s Empowerment in the Entertainment Industry at Berklee Valencia; was the commencement speaker for her Alma Mater, Savannah State University; and was chosen by Billboard as “5 Executives to Watch.”

Leah Bekele is the Field National Director of Promotion and Lifestyle for Epic Records. Previously at Epic, she served as the National Director of Promotion and Lifestyle and as the Northeast/Mid-Atlantic Regional Promotions Manager. Before joining Epic Records, she planned special events for Atlantic Records, Def Jam, Interscope, Warner Music Group, and Lawless ENT and worked as the Operations Director and Events Coordinator of One Off Entertainment in Chicago.

Quentin Baxter has taught at the College of Charleston as an adjunct professor of jazz percussion since 1997. In his expanded role with the Arts Management Program, he will be able to share the full breadth of his music industry knowledge and experience with a greater student population as well as the Charleston community as a whole. Baxter is the CEO of his own music production company, Baxter Music Enterprises, LLC, as well as an active performing, and recording artist. He currently tours worldwide with several acts including award-winning vocalist and composer René Marie, Grammy-nominated vocalist Freddy Cole, and Ranky Tanky – the jazz-infused Gullah music ensemble which he co-founded in 2017. Baxter received the Elizabeth O’Neill Verner Governor’s Award for the Arts in 2017, South Carolina’s highest award given in the arts.

Since 2014, IN THE MIX has explored timely and engaging topics impacting the musical landscape on both a local and national level, all while exposing audience members to industry insiders with real world experience and insight. Recent sessions have examined songwriting compensation, the music streaming business model, and the emergent Charleston music scene, while former guest speakers include Darius Rucker, Cary Ann Hearst, and Jeff McClusky. A full list of previous and upcoming sessions can be found here.

The College’s Arts Management major offers students who are musicians or interested in working in the music industry the opportunity to pursue a Music Industry Concentration, with courses like History of the Recording Industry, Music in the Marketplace, Legal Aspects of the Entertainment Industry, and more. For information, visit or call (843) 953-6301.