Steve Azar & The Kings Men

An album and documentary that I co-produced is now available on Stingray Quello. Here is how it came about:

In April of 2016, Steve Azar became the first artist to record a full-length studio album at the legendary Mississippi landmark, Club Ebony. A long time in the making, and his first record in 5 years, Steve cut 13 new original tracks. The club, now belonging to the B.B. King Museum, was turned into a recording studio capturing the rich history and vibe of the room and in turn creating inspirational performances on the record. The album, Down At The Liquor Store, was made with the participation of The Kings Men, a group of musicians who backed B.B. King, Elvis Presley and other musical Kings. The combination of Steve's Delta songwriting approach and the band's musical background has created a unique and soulful sound. Down At The Liquor Store is an authentic Delta Soul record.

Making Your Own Pie with The Ingredients You've Got: Episode 1 of James Newcomb's Musicpreneur Podcast

James interviewed me for his Musicpreneur Podcast. In fact, he interviewed me for Episode 1 which was quite the honour. 

"Here’s a brief outline of this interview with Aaron. Aaron tells the story of turning back a mere 200 meters from the summit of the highest mountain in South America and how this is an allegory for defining success as a MusicPreneur. This decision to turn back led to Aaron saving the life of a fellow…"

James Newcomb

For the original post click here.

Want to stand out? Don't fit in.

I was interviewed a while back for WeSpin Recipes Podcast. I really enjoyed our conversation and hope you do to! 

"You are about to hear a story on how far creating your own path instead of doing what you’re “supposed to” can get you. The story is about a successful US country artist, golfer, philanthropist, and public speaker Steve Azar, and it’s told by his manager, Aaron Bethune.

Aaron is the founder of Play It Loud Music, Above the Noise and JAM, among numerous other projects. He’s also the author of “Musicpreneur: The Creative Approach to Making Money in Music”, which we covered in detail in the WeSpin Recipes episode number 29, over a year ago.

After Aaron discovered that the key to everything Steve had been doing was the state of Mississippi, they turned it into a series of mind-blowing opportunities. From helping the state to improve its public transportation system, to becoming the first Music & Culture Ambassador of Mississippi (the title didn’t even exist before), recording an album and filming a documentary with BB King’s band in a legendary venue – these are just some of the events which the dedication and creative thinking led Steve and Aaron to.

Listen to the episode for all the details, as well as Aaron’s tips for up-and-coming creatives."

Andrew Apanov

Click here for the original post. 

Interview with Yahoo Brazil

A little while back I was interviewed by Casino Gobbet from Yahoo Brazil. The original article is in Portuguese and can be viewed here.

I really enjoyed the questions Casino had and I thought you may find interesting reading our conversation. 


Cassaino Gobbet: The consumption of music certainly hasn’t decreased, but revenue streams are. Is that correct? 

Aaron Bethune: That is correct, however it would also depend on what you are counting as revenue streams. Physical sales have decreased while streaming services are gaining members rapidly and paid subscribers are also increasing. Vinyl is making a resurgence. Certainly none of these revenue streams can take the place of the record sales of say ten years ago. That being said there are far more opportunities than ever before to find creative ways to monetize music and the music experience. So in that regard I would say that at least when it comes to new available revenue streams the opportunities are increasing.

Overcoming The Mountain with Aaron Bethune | Roar Conversations

I was recently interviewed by Adam Spencer for his Roar Conversations. In fact I was the first to be interviewed for this new conversational podcast. Below is the interview. To read the original post click here



In this exclusive interview with Aaron Bethune, the founder of PlayItLoudMusic tells the story of a near death experience toward the summit of Cerro Aconcagua, the highest peak outside of Asia. Find out how the aftermath of the climb shaped Bethune’s plans as an entrepreneur and an individual. Topics covered include finding strength within yourself, letting go of material desires, taking small steps to accomplish larger tasks.


A globetrotter from an early age, Montreal native Aaron Bethune found a passion in music at a young age. After a life altering experience just a few hundred meters short of the Cerro Aconcagua summit, Bethune was inspired to actualize his dreams to get involved in the music business. He is the founder of PlayItLoudMusic, using his expertise in music and business to become a creative consultant, mentor artists, and license music for public use.

Aaron is the author of Musicpreneur: The Creative Approach to Making Money in Music. If you'd like to find out more about Aaron Bethune and his creative endeavors, visit his website.  


How is living life a lot like climbing a mountain?

What is “fear of the summit”?

The fragility of man and the transience of life.

Learning to enjoy the moment and appreciate simple things

How can you benefit from a change of perspective?


3:02 Pseudo Introduction of Aaron by Adam

7:17 “We’re all climbing mountains, it’s just some of us set the summit out of reach”

09:00-14:18  Story of (not) climbing summit of mountain, saving Mike

14:01 “You’re such a fragile thing….” (talking about how small we are in the world)

16:15-19:25 “Fear of the summit”, (fear of getting what you want, learning to value self)

20:10-21:55 Guiding through a canoe metaphor (following “the current”, us getting in way of self)

22:12-23:21 “How will I get off the top of a mountain??” (one step at a time)

23:55-24:35 “It doesn’t equate to happiness” (enjoying the moment/anti-materialism)

26:26 “it’s all about perspective...every moment can be seen in different lights”

28:08 “...the fact is that every moment has led to this one...” (you are where you’re meant to be)

29:00 “you can choose to see all of the opportunities that exist or put on the blinders”

32:23-32:58 “operating from ‘how’” (difference between how and why)

43:05-44:55 Jumping off of the dock analogy (getting over fear of change/impact)

Recent interview for Australia's Morning Roar


Generally 7:50am. Sometimes earlier. It seems to be my internal alarm. If I am traveling I tend to get up around 6am so as to hit the gym before my day starts.


a) I look over at my wife and remind myself how lucky I am to be where I am. These days I look at my 6 month old daughter too… and sometimes my 5 year old son if he’s somehow got into they bed during the early hours of the morning. That’s the personal stuff. b) Then I check my emails and schedule of events for the day. c)Then I head to the gym to work with my personal trainer. 


Branding is so far-reaching and penetrates so deeply into the essence of what we do that essentially everything we do becomes our brand.

The value of music has never changed—it is the format in which we purchase it that has changed. The value of music is the experience it gives us and the emotional connection we have to it. It is the memories it brings back and the moments it embellishes. So the true value of a band is not just the amount of units and downloads the group sells, but the overall value—including the money-generating aspect (“monetization”)—of the band’s brand experience.

Storytelling & Creating Our Own Story

Storytelling is a primal form of communication. It has traditionally been a way of passing on knowledge, lessons, events and experiences from generation to generation. Stories are the threads that tie us to ancient traditions, legends, myths, even symbols, and they connect us to a larger self and universal truths. Through stories we can experience extreme situations and intense emotions with a safety net.