BRUSSELS (CelebrityAccess) – The Independent Music Publishers and Labels Association (IMPALA) announced Wednesday (June 22) that the President of the Independent Music Producers Foundation (STOMP) and former IMPALA President, Kees van Weijen has been given the Outstanding Contribution Award for his tireless work in the European independent music sector.
IMPALA decided to recognize Kees at the last IMPALA board meeting, acknowledging his crucial role in the European independent sector over a career spanning close to 50 years. Kees has been active in the music industry since 1974. He acquired experience in every division of the entertainment industry with a focus on the music business.
Kees has worked as executive vice-president for Universal Music, as managing director of Mercury Records, MCA, and Polydor, and with artists such as INXS, KISS, Elton John, Dire Straits, Bon Jovi, Mary J. Blige, and Lionel Richie, among many others.
He then moved to the independent side of things, running Rough Trade Distribution until January 2017 and proving instrumental in establishing the Netherland indie association STOMP, of which he is still the president. In 2013, Kees was elected Chair of the IMPALA board, and in 2017, he was elected President of IMPALA, a position he successfully occupied until September 2021.
Helen Smith (Executive Chair of IMPALA): “Kees’ contribution to the European music sector has proven exceptional. This award highlights his commitment to the sector and his constant presence on the ground pushing the values of the independents all across Europe and helping to make central and Eastern Europe an integral part of IMPALA”.
Francesca Trainini (IMPALA Chair): “Kees served impeccably as Chair and President over four consecutive terms; he started the work of critical committees like Digital and Central and Eastern Europe, contributed generously to setting up associations in Eastern Europe, and supporting every initiative with great enthusiasm, no matter how small. In Kees, IMPALA and independent music have a staunch supporter and a great friend”.
Kees van Weijen: “I am very honored to receive this prestigious outstanding contribution award by IMPALA. Working with all the independent trade associations in Europe over the years has given me so much energy. In an ever-changing and evolving music industry, it has always been my goal to achieve a level playing field for all the artists, musicians, and label staff. Being recognized with this award gives me great pleasure, and I appreciate it a lot. I could not have achieved our goals without the support of IMPALA’s board, staff, and committees. It has always been a joint effort.”