Milan Ackerman/Jacob Brodovsky

By MYRON LOVE
When The Jewish Post & News last checked in with Milan Ackerman ten years ago, he was running a retail store specializing in purses in Charleswood. Today, as the manager for Russ, one of the world’s hottest rap performers, he is on top of the world – and travelling all over the world.

 

 

 

 


As Ackerman, the son of Ron Ackerman and Sharon Delbridge, notes, he comes from a musical family. His zaida, Saul Fink, is our community’s oldest chazan, Kinzey Posen and Shayla Fink are his uncle and aunt and first-cousin Ariel Posen is one of our city’s top guitar players. So it should come as no surprise that after closing the store, Ackerman turned to music.
“I saw an opportunity,” he says. “Ten years ago, no one was bringing up and coming hip hop artists to Winnipeg. I started booking acts and became so successful that soon after I was booking acts across Canada.”
In 2013, he further expanded his horizons by relocating to L.A., where he founded M-Pack Entertainment Inc, a Booking / Management / Consulting firm, to meet the growing market demand. He started working with numerous artists, some established and some in development. “I played every role there was to play in the business, ” he says. By the time he had found Russ (end of 2014) he was knowledgeable and had enough resources in place to help the emerging artist break out.
“I immediately knew that he had infinite potential,” Ackerman says. “I was blown away by his music sonically, and the confidence he had in everything he was doing What I also appreciated about him was that he was able to do it all. Not only did he write the songs himself, he also produced, mixed, mastered and engineered them himself.”
On his own, Ackerman reports, Russ had released 11 albums - but still hadn’t really gotten noticed. Russ decided to change his approach - instead of releasing new music by putting out albums to releasing singles to gain attention from the consumers.


That’s where Ackerman entered the picture.
Russ released a song a week for 96 consecutive weeks. As reported in an interview with Russ in the showbiz newspaper, Variety, in March 2018, before Russ would agree to signing on with Milan as his manager, he challenged the young former Winnipegger to connect the up and coming rapper with Cara Lewis, ”one of the most powerful booking agents in the world”.
Ackerman was successful. Lewis is now Russ’s agent, while Ackerman is his manager and the rest – as they say, is going to be history.
Ackerman is now working exclusively with Russ – and loving the ride. He reports that Russ made the Forbes “Hip-Hop Cash Kings” list last year, earning himself $15 million with demand worldwide. Ackerman has recently moved to Atlanta, his client’s home base, to be closer to Russ and expand his enterprises.
The still young Winnipeg entrepreneur adds that M-Pack Entertainment has recently brought on Milan’s younger brother, Jared Ackerman, as a new addition to the team. Jared spent the last few years serving in the elite combat paratroopers unit in the Israel Defense Forces. Once he finished his service he was on board a flight to join Milan and Russ in their vision for success.


Former all-Jewish band member Jacob Brodovky embarks on solo career


Two years ago, this writer chronicled the rise of Kakagi, a then-relatively new folk-rock band on the local scene, all of whose members were longtime BB Camp veterans. The band consisted of brothers Jacob and Max Brodovsky, Jesse Popeski and Jonathan Corobow. The foursome, with Popeski and Jacob Brodovsky on guitar, Corobow on bass, and the younger Brodovsky on drums, formed Kakagi in the fall of 2016, after Jacob Brodovsky had returned from university in Toronto.
The band broke up late last year - after the release of two EPs and three tours of western and eastern Canada, leaving singer/songwriter/guitar player Jacob Brodovsky to go it alone. “Breakups are never ideal, but it was amicable and we all agreed it was the right decision,” Brodovsky notes.

Last month, he released his first solo EP. The venue was The Tallest Poppy, a restaurant on Sherbrook operated by Talia Syrie, and a place where Brodovsky also works as a waiter.
“The event was sold out,” Brodovsky reports. “Sales for the EP have been strong.”
His EP –“Sixteen Years” – is a compilation of five songs, some written before Kakagi was formed and the others composed by Brodovsky after the break-up. Brodovsky notes that his brother, Max, and Jonathan Corobow played backup for the EP.
Brodovsky is hoping to put out a second EP in the fall with all-new songs he has written. For the summer, he is the facilities director at BB Camp. In the fall, he is also looking forward to touring Europe as a single act and following up that tour with a tour of Canada.