We are an international team based in Los Angeles, London, Berlin, and Kyiv. Together we have over 100 years of experience in the global music industry. Though scattered around the world, we are united by shared values and ideas about the future of music. We believe that musical talent should know no borders.
Panel of Judges
Brian Malouf Senior Judge & Co-Founder
Brian Malouf is a multi-platinum American producer, engineer, and mixer who has worked with Michael Jackson, Queen, Madonna, Pearl Jam, Stevie Wonder and other world-known artists. Also serving as an executive at several major record labels over the years, his work has amassed a total of 53 gold, platinum, and double platinum records to date. Brian is a true veteran of the global music industry; he has enjoyed a 30+ year career on the production and executive side of the music business. In 1994-2005 he was Senior Vice President of A&R for RCA Records in New York, and later Vice President and Head of A&R at Walt Disney Records where he worked with artists such as Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Selena Gomez, and the Jonas Brothers. Brian now owns Cookie Jar Recording in Sherman Oaks, California and runs his practice as an independent producer.
Sacha Skarbek Songwriter & Producer
Sacha Skarbek is a British Ivor Novello Award two-time winner and Grammy-nominated songwriter, producer, film scorer and multi-instrumentalist. He is best known for writing James Blunt’s hit singles “You’re Beautiful” and “Goodbye My Lover,” as well as Miley Cyrus’' hit song “Wrecking Ball.” Skarbek has worked with artists such as Adele, Lana Del Rey, Jason Mraz, Tears for Fears, Duffy and many more. Skarbek loves working with new artists via his artist development company White Rope Music in West London.
Patrice Rushen Jazz Pianist, R&B singer & music director
Patrice Rushen is an award-winning musician and composer who is also one of the most sought after artists in the music industry. She is a classically-trained pianist who originally found success in the 70’s and 80’s with her signature fusion of jazz, pop and R&B. During this era, she composed and recorded the hit song “Forget Me Nots,” which has been frequently covered and sampled by other artists. Rushen is also a four-time Grammy nominee who has composed scores for movies and television. She has been the first and only female musical director for many of the entertainment industry’s top award shows, which include the Grammy Awards, the Emmy Awards, the People’s Choice Awards, and the NAACP Image Awards which she Music Directed for 12 consecutive years. Her film score credits include Robert Townsend’s cult classic “Hollywood Shuffle”, director Euzhan Palcy’s “The Killing Yard” and “The Ruby Bridges Story”, Danny Glover’s directorial debut for Showtime, “Just A Dream” and the comedy series, “The Steve Harvey Show”.
Justin Gray Songwriter & Producer
Justin Gray is a Los Angeles based songwriter, record producer, music executive and tech entrepreneur. Over the past 12 years, Justin’s projects have sold in excess of 40 million copies, and accumulated more than 8 billion streams worldwide. He has collaborated with a diverse range of artists including Avril Lavigne, Mariah Carey, John Legend, David Bisbal, Luis Fonsi, Joss Stone, Amy Winehouse, James Bay, and Reignwolf. Most recently, Justin has seen great success with #1 singles by Avril Lavigne, Superjunior, and Chinese mega star Chris Lee, and enjoyed a #1 hit in China with TF Boys' Roy Wang and his song “The Wrong Things.” Justin is the founder and Chairman of the recently launched www.MDIIO.com, a "Global social platform for songwriters and Music Professionals."
Bukola Sawyerr Izeogu Media, PR, and entertainment expert
Bukola Sawyerr Izeogu is one of Nigeria's leading PR and media relations experts. She has over 20 years of experience in web design, networking, and public relations. She is the founder and CEO of her own PR firm specializing in PR and entertainment, and currently manages Grammy-nominated artists such as Burna Boy, Asa, and 2Face. Bukola also provides consultancy services to traditional media outlets, she is a seasoned music lover and has served as a director on the board of one of the most successful record labels in Nigeria, Chocolate City Music as well as the Lagos Jazz Series.
Andrew Dakhovskyy Co-Founder & CEO
With over 25 years of experience in the music industry, Andrew is attributed as one of the founding fathers of the music industry in Ukraine, having been a true champion in promoting licensed music consumption. For years, Andrew represented Universal Music in Ukraine, becoming the first global label’s licensee in the country. Andrew’s music label Ukrainian Records released a number of well-known Ukrainian artists. In 2017, Andrew became a co-founder of the world’s first community-based music label based on the blockchain technology Younk. Andrew is passionate about promoting the idea of the borderless and inclusive world of music.
Stefan Eghbalian Co-Founder & Corporate Strategy
Stefan is a Berlin-based internationally-recognized expert in Strategic Marketing, Entrepreneurship, and International Management. A Cambridge-trained scholar and one of the pioneers of the internet, Stefan has been Founder, Senior Executive, and Strategy Advisor to some of the fastest-growing technology companies in Europe and North America, such as Nameplanet, Globaleye, Daimler Benz, and BBG. Stefan has been educated and trained at leading academic institutions in the UK, Germany and North America. At Djooky, Stefan looks after marketing strategy planning and implementation.
Gennadiy Kurochka Co-Founder, Creative Strategy
A multi-award-winning brand and communications strategist, Gennadiy has been a mastermind behind the first National Branding Strategy of Ukraine in 2010, Ukraine House in Davos, and Ukraine Crisis Media Center. Gennadiy authored creative projects which brought the first Cannes Lion and Gold Sabre Awards to Ukraine. Back in the early 2000s, Gennadiy initiated the process of Ukraine joining the European Broadcasting Union and consequently becoming a member of the Eurovision Song Contest. He was also behind the marketing campaign of Ruslana, Ukraine’s first ESC winner. Gennadiy’s interests range from global politics to creative industries and technology. He is a co-founder and investor in a number of music tech and biotech startups.
Daria Partas Head of Communications
Daria is a London-based strategic communications advisor and reputation management expert with over 15 years of experience. Her career includes working in communications roles in/with complex matrix cross-border organizations such as British Telecom, VEON, United Nations, CNN International, and Eurovision Song Contest. As a lifelong hobby, Daria also works with singers on accent reduction, and writes and translates song lyrics for non-English speaking artists. Daria’s role at Djooky encompasses reputation management, content planning and media relations.
Nick Dakhovskyy Chief Counsel
Nick is an award-winning lawyer specialising in intellectual property law. He has been instrumental in developing the legal framework for Djooky’s global operations. Previously, as the Head of Legal at a US-based blockchain music startup, he also advised on IP litigation and disputes. Nick has a wealth of experience in IP law, having worked at the State Intellectual Property Office of Ukraine and provided legal counselling to numerous artists, producers, production studios and film companies. Nick obtained MA Law from the top university in Ukraine, graduating with Honors.
Charles Whitehead Advisory Board
Professor at Cornell University and Cornell Tech, deputy chair of Ukraine's National Startup Fund. Former Managing Director at Nomura, Salomon Brothers, Citigroup.
Kevin Day Advisory Board
Music industry executive who spent over 12 years as a Marketing Executive at Universal Music/MCA Records and Geffen Records.
Ben McLane Advisory Board
Entertainment attorney specializing in music. Represented artists such as Guns N' Roses, Dixie Chicks, Nine Inch Nails, and Alicia Keys.
Alexander Kozlov Advisory Board
Financial industry executive with more than 20 years’ experience, successfully managing private investment fund New Spirit Capital Latin America Opportunity, and worked as a principal for complex investment projects for strategy consulting firm Central Europe Trust Company(UK).