Music Biz 2017 has ended
Please note that Monday, May 15 consists of pre-convention meetings, digital service workshops, the Entertainment & Technology Law Conference, and the Industry Jam 2. The full program will take place Tuesday, May 16  through Thursday, May 18.  
avatar for John Kunz

John Kunz

Waterloo Records & Video
Austin, TX

Kunz got his start in 1973 as a part-time sales clerk at Disc Records, eventually working his way up to store manager in 1975, where his location was the first in the 45-store Disc chain to reach $1 million in sales for the year. In 1976, he was named manager of the chain’s first Zebra Records store and became a regional manager in 1980, assuming responsibility for 13 Texas-based stores.

He left the chain in 1982 with dreams to start his own business. Kunz teamed with Louis Karp for the first five years at Waterloo Records, the first record store in Texas to import and stock CDs.  Kunz was instrumental in securing a partnership between Waterloo and the major labels, allowing them to expand their offerings and to bring in major acts such as Willie Nelson, Sheryl Crow, Los Lobos, Ben Harper, the Dixie Chicks, Nirvana, Lyle Lovett, and Spoon to play in-store performances. In 1988, he entered the label business by co-founding  Watermelon Records. The label released over 65 albums from acts such as Alejandro Escovedo, Don Walser, Santiago Jimenez Jr., the Austin Lounge Lizards, and more before being sold to the Texas Music Group.

In 1995, Kunz was a co-founder of the Coalition of Independent Record Stores (CIMS) and served several terms as a Board Member. Kunz has also been a Board of Directors member at NAIRD and AFIM and has been a founding Board Member of the Health Alliance for Austin Musicians (HAAM) and Austin Music People.