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MSL is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the development, promotion, and administration of Music-Performance Sports aka "Music-Sports". 

MSL is the administrator of the INDEPENDENT ARTIST COMPETITION SERIES (IACS), the world's first-ever unsigned recording artist music-performance sports league. IACS is governed by its competition committee which the rules and regulations. Juan A  Thompson currently serves as Chairman and Commissioner.

Our Mission

To establish Music-Sports as a viable competitive music-performance program to enhance fan engagement, promotion, and career development for unsigned recording artists. 

Juan A. Thompson


History of Music-Sports

Juan A. Thompson is a music industry professional of 26 years and has worked with artists in the areas of music production, A&R, management, marketing/ promotions, consulting, and song development. Juan has advised and consulted dozens of independent artists. The majority of them reveal the mental, emotional, and physical strains that come with their frustrations of no support from friends and family, not seeing the results of the money they put into promotions, as well as, in some cases, losing money due to scams. This created anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, and even attempts of suicide. All of these artists at the time, as many do today, lack what the industry would consider an acceptable social media following. Upon the emergence of YouTube, Juan foresaw this becoming a problem where labels would capitalize on this by forecasting an artist's worth solely on social media following, views, and subscribers versus their actual music. This could result in a hindrance on the quality of artists gaining opportunities, and the quality of music being released. This put a substantial amount of his clients, as many do today, at a severe disadvantage, which led to, in some cases, Juan coming out of pocket to help. However, with it taking thousands of dollars to hire an experienced marketing team, in addition to needing a pretty sizable marketing budget to get the necessary marketing resources, he along with the artists ran into constant roadblocks. 

In 2014, while watching American Idol, he briefly thought to himself how cool it would be to see a rapper going against a singer. Coincidentally, that evening when he went to sleep, he found himself in a large arena at a music competition. On stage happened to be a rapper competing against a singer. Juan was mesmerized moreover by the fact that the event felt more like a main event boxing match than a music competition. After giving the details about his dream to his mother the next morning, she insisted that what he saw sounded like a vision from God and not a dream. Juan went to Google and started researching various music competitions to find out if there were anything like what he saw. Once he noticed that there wasn't anything like it, he thought that his mother may have been right. Feeling compelled, he then, begin studying various sports business infrastructures such as USA Boxing, NFL, NBA, and pro tennis to come up with a competitive platform. He understood that he would need to develop the actual sport before he could develop the league. After 8 months of research and development, he wrote the first version of what was named, "Music-Performance Sports, vol. 1.0". 

Marketing it as "Music-Sports", Juan needed to test the concept. So, out of his own pocket, on April 25th, 2015, he hosted his very first game called, "IACS (7) CITIES CHAMPIONSHIP" in Virginia Beach, in which, there were 8-players across different genres that would compete head-to-head. He saw that this was not only entertaining but could also, potentially, help the many up-and-coming artists that struggle like the ones he worked with in the past. Soon after that, he adopted the "Independent Artist Competition Series" (IACS) and made it the league to facilitate the Music-Sports platform, which, he wanted to organize like the NFL/NBA. Juan operated several games from 2015 - 2018 all out of pocket due to being turned down by several local businesses for sponsorship. In 2018, Juan was forced to take a 3-year break due to health issues. However, still believing Music-Sports could revolutionize independent music promotions and marketing, in 2021, he revamped MSL as a nonprofit organization, because he felt Music-Sports should never be stock or equity owned, but operated only in the best interest of the growth of the sport. Juan's ultimate inspiration is to see Music-Sports reach the Olympic stage within 20 years.