Joel A. Katz

Attorney in Atlanta, GA
Joel Katz, Billboard 's number-one-ranked entertainment attorney, has been called the dealmaker who thinks outside the box. The world's most famous entertainers place their trust in him to craft the breakthrough deals that boost their careers, cultivate their talents and safeguard their assets. His star-studded client roster includes music industry legends from an array of genres, as well as music producers, record companies, concert promoters and corporate heavy hitters. A powerful force in the entertainment industry, Katz is an energetic and influential contributor who has played a profound role in shaping his profession and also in spearheading philanthropic endeavors in education and in cancer research.

Areas of Concentration

•Entertainment law
•Executive compensation agreements
•Entertainment related corporate acquisitions and mergers
•Consultation of multi-national and multi-media entertainment companies

Awards & Recognition

•Listed, The Best Lawyers in America, Entertainment Law - Motion Pictures and Television; Entertainment Law - Music, 1989-2015
•Lawyer of the Year, Entertainment Law - Music, Atlanta, 2014
•Recipient, Honorary Doctorate, University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State University, July 29, 2014
•Named, Billboard magazine, The Power 100, Top-ranked attorney for Entertainment Law - Music, worldwide, 2012-2014
•Listed, Variety, Dealmakers Impact Report, 2010-2011 and 2014
•Listed, Chambers USA Guide, National - Intellectual Property, 2008-2014
•Named, The Hollywood Reporter, Power Lawyers: Top 100 Most Influential Entertainment Lawyers in America, 2007-2014
•Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, Georgia Super Lawyers, 2004-2014
•Top 100 Lawyers in Georgia, 2008, 2012-2014
•Selected, AlwaysOn, Power Players in Digital Entertainment, 2013
•Recipient, Icon of the Industry Award, The Technology Association of Georgia Entertainment Society, September 19, 2013
•Listed, Variety, Legal Impact Report: 50 Game-Changing Attorneys, 2012-2013
•Listed, Georgia Trend magazine,Legal Elite, 2009 and 2011-2013
•Selected, a Law360 MVP, 2012
•Listed, Major Label News, Most Powerful List, Music Edition - Top Entertainment Lawyer, October 2012
•Named, a U.S. News - Best Lawyers Law Firm of the Year, Entertainment Law - Music, 2011-2012
•Listed, New York Times' Supplement: Georgia's Best Lawyers, Top Entertainment Attorney of the Year, 2011
•Recipient, ASCAP Rhythm & Soul Department's 2011 Atlanta Legends Award, September 28, 2011
•Recipient, Commitment to Education Award, ORT Atlanta, December 4, 2010
•Recipient, Distinguished Alumnus Award, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, September 10, 2010
•Recipient, Service Award, Entertainment Law Initiative (ELI), The GRAMMY Foundation, January 29, 2010
•Recipient, Middelton-Candler Millennium Gate Prize, The National Monuments Foundation, December 5, 2009
•Selected, Benchmark Litigation Guide, one of the 40 Litigation Stars in Georgia, 2009
•Recipient, Bridge to Achievement Award, Hunter College, October 23, 2008
•Recipient, Honorary Doctorate of Laws Degree, Hunter College, June 4, 2008
•Dedication, Governor Sonny Perdue renamed a portion of Northside Parkway in Atlanta as JOEL KATZ PARKWAY in recognition of his many contributions to the State of Georgia, May 2008
•Listed, The Legal 500 United States, Media and Entertainment - Film, Music and TV, 2007-2008
•Recipient, Chairman of the Year and Business of the Year, The Mexican American Business Chamber, 2007
•Recipient, Outstanding Georgia Citizen, Secretary of State, The Mexican American Business Chamber, 2007
•Recipient, Spirit of Excellence Award, T.J. Martell Foundation for Leukemia, Cancer and AIDS Research, 2007
•Recipient, Ed Ruben Award for distinguished service and scholarship, ABA Entertainment and Sports Law, 2006
•Listed, Lawdragon 500, Leading Lawyers in America, 2005
•Inducted, Hunter College Hall of Fame, 2003
•Recipient, Spirit of Music Award, UJA Federation of New York and The Music for Youth Foundation, 2003
•Recipient, Heroes Award, Atlanta Chapter of the Recording Academy, 2002
•Named, Georgia Trend magazine, 100 Most Influential Georgians,January 2002
•Dedication, Joel A. Katz Law Library, University of Tennessee College of Law, 1999
•Recipient, University of Tennessee Founder's Day Medal, 1999
•Inducted, Georgia Music Hall of Fame, 1995
•Listed, Who's Who in America
•Listed, Who's Who Among Outstanding Americans
•Listed, Who's Who in Entertainment
•Listed, Who's Who in Executives and Professionals
•Listed, Who's Who in Georgia
•Listed, Who's Who in the World
•Team Leader, Investment Dealers Digest, Deal of the Year
•Rated, AV Preeminent 5.0 out of 5

AV, BV, AV Preeminent and BV Distinguished are registered certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used under in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies.

Articles, Publications, & Lectures

Joel is an active participant at industry events, having served as a speaker or panelist at The Recording Academy's Grammy in the Schools Program, the Atlanta Downtown Partnership's Music Industry Symposium, as well as various lectures and panels for the Entertainment and Sports Industry Forum of the ABA and the Entertainment and Sports Law Section of the State Bar of Georgia. Joel has also authored and co-authored many articles and commentary on various topics concerning entertainment law.

•James Brown's Longtime Lawyer Remembers the Godfather, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, July 29, 2014
•KATZ - The Mouth of the South Opens Up, Hits magazine, March 28, 2014
•MUSIC MAN Buckhead's Katz is One of Nation's Top Entertainment Lawyers, Northside Neighbor magazine, October 2012
•A Tale of Two CEOs, Men's Book Atlanta magazine, Fall 2012
•Joel Katz: Strategist to the Stars, Southern Seasons magazine, Fall 2012
•Serving the Stars with Class and Conviction, Attorney At Law magazine, Metro Atlanta Edition, August 2012
•An Entertaining Collection, Wine Spectator magazine, January 2011
•Can't Touch This, Atlanta Magazine, June 2007
•Katz Meow, When Joel Katz Sings, the Music Industry Listens, Sky Magazine, June 2002
Speaking Engagements
•Panelist, Making Magic Happen - Talent in the World of the Internet and Social Media, University of Tennessee Law School Entertainment Law Conference: Metamorphosis - How Technology is Reshaping Entertainment, Knoxville, TN, March 31, 2012

Previous Employment

•Founder, Katz, Smith & Cohen, 1981-1998
•Senior Partner, Galkin, Katz & Tye, 1971-1981
•Lawyer, Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), 1969-1971
•Law Clerk, Medium-sized Atlanta law firm, 1969-1971
•Law Professor, Georgia State University, 1969-1971

Associated News & Events

Press Releases

12.09.14 Four Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Profiled in Variety Magazine's 2014 Dealmakers Impact Report

09.02.14 18 Greenberg Traurig Atlanta Attorneys Listed in Best Lawyers in America

08.04.14 Greenberg Traurig's Joel A. Katz Awarded an Honorary Doctorate from Kennesaw State University

06.13.14 Fourteen Greenberg Traurig Atlanta Attorneys Included in 2014 USA Chambers Guide

05.23.14 Greenberg Traurig Attorneys, Practices Included in 2014 Chambers USA Guide

05.01.14 Four Greenberg Traurig Entertainment and Media Attorneys Recognized by The Hollywood Reporter

03.27.14 Greenberg Traurig Has the Most Attorneys Listed in the Top 100 List of the 2014 Edition of Georgia Super Lawyers Magazine

02.26.14 Greenberg Traurig's Joel A. Katz Named Top Entertainment Lawyer in the 2014 Billboard 'Power 100' for Third Consecutive Year

12.23.13 34 Greenberg Traurig Attorneys Included in Georgia Trend's “Legal Elite” List Across 8 Categories

08.20.13 4 Greenberg Traurig Atlanta Attorneys Listed as “Lawyers of the Year” in 2014 Edition of Best Lawyers in America

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Peer Rating 5.0 of 5

Areas of Law

  • Global Entertainment and Media


    Peer Rating


    Overall Peer Rating

    5.0 out of 5.0
    • Meets very high criteria of general ethical standards
    No feedback is available.
    The individuals that have reviewed this lawyer have not provided any additional feedback.

    Experience & Credentials


    Atlanta Founding Shareholder; Atlanta Co-Managing Shareholder Emeritus; Chair, Global Entertainment and Media Practice

    Admission Details

    Admitted in 1969, Tennessee
    1971, Georgia

    Credit Cards Accepted
    American Express
    Birth Information

    Born in 1944
    May 27, 1944

    Associations & Memberships

    Professional & Community Involvement•Member, American Bar Association, Present
    •Chairman, Forum on the Entertainment and Sports Industries, 2000-2001
    ... More

    Bar Fellowship

    Royal Society for Encouragement of Arts, Manufacturers and Commerce (RSA), 2005-Present•Music Industry Representative, State of Georgia, Film, Video and Music Advisory Commission (Appointed by Governor Sonny Perdue), 2004-Present•General Counsel, The Recording Academy (NARAS), 2003-Present•Former Executive Entertainment C... More

    Representative Cases

    Significant Representations: Negotiated and participated on George Strait' s The Cowboy Rides Away Tour by structuring the CMT televised broadcast of the tour's final concert and on the contract package of Universal Music Group' s CD and DVD release of The Cowboy Rides Away; Live From AT&T Stadium, Deluxe Edition. This concert hosted at AT&T Stadiu... More

    Contact Information






    Send email to Joel A. Katz

    Office Information
    Joel A. Katz
    Atlanta Founding Shareholder; Atlanta Co-Managing Shareholder Emeritus; Chair, Global Entertainment and Media Practice
    Terminus 200 3333 Piedmont Road NE, Suite 2500,
    Atlanta, GA 30305


    Greenberg Traurig, LLP (Atlanta, Georgia)

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