Who is behind Pretzel?

Pretzel began as a solution for streamers. Founded by Knaught (Nate Beck) and McLaffyTaffy (Ryan Capps), Pretzel was created to help make music licensing accessible and affordable to live streamers.

Our Staff:

Nate Beck - CEO & Tech
Hi, I’m Nate also known as Knaught on Twitch… and a lifetime gamer. I can usually be found playing Destiny, Diablo, or MTG Arena when not writing code or taking meetings.

I’m the person who writes code and makes sure the service stays online for everyone 24/7.

I also have an unhealthy obsession with the history of music law, and understanding the complexities of licensing music.

Tom Riley - COO
Hey! I’m Tom. I’m fortunate to have had over 10 years of experience in the music industry. My journey started in London as a junior booking agent with Mainstage Artists before launching a management company called Catalyst Artist Management. In 2013, I joined OWSLA, heading up all European operations for the label and consulting for Team Skrillex until 2019.

Recently I’ve joined Pretzel as COO. I’m a passionate believer that licensing culture needs modernizing and that live streaming represents a huge future in the way music is consumed and heard. I’ve had the opportunity to work with some exceptionally talented artists in the past and my role here means I’ll continue to work with exceptionally talented artists in the future!

Rini CS - Head of Customer Support
Hi. I’m Rini and I’ve worn a lot of hats over the years. I have a bachelors in Communication, Writing, and Religion, and am in the process of finishing a masters in Cultural & Digital Anthropology. I’ve primarily been a writer and designer, but I have also worked in radio, as a magazine editorial assistant, stage manager, merchandise manager for a 30+ piece circus punk rock marching band, bartender at a saloon in a thrill park, help run a biological imaging facility at a Research 1 university, was a director of a design school, and a public archaeologist at revolutionary war dig site.

Most recently though, I have my time on Twitch as a moderator for a number of channels, including 7 partnered channels, and as the former COO for StreamerSquare.

While my journey to Pretzel has been quite the adventure, I am so excited to be a part of this team and to help content creators access incredible music that is safe for their streams. I love learning about things, but what keeps me going is being able to help others and connect them to solutions that work for them.

Ryan McKay - CEDJ & Head of A&R
Well Hello, my name is Ryan. I started my career path as a commercial pilot with a degree in Aeronautical Engineering. Music was always my first love, however, and it quickly stole me away from the sky and landed me in the studio. I found myself in Houston in 2002 where I started my professional career as a touring DJ and music producer. I won Houston Press Best DJ 4 years in a row and then Houston Press Best Producer.

In 2013 I teamed up with a very talented DJ/Producer out of LA named Chris Roberts and we formed the music group, Made Monster. Made Monster toured nationally and internationally and had charting records across prominent labels like Spinnin, Ninety9Lives, Buygore, and Atlantic Records.

I met Nate through Ninety9lives where he pitched me the idea of Pretzel. I was on board ever since and have been helping him make Pretzel a reality for the past 3 years.

I have been using my experience of 20 years in the music industry to help manage music curation and General A&R to make sure Pretzel gets the best music it possibly can to the ears of every broadcaster that gives us a try.

Aaron Boushley - CTO
Hello There! My name is Aaron. I'm a software engineer that started building applications for small business in high school, and now have over a decade of experience building software. I've spent time working at large corporations including Microsoft and Amazon, and I've spent time at tiny startups, and everything in between. I've spent a lot of time on streaming media, like my time working at Twitch working on the video playback infrastructure.

I've helped out on pretzel since the beginning, but eventually joined full time.