Let's start by admitting that I'm about to break several basic rules of journalism. While there's reporting in this piece, I am also a newly minted fan of SF Music Tech. So, it is with heartfelt gratitude that I take to my computer at 11:30pm to gather my thoughts after a whirlwind day at SF Music Tech Summit. Gratitude for Brian Zisk and the incredible team that worked tirelessly to pull of an impeccable conference; for the countless enthusiastic individuals who I crossed paths with both intentionally and circumstantially; and for the ideas shared, expanded upon, and set in motion throughout the day. While there is entirely too much future content for one blog post to handle, there were a handful of recurring themes worth highlighting.
audiomachine, a boutique motion picture advertising music production collective, was approached by demanding consumers to release their fan-proclaimed "epic" trailer music commercially, and as a result, audiomachine: Remixed happened. To add an additional layer of creativity, audiomachine approached some of electronic music's most famed remixers to turn their trailers into something even more unique and engaging. In streaming the sample track, I can say with confidence, "mission accomplished."
Social media has become as ubiquitous as radio play and touring when it comes to an artist making themselves known to the public. However there is a certain finesse that comes with using social media in music. Social Media success comes with being multi-faceted in your approach. Taylor Swift seems to have accomplished that with her last album, 1989. While album sales in the music industry have been on the steady decline in recent years, Taylor Swift has managed to sell 1.287 million albums in her first week. Jana Pochop explains the main factors that have contributed to her success.
The SF Music Tech Summit is upon us and we couldn't be more thrilled to be back! Tomorrow's conference is loaded with expertly curated info-sessions and panel discussions led and/or moderated by some of the industry's top leaders and influencers. We will be covering the conference and taking advantage of the opportunity to meet and network throughout the day - want to say hello? We'd love that!
By Diana C. Hereld of Pathways in Music
On Monday, November 3, The Berklee City Music Network Conference kicked off with a morning of presentations and discussions with youth development leaders Libby Chiu and Jonathan Zeichner, while music performers/educators/advocates Kevin Eubanks, Terri Lyne Carrington, Sheila E, Patrice Rushen, Lalah Hathaway, and Donald Harrison shared insights on working with young musicians. Robert Gould and Laura Padilla, scholarship recipients from Berklee College of Music, delivered the keynote presentation. The afternoon featured breakout sessions for music educators and arts administrators.
We love it when companies try things that help independent artists make more money, and CD Baby is doing just that with a promotion designed to sell more CDs during the upcoming holiday gift giving season. For a limited time, standard domestic and international shipping for CD sales through CDBaby.com will be just 1¢; and it will not affect how much artists make from CD sales or the pricing they have set.
Imagine you're listening to a new song and deciding whether you like it. That snap decision involves more than you might think. Because the likeability of music is so subjective, we all have our own personal preferences that go into our judgments. What you may not realize, though, is the depth of the physiological process that every individual's brain goes through in determining whether a song pleases them or repels them. Let's take a look inside.
David Hyman, former CEO of Beats Music, has taken the lid off of his most recent startup venture, Chosen. The first of it's kind, Chosen is recreating the concept of hit TV shows like American Idol, X Factor, and The Voice by bringing the main stage to the consumer's pocket. By making competition accessible to any and every musician with a desire to be discovered. Having just raised $5 million dollars to further explicate their vision, Chosen is anticipating a strong launch in Q1 2015.
SHAMELESS PLUGS ALLOWED
Hypebot.com is thrilled to be a sponsor of SF Music Tech again this Fall. We are quite excited about next week's conference and hope you are too! In an effort to bring the best of SF Music Tech to the Hypebot.com community, we will be using InLinkz to facilitate a Link Up Party. If you're planning to attend, writing a preview for the conference or wish to share any revelations made while attending SF Music Tech, we want to hear from you and feature your work. How does this work? It's quite simple really.
Spotify certainly hopes so. After being pressured publicly by Spotify to release her newest album, 1989, to streaming, Taylor Swift not only denied them the album, she removed her entire back catalogue of music from the platform. Some say it's a strategic business move, others say its a brash decision in a ploy to make more money - but no matter which side of that fence you stand on, this decision has sparked a conversation within and about the music industry that is worthy of significant consideration.
By Mark Mulligan, this post originally appeared on MusicIndustryBlog.com
The removal of all of Taylor Swift’s albums from Spotify and other streaming services is sending minor shockwaves through the music industry. Swift’s label Big Machine has long adhered to a streaming windowing strategy and there is pretty compelling evidence that the approach has paid dividends. Swift’s ‘1989’ is not only on track to be the only million selling US album this year it is also set to have the highest ever first week album sales for a female artist, again in the US. No mean feat considering how much album sales have tanked. While it is impossible to prove the exact degree of causality, it would be fatuous to claim that windowing had done anything less than not hurt those sales. Windowing is an issue that refuses to go away but is a natural effect of the transition phase we are in.
By David C. Lowery on TheTrichordist.com
Here’s Taylor Swift a few months back in the Wall Street Journal on music:
Music is art, and art is important and rare. Important, rare things are valuable. Valuable things should be paid for. It’s my opinion that music should not be free, and my prediction is that individual artists and their labels will someday decide what an album’s price point is. I hope they don’t underestimate themselves or undervalue their art.
As best as I can recall, I’ve subscribed to you since you launched in the United States. While most Americans pay $40 a year for music, I’ve been proud to pay $120 a year because I fundamentally believe in supporting artists and rights holders. And I thought Spotify was a good way to do that.
Warner Music Group has announced the development of the Warner Music Prize, a $100,000 cash prize to be given annually to a promising musican between the age of 18 - 35. Backed by the Blavatnik Family Foundation, notorious supporters of educational initiative, the award aims to bolster rising musicians with notable talents or achievements regarless or any label affiliation. This year's inaugural award will be presented to an artist presented by Carnegie Hall who has shown exemplary musicianship in their solo roles throughout the 2014-2015 concert season.
Vinyl is making an impressive comeback in the digital download era of music consumption. Laura Creed, of Superfi has done quite a bit of research into the resurgence of vinyl, it's popularity, and what it could mean for today's music industry. The proof is in the infographic - today's average consumer is choosing digital, but the case is far from closed for vinyl records. There is an increase in trend, and it's more than just hipsters flaunting their trendy music.
[Continue Reading for Infographic]
By FMC's Casey Rae on FutureOfMusic.org
Who gets paid, how much and under what terms when music is played on digital and AM/FMradio? Answering those questions isn’t easy, even for experts. But one thing is clear: 2014 has been a big year for the laws and policies that determine royalty rates for all forms of radio, and the intrigue will likely continue into 2015. There are a few proceedings and court cases currently underway that will impact radio and creators—from legal questions around recordings made before 1972 to the rules that govern the public performances of musical works to royalty rates for sound recordings played on Internet and satellite radio.
Soundcloud is looking to start making money. The Berlin-based online music streaming giant has grown its user base to 350 million since launching in 2007. Up till now, the company has lost up to $29.6 million. Soundcloud currently pays no publishing royalties because they are not making money from advertising like Youtube is. For this reason, they have managed to avoid any legal problems with organizations like NMPA. However, David Israelite of the NMPA has recently said that they may still sue, but are looking for a win win situation. In an effort, to launch their ad-supported streaming smoothly, Soundcloud has hired fore Warner Music executive Stephen Byran as VP of business development.
Despite several ongoing legal battles with record labels, earlier this week, Grooveshark announced the launch of Grooveshark Presents, a new fan-sourced live music initiative. By tapping into their already established user base of over 30 million music fans, Grooveshark Presents is a way for Grooveshark to bring offline music events to their online audience.
The finalists for the 2014 Billboard Touring Awards were announced yesterday. One Direction, Justin Timberlake, Katy Perry, Florida Georgia Line, Luke Bryan, Arcade Fire, Rolling Stones, Jason Aldean and Paul McCartney were among the finalists. Billboard's touring awards recognizes artists with outstanding achievement in the touring world. The awards are based considerably off of Billboard's Boxscore chart data that reflects gate receipts for concerts, comedy shows, and various real box office shows.