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This year’s Midemnet marks our tenth anniversary, and what an amazing time we’ve been privileged to observe. The early pioneers: Napster, Liquid Audio, MP3.com, Rioport, Rhapsody, Soundbuzz, Musiwave, OD2, Melon, Puretracks, the next generation: Kazaa, Pandora, iTunes, and Limewire, and the newcomers: Amazon MP3, Omnifone, Nokia’s Comes With Music and EchoNest. These innovative ventures have changed the face of music forever. However, as we look back at the past decade, it’s clear that it hasn’t been very kind to the traditional music industry. As physical formats continue their sales spiral downward, staffing and roster cuts are deep. It is painful to observe, as the labels now confront the need to rapidly evolve or become irrelevant.

It has, however, offered the independent music artist the greatest opportunity for success to date. The MP3 format, e-mail, websites, internet radio, music blogs, UGC, all these tools and more have made direct connection between artist and fan a reality. Distribution, once the Holy Grail, can be achieved instantaneously through services such as Tunecore. Marketing is key, so why not utilize the services of of ReverbNation or SonicBids?

Join us at Midemnet 2009 as we explore both the possibilities and realities of monetizing the artist-fan relationship. It’s just the beginning of the revolution, arm yourself with invaluable knowledge.


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About Author

3 Comments

  1. Thanks for your insight, Ted, and for remembering the early pioneers. I was working with Liquid Audio from inception as consultant and bridge to the independent artist. As a result, was the engineer who recorded, uploaded live performance to the internet. From there, the music was available world wide within minutes, copyrighted, and pay button applied. We brought our dog and pony show to all the conventions, including midem.
    The traditional physical distribution system for music needed to collapse. However, I believe there is coming a world where true music lovers will seek out physical product like vinyl, that they can hold, hear and see without going to the internet and a computer. Already, we’re seeing companies sell vinyl with no return policies and major artists along with young underground bands releasing in that format with increasing success.
    The volume of physical product will be more limited in sales, internet audio will replace radio (only now the consumer will pay for their radio and have to program it), bands will continue to tour (whether driving in a bus or driving traffic from forums to websites) and financially adequate careers will be had by those passionate about music.
    Current times are looking like the 50’s and early 60’s when corporate giants controlled the mass listening experience and no one really cared. That is, until Bill Graham brought the underground to the foreground and the music business exploded with vibrancy.
    It’s an exciting time.

  2. Ted, will Midem offer any “unconference” or “barcamp” style (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BarCamp) sessions, where the participants create and lead the agendas by self-organizing into respective interest groups?
    Since you are familiar with my company, http://loudfeed.com you could guess I’d be interested in hearing from artists and labels about their needs for tools like ours to manage, promote and sell under your own brand. For example, what do content owners like about existing tools on the market and what do they feel is still missing.

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