“FLEXIBILITY is the key. There are no rules anymore,” Brian Message, co-manager of Faithless, Kate Nash and Radiohead told delegates in his keynote address. He said record labels were still a part of the equation, along with numerous other options, to boost an artist career.
Free music was also an essential element in the whole equation, he said,citing Radiohead’s successful online music campaign. “The key word is value. Free music is a valuable part of the artist proposition,” Message said. “It doesn’t mean that you just deliver free recorded music. If however we need to get a market in some part of the world where we don’t have a base, we can do something with free music to stimulate interest.”
Message was instrumental in launching the Featured Artist Coalition. “The idea is that artists need to have a voice and take responsibility. We don’t want legal rulings or even commercial decisions being made that will affect their careers without their being able to have a voice in it,” he said.