Monday, August 18, 2008

Bandwidth (Day One)

I spent Thursday and Friday at the Bandwidth Music and Technology Conference in San Francisco, my second year attending the event. After registering and picking up my badge, I headed over to the "My Rock and Roll Moment Panel." This was a great way to get started - we sat in a circle and shared stories of encounters with rock stars. I told my Kenny Rogers story.

The Bellweathers panel was made up - not of industry/social media experts - but "music loving youth." The panel proved insightful in that it was a reminder of who the fans are. It was interesting that none of the panelists mentioned a word about blogs or Pitchfork, but did talk about discovering bands on MySpace and at shows. As expected, each acknowledged a pretty serious amount of music piracy.

I was rather excited about the presentation from 42 Entertainment, as I was fascinated by the work they did with Nine Inch Nails. I don't expect to be able to create something as grand as the universe they built for Year Zero, but I did pick up a number of insightful tidbits:
-"Today's wired audience is attracted to subversive or alternative engagement."
-"People are more and more not differentiating between their various content types."
-"Communities band together around something they are collectively interested in.... The web connects us."
-"Whispering to your audience is sometimes more important than shouting at them. If you let the audience find it, they feel a sense of ownership and spread the word."
-"Belive in the community?"
The "Crystal Ball Panel" looked to the future and it was said that one day you would be able to use songs as your car horn.

As insightful as the panels can be, I find the real action happens at the Happy Hour afterwards. Bands play (that night it was Birdmonster), panelists are present, and a great deal of socializing and networking takes place. I had a great time chatting with panelists and other attendees, exchanging business cards and making some new friends.

Once I realized that I was directing people to the N&UR website, I decided I better get that thing up to date and up to par. I found myself up at the computer far past my bed time, tweaking and changing the site.

All in all, another great day in the life of an indie label president.

1 comment:

Allison said...

Sounds like a very enlightening experience.

I still use music blogs to discover new artists. Myspace always loads funny on my computer.