The Orchard’s co-founder is a reliably insightful and provocative speaker at music and tech conferences, and his latest appearance (at the Eurosonic Noorderslag event) sounds like it generated plenty of sparks. Forbes has a good writeup.
“In the eighties rap music was dismissed as a fad, in the nineties no-one in the industry could imagine a world without MTV. Today no-one can conceive of a world which is post-streaming or post-fan,” said Cohen. “Every ten years something kills the music industry. If you want to know what’s next look at the tech world.”
His speech involved plenty of focus on artificial intelligence, both as a way of organising the recorded-music catalogue and as a way to create music. “Machines can write great music, and they have no ego. Instagram completely democratized photography, so will we use AI to help create music like we use spellcheck when typing now? Wait until musicians really get into working with AI and see what they can create…”