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Some personnel news… Music Ally’s evolving team and business

Dear Music Ally Reader,

We’d like to share some happy news with you, about how Music Ally’s team and our business is evolving.

We’re delighted to announce that Patrick Ross, formerly our VP of digital strategy, is now Music Ally’s chief operating officer (COO). He’ll be overseeing our development into a global leader in knowledge and skills for the modern music business.

Patrick joined Music Ally three and a half years ago from AWAL / Kobalt, and he’ll be working with closely with Kushal Patel and Marlen Huellbrock, our newly-promoted head of training and head of marketing respectively, to build some marvellous things that we’re looking forward to announcing soon…

We’re also pleased as punch to appoint Joe Sparrow as the new editor of Music Ally, taking a central role on the publishing side of our business, including podcasts, video and our recently-launched weekly newsletter The Knowledge.

Don’t worry: we haven’t kicked out his predecessor as editor. Stuart Dredge is now our head of insight, developing new ways for us to publish and share our knowledge. He will (sadly for his prospects of morning lie-ins!) continue to write our daily news bulletin.

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Music’s next decade: the metaverse, NFTs, social audio and more

Last month, we teamed up with the BPI to hold an event called 10×10: Trends for Music’s Next Decade. It featured 10 presentations from industry figures about trends they felt would be important for the next decade of music.

Now we have published our report from the event, with writeups of every talk plus some conclusions and further reading links. 

The report is available for free here, with the 10 topics being: music and the metaverse; the future of direct-to-fan; 5G and music; artificial intelligence; smart homes and smart cars; the future of social audio; the attention economy; the rise of creator culture; the future of music NFTs; and the evolution of streaming.

We hope you enjoy the report!

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Interview: Jenuelle Na-Oy and Nelson Navarro from Music Ally’s Creative Entrepreneur Programme

Music Ally launched our Creative Entrepreneur Programme (CEP) in early 2020 as a way to give skills and support to young people in the UK between 18 – 25 who want to understand how the modern music industry works – but may not have the support or resources to access opportunities, or lack access to traditional academic or vocational pathways.

Our goal was to support young people in the UK by giving them access to the same level of knowledge and skills that we know people who work in the industry have and to hopefully help them to grow in confidence and develop their network in the process.

We partnered with UK charity Youth Music to help us reach people outside of academia, or the world of internships, or – basically – London: people who want to make a difference in the modern industry, whether as artists & creators, or as the next generation of entrepreneurs.

After a long seven month process with 100 students involving specially-designed learning pathways of Music Ally’s information and education content, various drop-in sessions and a two month mentoring programme with leading music business figures around the world, we selected two outstanding performers: Jenuelle Na-Oy on our business strand and Nelson Navarro on the artist / creator strand.

We chatted to Jenuelle and Nelson about their experiences in the CEP scheme, what they learned, and what they did next. Here’s what they had to say…

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Feeling Good: free report on music, fitness, wellbeing and technology

Earlier this month, Music Ally teamed up with British industry body the BPI for an online event called ‘Feeling Good’ about the intersection of music, fitness/wellbeing and technology.

Now we’ve published a tie-in report, which you can download for free here. In it, we’ve explored some of the companies who’ve been innovating in these areas, from Peloton and Calm to Weav Music, FitXR, Headspace and more.

We’ve also looked at the playlist ecosystems emerging around fitness and wellbeing on streaming services; explained ‘gymfluencers’ and their musical activities; and reported on the views of 7digital and a panel of experts (WMG’s Scott Cohen, CrossBorderWorks Consulting’s Vickie Naumann and Sound Media Ventures’ Shachar Oren) convened at the event. Enjoy!

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Intro: BPI and Music Ally’s Music & Tech Springboard Programme

There’s been a radical shift in the way we make, deliver and experience music over the last decade, driven by innovation and partnerships between the music and technology industries.

Innovation isn’t just about the biggest tech companies though: the music industry has its arms open wide to talented music-tech startups of all kinds.

That’s why we at Music Ally have teamed up with British music industry body the BPI for a new series of videos called The Music & Tech Springboard Programme, which launches today.

This series of videos explains how startups are working with labels and the wider industry already, and offers practical advice from experts on how these relationships can be as positive and effective as possible.

In this first video, BPI chief executive Geoff Taylor and Music Ally CEO Paul Brindley introduce the series, and offer some initial tips for startups on how best to approach and work with the music industry:

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Startups explain the lessons they learned working with the music industry

In the Music & Tech Springboard series of videos we’ve produced with the BPI, we’ve heard from collecting societies, lawyers, advisors, accelerators and incubators, and labels about their advice for music/tech startups. But what about hearing from some startups themselves?

That’s what this video does. A group of British startups who’ve all signed licensing deals and/or worked on pilots with music industry rightsholders give us the key lessons they’ve learned along the way, for the benefit of younger companies about to embark on similar journeys.

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Music and technology industry advisors offer their tips for tech startups

Technology and music may be two separate industries, but there are a number of people whose jobs revolve around bridging the gap between the two: helping startups to understand the strategies and priorities of rights holders, and helping rightsholders to grasp the needs of startups.

It’s not uncommon to find these advisors working with one or the other side when deals are being done and partnerships sketched out. Two of the prominent examples in the UK are Cliff Fluet, managing director of Eleven Advisory, and Becky Brook, founder of Becky Brook Consulting.

In this video, they offer their perspectives on how the relationship between startups and music companies can be as healthy as possible, including avoiding some of the well-known pitfalls.

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Music licensing: the basics that tech startups need to know

If a music-tech startup’s product or service involves making the actual music available, that company will need licences for the music. Understanding how licensing works is one of the first and most important things that these startups need to understand.

At its simplest level, that also means understanding whether you need to be talking to record labels, music publishers, collecting societies or all three. Thankfully, the collecting societies are a good first port of call for information on this.

This video picks the brains of executives from the two main collecting societies in the UK: Jez Bell, chief licensing officer at PPL, the society which looks after recorded music; and Nick Edwards, head of online at PRS for Music, which represents songwriters, composers and music publishers.