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Midem 2013: now go make a difference

No two Midems are ever the same, notably because if you live in the music business, no two years are ever the same either.

Since last year, Midem has concentrated a lot of its punch into the Palais itself. This reflects the fact that the number of stands has dropped since the good old days (that only a few people actually remember by now), so there is more space available. On the other hand, by introducing meeting spaces into the exhibition floor itself, it has never been easier to catch some of the conferences and beauty parades. You literally walk into them as you go from one place to another.

What this means is that you cannot help but be bombarded by new ideas and companies that have become so essential to the music ecosystem, as we now like to call it. This is a good thing – a very good thing indeed. The conferences often featured new twists on existing technology or web-based solutions that have been put through their paces by actual labels and/or groups and management companies. We are moving into a far more practical music industry, and it’s encouraging to see how many of the solutions involved giving fans or music consumers new ways to use music and connect with artists.

Midem conferences and events

Hang on, did you say beauty parades? Well yes, I’m not sure how else to describe the Midemlab and Hack Day events. In both cases, tech-minded startups and developers present their goods to professionals. The Midemlab crowd are in this for the long run, some coming to Midem after a year or two of commercial operations and development. They are looking to find users, partners and – critically – backers. The hackers come for the fun and the challenge of putting together a music-related app in 48 hours flat. Both have a lot to offer.

With so much on offer, it’s hard to review all the solutions and ideas I came across. The one I am itching to see up close is Pledge Music, a rather simple but powerful variation on crowd-funding. Jamplify (a Midemlab winner) provides interesting opportunities for monetisation. Kollector tracks thousands of radios worldwide, enabling people to recover royalties from radio airplays. It’s also useful for tracking PR campaigns or discovering radios that might be interested in your releases.

I’m not going to go into details on these, for the simple reason that you can watch their presentations on Midem or check their websites. Take an hour or so to root around and you could be hit with enough ideas to re-boot your approach over the coming year.Remember, there’s no point knowing stuff if you don’t apply it.

Remember, there’s no point knowing stuff if you don’t apply it!

Worldwide music business

One last thing, it’s easier to talk about conferences at Midem than meetings, as these are private. Nonetheless, Midem remains one of the best places to meet all the sides of the business from right around the world. This year, there were perhaps less people from the live sector. But the cross-pollination of dealing with people from pop, classical and jazz combined with the input of tech/web people and brands makes for a fascinating experience for anyone in the business of music.

Now go make a difference.

If you have any tips of your own or have a question about Midem, just drop them below.

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