Now in its 5th year, the International Music Summit (IMS Ibiza) aims to offer delegates in the music industry the chance to listen to and be a part of a vital conversation with the world’s leading figures across music, business and digital strategy. It has a particular focus on electronic dance music.
The first day kicked off on Wednesday May 23rd at 13.00 promptly at The Gran Hotel in Ibiza. Surprisingly the delegates managed to drag themselves away from around the gorgeous pool area to pour into the summit venue for the event introduction from the IMS team: Ben Turner, Danny Whittle, Mark Netto, Pete Tong and Simeon Friend. The brief and to the point intros (other event organisers take note) were followed by two short but illuminating presentations about the state of the markets for electronic dance music, now commonly referred to as EDM.
The focus of the next four sessions was predominantly new forms of marketing and promoting music and artists using social media, with representatives from Twitter, Spotify and FourSquare talking about how their platforms support and facilitate this.
Tatiana Simonian from Twitter gave some interesting examples of how some artists are using Twitter themselves, and the benefits that live tweeting can bring. Omid Ashtari from Four Square talked about a new addition to the platform, that they are taking in Songkick’s data, and that artists can now add rewards to events, such as money off merchandising at a concert. Will Hope from Spotify outlined how 70% of their revenue actually went to the artists. Vue cinemas showed how they were bringing music events and films into their cinemas.
A welcome addition to the afternoon schedule was James Barton from Cream being interviewed by Pete Tong, about why he has just sold the Cream business to Live Nation after building it up for 20 years. He also talked about his new job within Live Nation as President of Electronic Music, with a focus on North America and how he will be looking at new markets in places like China and India. The conversation that ensued was humorous and insightful into many aspects of Cream and the brand, with lots of anecdotes about the ups and downs experienced over the last 20 years.
Next up was ‘Meet Team Chase and Status’ in which a panel of 7 people behind Chase and Status talked how they came to be signed, promoted and became highly successful.
A later panel session ‘Brand and Band – A case study with Professor Green’ featured The Professor himself and people from his management team, record label and brand sponsors talking about the brand partnerships he has with O2 and Puma. The Professor talked eloquently about how such deals enable him to do new and innovative work, for example play a small gig in Manchester for 250 Facebook fans and make a 360 degree interactive video, which he would not easily have been able to realise otherwise. Interestingly, the deals he has allow him to have complete creative freedom in the projects he embarks on.
The final session for the day was billed as an IMS exclusive, ‘Danny Tenaglia in Conversation’ with Ben Turner. The interview was conducted via Skype, direct from Danny’s loft in New York. After a few initial technical hitches Danny appeared live on the screen in front of us. The focus of the conversation was Danny’s recent announcement on FaceBook that he was retiring from being an International DJ.
He gave a very candid insight into how he is reassessing his life as a DJ in his 51st year. In particular, the dichotomy about wanting to play music and make people happy, but that he doesn’t like the celebratory status that has come with it, which stops him from being able to go out and enjoy himself in the way he would like to, and the amount of travelling involved (he has a deep-rooted hatred of flying). The upshot is that he’s not really retiring, but reassessing his work/life balance, and cutting back on the International travel. In the process he’s finding that as one door closes, others are opening.
He’s going to concentrate on getting better at his craft and learning how to use new technology more, and maybe start a DJ school. At the end we were given a guided tour of his loft, which is hugely impressive in its immenseness, and for the view of New York from the roof. It’s easy to see why he wants to spend more time at home!
The full schedule and details of the event are on the website: http://www.internationalmusicsummit.com/
Follow the event on Twitter #imsibz or @imsibiza
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