👋 THE KNOWLEDGE: Get a weekly mix of the best news, analysis, and insider tips from across Music Ally's services. (Plus all the weird links and unusual music we find online each week.) It's FREE, fun*, and every Friday.

*actual levels of fun may vary

Posted inReports

Music Ally Quarterly Report :: Looking ahead to 2023

This report aims to provide cut-through on the big issues that we think will dominate 2023. In it, we’ve isolated the innovative ideas from some of the most influential thinkers across the music industry – and then drawn out the key learnings for you to take forward as the year unfolds. In this report, four key perspectives on the coming year: […]

To access this post, you must subscribe. If you are already a subscriber, log in here.

Posted inNews

Music’s global evolution: K-Pop, China, and Eastern Europe

The second morning at this year’s NY:LON Connect conference focused on ‘emerging international and influential markets’. Three territories in particular: South Korea, China, and Russia / Eastern Europe.

The track began with a keynote from Sun Lee, YouTube’s head of music content partnerships and subscriptions for Korea and Greater China. Lee was interviewed by Billboard K-Pop and Pop correspondent Tamar Herman.

“In 2018 it was the sixth largest market in the world, just five years ago it was tenth. You can imagine how quickly the Korean music market has grown,” said Lee, who added that thanks to K-Pop’s global popularity, exports are 37 times bigger than imports for South Korea’s music industry, with Japan and China the top markets in the former case.

Posted inNews

One-tap video app Trash wins NY:LON Connect startup showcase

One of the traditional highlights of the NY:LON Connect conference is the startup pitches session, and 2020’s event was no exception.

New York startup Trash emerged as the winner in an audience vote for the best pitch, but fellow pitchers Super Hi-Fi, MyPart, Boomy and FeedForward won plenty of plaudits from attendees too.

Music Ally first wrote about Trash in June 2019, when its app first launched. The company’s founder is Hannah Donovan, formerly GM of Vine, and before that, co-founder of music-discovery site This Is My Jam.

Trash is a ‘one-tap video app’ that uses AI technology to help people create videos with soundtracks from the material they’ve shot with their smartphones.

Posted inNews

Tech, innovation and music: ‘Pick one little thing and go deep!’

“VR is shit! It’s shit but it doesn’t have to be. Certainly the hardware’s not all the way there yet, it’s quite bulky and if you put it on for an hour or so you’re going to get a pretty raging headache and neck ache. But the real problem is the content is shit. The music industry trying to make you go see a concert in VR is about as boring as I can imagine.”

Scott Cohen can always be relied on for plenty of quotable moments when he appears on conference stages. Warner Music Group’s chief innovation officer, recorded music, keynoted the ‘Technology, Innovation and Startups’ track at NY:LON Connect, the conference that Music Ally co-runs with the Music Business Association (Music Biz), with this year’s taking place in New York last week.

Cohen’s thoughts on VR developed on a theme he talked to Music Ally about in late 2018, complete with his anecdote about feeling fully, thrillingly immersed in a VR boxing game, but being left cold by many of the current musical VR experiences.

Posted inNews

Troy Carter talks music disruption: ‘I’d still be in a panic if I were a major label…’

Troy Carter was the closing keynote at Music Ally and Music Biz’s NY:LON Connect conference in New York on Friday. The former Atom Factory boss (where he managed Lady Gaga during her rise to fame) and Spotify exec is now running Q&A, a company blending artist development, distribution and technology.

I interviewed Troy on-stage at the event, and it’s fair to say the session sparked a lot of discussion among attendees. Topics included Q&A’s structure (it’s a holding company for three individual companies: a management firm; label service and distribution; and a previously-unannounced software company); the discipline of developing artists in the streaming era; and partnerships with major labels.

It was the topic of the majors that sparked most debate later though. Carter suggested that major labels have missed a trick by not following the Disney+ template of pulling their content off existing streaming services in order to build their own platforms; suggested that the music industry may follow basketball league the NBA in becoming an artist-driven world of short contracts and label-hopping; and predicted that private-equity firms might be willing to buy out the rights of stars like Drake for hundreds of millions of dollars.

Oh, and he pointed to surveillance-technology company Palantir as inspiration for the predictive-analytics strategies around music marketing, too. The full transcript of the keynote is below, to ensure you get the full context around these and other thoughts.

Posted inNews

Publishing and rights: ‘Everybody needs to play ball in order for this tech to work’

“You can choose to grow one copyright at a time. That’s going to take a really, really long time. We went to look for solutions that would help us scale more quickly. And what drove that was really find likeminded people, find people with whom you have shared values… with whom you have a vision that really comes together as far as the growth and what you want to see. And do partnerships that way.”

Golnar Khosrowshahi is the founder and CEO of Reservoir, one of the most interesting companies sitting at the intersection of previously-siloed music industry sectors like publishing, management and master recordings.

She was also the keynote for the publishing and rights track at NY:LON Connect, the music industry conference that Music Ally co-runs with the Music Business Association (Music Biz), in New York. Khosrowshahi was interviewed on-stage by Helena Kosinski, VP of global, Nielsen Music / MRC Data.

The conversation began by looking back at Reservoir’s acquisition of the music publishing assets of TVT Music Enterprises a decade ago, in 2010. “Catalogues filled not with album cuts so much, but with great songs. It confirmed for us that we had to go after assets like that,” she said.

Posted inNews

Global music streaming: ‘We are just on the tip of the iceberg of what this will become’

“I think it’s good that we have a lot of players in the market, because it means we all get better… The streaming landscape, and particularly for us the audio landscape, will continue to grow. We are just on the tip of the iceberg of what this will become.”

Cecilia Qvist is global head of markets at Spotify, tasked with overseeing the streaming service’s continued expansion into new territories, as its content continues to spread beyond music.

She was also the opening keynote at NY:LON Connect, the music industry conference that Music Ally co-runs with the Music Business Association (Music Biz), as part of its track on ‘global streaming’. Qvist was interviewed on-stage by Music Biz president Portia Sabin.

Qvist talked about how Spotify approaches new territories. “We don’t normally put the team on the ground until we decide that we move in. But before we move into a market there’s a lot of research,” she said.