Licensing a song may have once come with accusations of selling out, but today, getting a song on a movie, TV show or commercial can be one of the most lucrative moves for a musician. It can make paying for a tour or album that much more feasible, and can even break a band to a new audience. So how does licensing work, and how can an artist up their chances of making a deal? On this episode we talk with Kat Olsen, music supervisor at boutique licensing agency Marmoset, and Ritchie Young of Loch Lomond, who talks about having music licensed for everything from ads to Laika’s The Boxtrolls.
Treefort Music Fest is a 5-day music and arts festival in Boise, Idaho. This year’s festival was one of the most successful yet, and bolstered Treefort as a great alternative to SXSW. We headed to Boise to talk with performers and host a panel on the current state of the music industry. Hear the panel with Sharlese Metcalf (KEXP), Jess Caragliano (Terrorbird Media), Zeke Howard (The Brigade) and Karl Hofstetter (Joyful Noise) on this episode.
When you think of video game music, you might hear Koji Kondo’s Super Mario Bros. original score, or maybe FlyLo FM from Grand Theft Auto’s licensed soundtrack. Either way, video games have long held promise for composers and musicians. Like movies, video games are naturally a broad medium with room for different musical experiences. Games also provide a lucrative revenue stream for some artists. One composer, Chris Remo, who has worked on recent hits like Gone Home and Firewatch, joins us to talk about how he got into the video game industry. We also hear from Steve Gaynor, co-founder of indie game studio, The Fullbright Company. Kotaku editor-at-large Kirk Hamilton gives us a rundown of current and past trends in game music. To end the show, we get an idea of how video game music has influenced an entire music genre, and hear from Spencer Seim of Nintendocore band The Advantage.
Each year, independent labels converge in New York to talk trade at A2IM’s annual Indie Week conference. On this episode bring you some insight into the event with a panel moderated by Portia. She’s joined by some of the indie world’s best, including Mute Records’ Nicole Blonder, Sara Dempsey of ABKCO Music & Records, Dave Martin (Omnian Music Group), and General Manager of Concord Music Group, Jim Selby. While catalog is at the forefront of the discussion, the group touched on marketing to new audiences, adapting to streaming services, and making an impact on social media.
As the music industry continues to shrink, investors have begun to circle around record labels and holders of large back catalogs, likely in the hopes of acquiring large amounts of publishing and master rights for an artificially low price. What do these investors know? In this episode, we explore this topic at length, and try to figure out why investors are spending a lot of money on a “failing” industry, when artists’ core audiences aren’t.
Episode #2 of the Future of What focuses on sync licensing, which is the process by which music is sync’d to picture, as is the case in advertising, movie trailers, etc. Justin Ringle of the band Horse Feathers sits in the studio with Portia this time around, and they talk about his recent tour(s) and the series of sync/placements that he had with the California Dairy Board. Rounding out the hour, Portia speaks with Matt FX about what its like to secure music for an of-the-moment show like “Broad City”, and Carianne Marshall (of SONGS Music Publishing) explains the importance of sync licenses to an artists’ career. Sohrab Nafici (Director, Music/legal at Warner Bros.) caps the episode off with his insight into the historical and current trends within the sync business.