From Midem Digital 2021 to Music Plus

The second virtual edition of Midem Digital concluded last week taking place from November 16 to 19. Midem –Marché International du Disque et de l’Edition Musicale – is one of the world’s most influential trade shows dedicated to the music ecosystem. The conference has been an annual affair since 1967.

This year’s edition was entirely hosted online and is still available for anyone to experience on their website. Over four days, Midem Digital 2021 explored the theme Embracing New Monetization Frontiers through conversations like Identifying the New Monetisation Sources; How Catalogue can be Optimised; Today and Tomorrow’s Consumption Habits; How to Build your International Development Strategy; How to Make the Most of the DIY and Services Ecosystem; and more.

Music Plus covered the conference in real time but here are some insights across four days that transcend geographical boundaries and resonate with global audiences, including the Indian music territory.

True to Midem’s legacy, the conference was kicked off by French Minister of Culture, Roselyne Bachelot. A highlight of the inaugural day was the discourse around Services Facilitating a More Equitable Music Industry that highlighted the democratic nature of music discovery through social media with a hat tip to Nimco Happy’s viral song ‘Isii Nafta‘. “Back in the day, there were gatekeepers for people to get their music out there and now all you need is a phone and access to the internet and the fans have become the gatekeepers now,” said Addy Awofisayo, Head of Music, Sub-Saharan Africa, YouTube. The sentiment was echoed by Denis Ladegaillerie, Founder and CEO of Believe, a French distribution and services company, in another panel titled Building the Music Company of the Future which incidentally also covered his company’s IPO impact along with his vision for the future. MIDiA Research UK’s Mark Mulligan (CEO) and Kriss Thakrar (Research Consultant) who took up deciphering the gig economy’s intricacies.

Day two saw SoundCloud’s Eliah Seton (President) and Warner Music’s Lauren Wirtzer-Seawood (Chief Content and Marketing Officer) talk about Fan Economy and artist services. “Our consumption patterns are accelerated due to COVID that is how 2022 will be defined for the music industry. It has brought fans and artists closer and that’s going to stay,” said Seton. International DJ, producer, and entrepreneur Steve Aoki offered advice and milestones from his own journey in mastering many trades to become a multi-hyphenated artist. The next day witnessed a natural progression from fan and gig economy to a chat with Ole Obermann, Global Head of Music, TikTok (UK). “It’s cliched but authenticity is what drives the song towards success. The TikTok creators don’t want to be promoted to, it has to feel organic. The trick is to work directly with a creator to understand how to tap into a mood/vibe and create somethings that’ll take off,” he said.

Finally, on the concluding day, Midem Digital 2021 broke down the worth of livestreaming with Twitch’s Tracy Chan (VP, Head of Music) and Trivium’s vocalist Matt Heafy. “Live streaming isn’t a replacement for live gigs but it’s a great addition. Streaming BTS from tours, hosting live concerts for the audience that’s online works as an additional financial outlet,” said Heafy.

Check out more Music Plus coverage of Midem Digital 2021 here

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