Posts Tagged ‘live music’

F3’s trip to Austin for the South by Southwest festivals was quite productive and successful.

Our goals in attending were to make contacts in the film and music industries in our ongoing push for new strategic partnerships for FargoTube, to create interest among bands, labels, artist managers and filmmakers who will use the platform, and to learn more about their needs. We exceeded our goals, and we expect several of the relationships to bear fruit over the coming months as FargoTube gains partnerships, entertainment content and subscribers.

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the festivals was the film component. As you probably realize, the bulk of FargoTube’s artists and users are in the music space, and the SXSW Film Festival, in the early part of last week, was our first major opportunity to introduce FargoTube to filmmakers and get their feedback. We talked with several dozen filmmakers in documentary, short-form and serials, including many whose emphasis on social-media marketing makes FargoTube an ideal platform. In the course of our conversations with filmmakers, we discovered that a couple of FargoTube’s capabilities are even more important than we had realized, and we intend to focus more of our marketing efforts on these features.

We met with quite a few entertainment-industry companies that are potential partners in fields ranging from music distribution and management to order fulfillment to manufacturers of branded merchandise. Conversations with many of these are continuing this week and beyond.

Lastly, we continued to learn more about the music industry, both in individual conversations with industry people and in the 10 or so discussion panels we attended. One of the most interesting for me was a panel on pricing strategies, which covered loss leaders and cash cows, single-track versus EPs versus full-length albums, and discussion of how ticket sales and music sales can drive one another. Another panel focused on the changing role of managers in a world where artists are expected to handle their own online social networking.

All in all, it was a very successful week, and we’ll look forward to telling you about the relationships that grow out of it as they come to fruition.

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The four of us have had a very busy week in Austin, Texas, where the South by Southwest music, film and interactive festival runs through Saturday.

We’ve met with a stream of musicians, managers and agents, filmmakers, venture capitalists, app developers and others in the entertainment industries. The response seems to have been pretty good. I was on my feet for nearly the entire seven hours between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m., giving FargoTube demonstrations at our trade show booth. The trade show continues through this afternoon. Frank, Paul and Stephanie have been attending two or three discussion panels every day, and “speed dating” with potential partners from entertainment and investment industries.

The fun continues tomorrow morning with a breakfast event before the trade show reopens.

More detail when we catch our breath…

Up into the Attic

Posted: December 3, 2010 by chrisbagley in F3 Technologies, FargoTube, Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

We’re continuing to upload music to the Eddie’s Attic fan site on FargoTube. As we announced earlier in the week, Eddie’s Attic is now using FargoTube to sell recordings from weekly performances and as a fan site.

Eddie’s Attic is a highly respected venue for musicians. It’s relatively small and intimate, which makes it especially good in a region that has more than its share of acoustic and folk musicians, and plenty of singer-songwriters. It has played an early role in the success of several well known musicians, including Sugarland and John Mayer.

We expect the weekly uploads to be popular among fans who miss a Monday and have to download, and among audience members who want recordings of their favorite tracks from the evening.  Moreover, the relationship will introduce FargoTube to  hundreds of the South’s best unsigned musicians, who represent a key market for us.

The music continues next week when we upload the music from Monday night’s performance. Stay tuned.

I decided to tag along with F3’s sales team to NextBigNashville a couple of weeks ago. Paul Campbell, Stephanie Miller, and I busily attended conferences addressing the problems that independent artists — and even signed artists — are still having in distributing their creative works and profiting from them.

 


Performance at the famous Bluebird Cafe!

 

The Nashville scene is very unpretentious when compared to other music scenes I’ve been exposed to. I must admit to being more tuned in to the rock-music industry, but Nashville was a very comfortable place for me, probably because I play guitar and keyboards, and even played professionally for several years in the ’80s. (Look as hard as you want, you won’t find any pictures of me, my clothes, or my hair at the time; thankfully, the internet as we know it was not yet invented , and cameras still had film.)

As I settled in to the conference great room where everyone could meet, relax, eat lunch and socialize, I set out apart from Paul and Stephanie and plopped down at a table with what I thought was a BIG country star, trimmed ShoLo hair, boots, crisp jeans, he had the Country Star look for sure. Others were at the table, too, but I “knew” this was the right guy.

I sat down and introduced myself, which prompted the others at the table to begin introducing themselves; the guy I thought was the BIG country star was actually a BIG Nashville attorney who represents all your favorite country stars; however, the guy to my right, who looked like my last waiter at Chili’s, turned out to be the songwriter Chas Sandford. Admittedly, I had no idea who I was speaking with, but I am a musician and genuinely respect and admire all fellow artists.

 


Chas Sandford (courtsey of chassandford.com)

 

Remember, I told you country music wasn’t my strongest skill set? It turns out that Chas (yes, we’re on a first-name basis now) had not done so badly for himself. I later learned that as a hit songwriter and publisher, he won twelve ASCAP “Most Performed Songs” awards, including John Waite’s “Missing You,” Chicago’s “What Kind of Man Would I Be” and Stevie Nicks’ “Talk To Me.” His songs have also been recorded by Tina Turner, Rod Stewart, Melanie, Roger Daltrey, Berlin, Millie Jackson, Brooks & Dunn, Alison Krauss, Rick Springfield, Sammy Hagar, Jimmy Barnes, Don Johnson, David Wilcox, Tyler Hilton, Sheila B. Devotion and others.

So, I am now speaking with a couple of key people in the music industry – wouldn’t you agree? — and eating lunch (which F3 co-sponsored) with my new friends.  The conversation with Chas and the big Nashville lawyer would be the first of many — with artists from ALL genres —  lamenting over the same problem:

I own this entire library of my music, and I have no idea what to do with it, how to market it, or how to distribute it.

 

Ken Paulson, CEO, First Amendment Center; singer Caleb Folowill, Kings of Leon; Ken Levitan, producer and manager

 

I also attended several sessions of the conference that focused on the issues of digital distribution rights that face these artists and labels. I heard repeatedly that the record companies have not always kept up with the times: Some still do business like they did in the ’70s, and that can be cumbersome, time-consuming, and expensive.  I believe this is one of the reasons why 40 percent of today’s musicians are independent (including some huge players such as Garth Brooks, Kiss, and Kings of Leon). Independent artists organized a conference on their own initiative to try to solve some of the digital-rights issues.

Now, here came my epiphany, after attending the panel discussions and meeting IP attorneys and managers and musicians from the genres of hip hop, rock, country, and alternative. I realized that…

FargoTube solves 95 percent of the digital rights, distribution, and royalties issues that conference attendees had been chewing over for the past two days!

Wow! I was really excited, and since I’ve played music most of my life (yes, even at church as a kid), I had finally grasped the magnitude of F3’s opportunity.

Dozens of musicians at the conference — and indeed the conference itself — were broadcasting the message “Nashville, we’ve had a problem.”

F3’s response: “Don’t worry, Nashville, FargoTube is the solution!”

Coming Soon: Look for my next entries as I explain why 99-cent Itoons (sic) has not been the answer to digital rights management, sales, distribution and marketing, give my report on F3’s top-notch sales-team, as well as introducing you to more of the artists and bands I have met and spoken with. Till then…

Steve Haag handles investor relations for F3 Technologies. He is principal at SmallCap Support Services in Houston. He can be reached at (832) 201-7913 and shaag@smallcapss.com.

A slideshow of Steve’s photos from NBN is below:

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