How to Make a Living in the Rise of DIY Music

Featured Session Wyclef Goes Back To School - Photo by Tim Strauss

With streaming services on the rise – from established platforms like YouTube to newer kids on the block like TikTok – music monetization quickly has become the name of the game. Never in the history of music recording has it been more accessible for artists to share their music. But in a culture of DIY-producing and promoting, how do up-and-coming artists keep up and thrive in this dynamic space?

At the 2020 SXSW Conference, one of our two Music Tracks provides context around this question. The Creating & Monetizing Music Track will educate, inform, and equip everyone from artists to executives with the skills and tools they need to develop new opportunities.

Tuning into the do-it-yourself spirit of artists, dive into sessions that offer guidance on monetization success in the evolving music industry including new platforms for engagement, artists’ legal rights, the importance of metadata, and more.

Bridging the Gap Between Platforms and Musicians

Popular singles like Lil Nas X’s “Old Town Road” have blown up in mere seconds through social media but how exactly does this happen? Is there a strategy behind the success of a viral hit? Director of Music Content and Artist Relations at TikTok Mary Rahmani sees the power of bite-sized content. Along with music industry leaders Evan Parness (BMI) and Rigo Morales (Atlantic Records), Rahmani explores how artists can specifically tailor content to various platforms like TikTok and Snapchat to capitalize on audience engagement and monetize their work during How the Rise of Short Form Content Impacts Music.

Despite there being more ways for artists to monetize their work, nearly three-quarters of independent artists earn less than $10,000 a year. Show Me the Money: Self-Release Music & Get Paid will provide navigation for DIY artists when it comes to getting a paycheck on the other end of their uploads. Dani Deahl covers the intersection of music, technology, and policy for The Verge and is an artist herself. Joined by Diego Fariashe (Amuse), they will lead the charge as speakers share testimonies and advice for today’s artists.

A Lesson on Artist’s Rights

In a world of digital streaming and social platforms it is all about metadata – the key to monetization for artists. Metadata needs to be synchronized across all kinds of industry databases to make sure that when a song is played, the right people are identified and paid appropriately. In Metadata: The Biggest Problem in Music Rights, Product Lead Music Rights at Gracenote Barbara Finney will speak about the role of metadata and how it can be used to solve the music rights conundrum.

Artists, labels, and publishers must have a clear understanding of how they are searched, discovered, and paid the appropriate royalties. Explore different solutions that are being implemented to make sure artists and songwriters don’t end up “royalty” screwed.

Explore More Sessions in the Creating & Monetizing Music Track

If these topics interest you, search through the full Future Music Track schedule. Find all of our cross-industry sessions and speakers on the complete SXSW 2020 Schedule.

To see all of these speakers live, participate in meetups, and discover the latest in emerging technologies, film, and music, register to attend today and book your hotel through SXSW Housing & Travel. We can’t wait to see you in March!

And as always, to stay up-to-date on the latest SXSW News, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram.

Dive into 2019 Music Tracks

Photo by Tim Strauss

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