SXSW PanelPicker: Music Tips and Success Stories

The 2016 SXSW Music Conference

SXSW PanelPicker, the online process for submitting SXSW Conference sessions, is now open!

Every year, we get hundreds of fantastic ideas from you, the bright minds of the music industry, and they become the bedrock of our Conference programming. Here's what's new for 2017 and what makes some ideas stand out from the pack in this very competitive process:

First, some general rules of thumb for your entries: focus on depth, not width, propose experienced and diverse speakers, deliver creative and cutting-edge topics, and use proper grammar. Seriously.

Solo, Dual, and Panel formats are the most common, but don't forget about Meet Ups and Mentor Sessions! if you feel you can successfully help promote and mediate an hour-long Meet Up, or want to participate as an expert Mentor for one-on-one sessions, let us know via PanelPicker.

Also new for Music in 2017 are 2-hour Workshop sessions. These are more in-depth, hands-on, and RSVP-only, and require a little more preparation and knowledge, but it's a great way to really dive deep and share your expertise on a subject.

2017 Music-focused Conference programming is now divided into four overarching tracks:

Making Music
There is so much to learn and share about the process of creating, writing, playing, and sharing music in today's world. Explore the future of making music, and how you can make your music better, more easily, and more creatively.

Music Industry
Experts and thought-leaders will guide you through today's multi-faceted and global music business. Learn about bleeding-edge innovations and get real-world advice and thoughtful examinations of our industry that can help you succeed as a professional, entrepreneur, or artist.

Music Influencers
Music has a rich history, and some amazing (often legendary) stories to tell. Superstars and up-and-comers alike have wisdom and perspectives to share. Find inspiration, insight, and guidance from the brightest in the music world.

Touring & Live Experience
Venues and festivals, large and small, support the dynamic touring industry that so many artists rely on, increasingly, for their livelihoods. Discover the newest innovations and sage advice on today's touring and festival industry.

You can browse through all of our Music-focused Conference programming from 2016 for a broad idea of what makes the grade, and visit the SXSW PanelPicker page for more detailed info on the process. Here are four examples of great entries from 2016 that had the right stuff, from the get-go:

Pop Music Production - Four notable DJs, writers, and producers discuss their methods in-depth, from start to finish.
Representations of Women in Music Media - Stellar lineup, clear point of view, diversity, resonated with the SXSW audience.
Getting the Most Bang for Your Touring Buck - Expert in niche field not directly tied to music, paired with a music industry heavy-hitter for two great viewpoints and strong, unique takeaways.
The 'Brand' New Patrons - Four veteran branding experts giving direct advice about an emerging, increasingly important revenue source.

We can’t wait to see what fantastic ideas come in, but don't wait - PanelPicker closes Sunday, July 24 (final deadline extension). Good luck!

Enter Now

Photo by Jon Currie

By Bobby Nall