Friday, December 23, 2016

Industry executives reflect on 2016

We have asked industry executives what was the best and worst of last year, their wishes for 2017 and what music made them tick in 2016. [Some answers have appeared in Music Week]
 

Martin Bandier
Chairman and CEO
Sony/ATV

1.     What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016? 
2.     What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

To answer both questions, the best and worst thing is streaming. Streaming has surpassed physical and digital download sales and its growth seems endless. However, the bad news is that our songwriters are not being fairly paid in the streaming world, which is undermining what they do and threatening their livelihoods. 

3.     What was your favourite track and album of 2016? (NB: Not one of your own please)   

The single Let Me Love You by DJ Snake featuring Justin Bieber and the Chance The Rapper album Coloring Book. 

4.     Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017? (NB: Fine to promote one of your own artists here if you like)   

Cam, Khalid, Ayokay.

5.     What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017?

The industry makes a concerted effort to protect itself from the shortcomings of YouTube, which severely undervalues and under reports the music played on its service. We hope YouTube mends its way, which will benefit songwriters, music publishers, artists and record companies.


Bill Colitre
Vice President and General Counsel
Music Reports, Inc. 

1. What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016? 

The rapid maturation of the streaming model, which has created the preconditions to move the business from early-adopters and youth demos to a mainstream audience and thereby grow revenues more steeply in 2017.  

2. What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016? 

The vote of no confidence in globalization represented by Brexit and the victory of the Trump campaign, which will slow treaties like TPP and TTIP, hindering growth for the business.

3. What was your favourite track and album of 2016?

Favorite Track: Don’t Hurt Yourself – Beyonce ft. Jack White (a devastatingly effective artist pairing) 
Favorite Album: Connie Price & The Keystones “Wildflowers” (Expanded Edition).
"Connie Price and the Keystones are to be praised for their originality and brilliance.” – Lalo Schifrin

4. Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017?

Anderson.Paak  

5. What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017?

That mainstream consumer awareness, maturing millennials, connected cars, and voice recognition technology will bring a wave of subscriber adoption and with it a long awaited surge of revenue for recorded music.


James Donio
President
Music Business Association (Music Biz)

1.   What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

The continued rise and consumer embrace of on-demand streaming services. Because revenues from streaming were up 56% year-over-year, the US music business saw an overall revenue increase of 8.1% at the mid-point of the year. This was the the biggest revenue jump in two decades, according to the RIAA. With streaming showing no signs of slowing down, we are seeing the foundation for a new growth era for the music industry.

2.   What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

The sheer number of era-defining artists, producers, music executives, and more who passed away this year. We are mourning the loss of our former Board Treasurer John Trickett and Co-Founder Ed Snider. Our hearts also go out to David Bowie, Prince, Glenn Frey, Merle Haggard, Maurice White, Zia Records’ Brian Faber, the TJ Martell Foundation’s Tony Martell (who we honored at Music Biz 2016), and all those we lost.

3.   What was your favourite track and album of 2016?

This is always a tough question to answer given the multitude of new music I am lucky enough to hear every day. But, I would have to say my favorite new track would be Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop The Feeling” from the Trolls soundtrack. I’ll confess, I am a “died in the wool” mainstream Pop fan. My favorite album of 2016 would have to be Barbra Streisand’s Encores set featuring duets with movie stars singing Broadway tunes.

4.   Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017?

Music Biz has a tradition of honoring breakthrough artists every year. We are recognizing Maren Morris and Lukas Graham at our Music Biz 2017 Awards Luncheon in May, so I would have to say I am most excited to continue to follow the next phases of their already burgeoning careers.

5.   What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017?

I would like to see the industry redouble its efforts to expand music business education programs. As an Adjunct Professor at Monmouth University, this is a passion of mine, and a challenge we have addressed at Music Biz with our Academic Partnership Program. The music industry is constantly changing, and we need highly trained future executives. Education is crucial to ensuring the next generation rises to the task.


Daniel Glass
Founder and CEO
Glassnotes

1.   What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

In 2016, streaming partners bringing in label and artist relations teams to establish a more artist friendly culture.  This has ushered in a new era where music rights, wages and content creation are at the forefront of the business. 

2.   What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

The worst thing was the sad passing of so many talented artists and musicians. A distant second would be exclusives. 

3.   What was your favourite track and album of 2016? (NB: Not one of your own please)

Album: Charles Bradley - Changes and Kanye West - Life of Pablo are tied.
Song: LDJ Snake Ft. Justin Bieber - Let Me Love You

4.   Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017? (NB: Fine to promote one of your own artists here if you like)

James Hersey 

5.   What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017?

My biggest wish is that we can all go to clubs, festivals and arenas and feel safe. 


Justin Kalifowitz 
CEO
Downtown Music Publishing   

1.   What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

Judge Stanton rejecting the DOJ’s interpretation of the BMI consent decree.  

2.   What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?    

The DOJ’s interpretation of the consent decree. 

 3.   What was your favourite track and album of 2016?   

Bowie’s “Blackstar”    

4.   Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017?    

Jillian Jacqueline, a young artist signed to us in Nashville who is working on her debut album for Big Loud Records.  

5.   What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017?    

US Congress decides that the government shouldn’t be involved in regulating a songwriter’s income. 


Golnar Khosrowshahi
President 
Reservoir Media Management 

1)       What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016? 

The dramatic growth in streaming royalties coupled with the forecasted growth of the subscriber base in the next 24 to 36 months. 

2)       What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

The United States Justice Department’s attempt to increase government regulations on our industry through mandatory 100% licensing. 

3)       What was your favourite track and album of 2016? (NB: Not one of your own please) 

Coldplay’s Hymn for the Weekend – track 
Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble Sing Me Home – album 

4)       Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017? (NB: Fine to promote one of your own artists here if you like) 

Dua Lipa 

5)       What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017?

That the DMCA safe harbor protection for tech behemoths such as Google and Facebook is updated to help copyright owners.
 

Cary Sherman
Chairman & CEO Company
RIAA  

1. What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?  

For one, we saw the number of paid subscriptions to services like Apple Music, TIDAL, Spotify and others more than double year-over-year (9.1m in 1H'15 to 18.3m in 1H'16). On the other side of the dime, there was unprecedented unity within the music community this year with the recognition that DMCA-reliant sites like YouTube are not paying fairly, crystallised in an ad signed by more than 180 artists -- across all genres and all generations -- that ran in various news outlets.  

2. What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016? 

I'd say all the iconic musicians we lost this year. From Leonard Cohen to Prince to George Martin to Milt Okun to David Bowie to Glenn Frey to Leon Russell and so many others, we lost so many voices that helped shape our culture and us, the fans, as people. It's tough every year, but I feel like this year, perhaps even more so.  

3. What was your favourite track and album of 2016? (NB: Not one of your own please) 

I'm a big fan of Justin Timberlake's, and I really liked his "Can't Stop The Feeling!" As for albums, I thought Lady Gaga's "Joanne" was/is really incredible. I also really liked The Chainsmokers' "Collage.”  

4. Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017? (NB: Fine to promote one of your own artists here if you like)  

I've been listening to a band called The Struts who are playing our holiday charity event this year with Musicians On Call. I think they're going to be really fun and energetic. They're on the rise in the U.S. and I'm excited to see what happens with them, backed by the great team at Interscope.  

5. What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017? 

I'd like to see more of that collaborative spirit that emerged this year continue into next year. We need to continue to work together to solve our industry's problems. No legislation will be passed or initiative green-lit if one sector is against it. 2017 will have some pivotal moments -- potential copyright reform legislation, a Copyright Office report on the DMCA -- and if we approach these in a collaborative fashion we might actually be able to get something done.


Paul Williams
President
ASCAP  

1. What was the best thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

The best thing was that ASCAP and BMI joined forces in an unprecedented partnership to overturn the DOJ’s decision on 100% licensing, and to fight for changes to music licensing regulations so that songwriters and composers can earn full value for their work. It’s been truly gratifying working with our friends at BMI on behalf of all music creators, and we’ll continue our combined efforts in 2017. 

2. What was the worst thing that happened to the music biz in 2016?

We lost true musical giants - some of the most iconic, prolific, exceptional songwriters the world has ever seen —David Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen, Maurice White, Glenn Frey, Merle Haggard, and on a personal level, my brother, songwriter Mentor Williams. We’re fortunate that they gave us so much for which to remember them. It’s sad to see them go but their music lives on.  

3. What was your favourite track and album of 2016? (NB: Not one of your own please)

I'm excited about all the great music released in 2016, and how so much of it was embraced by audiences across genres. As the president of ASCAP there are so many incredible songs I listen to - asking me to name one would be like picking a favorite child!

4. Which new artist are you most excited about for 2017? (NB: Fine to promote one of your own artists here if you like)

I'm sure there are many wonderful new artists I haven’t even heard yet, but i've become a huge fan of Allison Iraheta and Halo Circus. I hope someday they'll get the kind of international attention they deserve.

5. What’s your biggest wish for the music industry in 2017? 

That songwriters and composers are recognized for the value we bring to the music industry, and that we continue working with all stakeholders to build a stronger future for music. The world needs music now more than ever.

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