Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Thank You, Chicago!

FMC staff just got back from the land of Bears and brats, and, while we're happy to be home, we're already wondering how we're gonna find an excuse to get back to the Windy City.

We had blast at both the "What's the Future for Musicians?" event (Sept. 22), and the Hideout Block Party (Sept. 20-21). Chicago is a mighty fine city, and we were honored to give its musical inhabitants some tips about the challenges and opportunities of this digital era.

Special thanks to our friends at Illinois PIRG who volunteered to run our table at the Block Party on Saturday. We took the reins on Sunday, spreading the word about our Rock the Net campaign and the importance of net neutrality to the music community. Beers were drank, music was heard and info was exchanged throughout a gorgeous Windy City afternoon and evening.

The following day was the "What's the Future for Musicians?" seminar, which took place at the incredible Old Town School of Folk Music — a 50 year-old music education institution that proved a perfect fit for FMC. Many, many thanks to all of the OTS staff and volunteers who acted as true partners in on this event.

The seminar itself was well-attended and well-received, with participants engaging with our expert panelists and presenters on a wide range of subjects including new revenue streams for musicians, digital promotion and distribution services, podcasting and webcasting, the "greening" of music and much more.

A particular hit was the special conversation with the Numero Group — a Chicago-based label that uncovers and releases a wide range of music lost to history, from foreign pop sides to forgotten American soul and R&B. Label honchos Ken Shipley and Rob Sevier were joined by Chicago Tribune music critic Greg Kot for an informal exchange that we could've listened to for hours. Alas, thre was more to get to, including the net neutrality presentation and Policy Roundtable.

FMC staff was in full effect, participating in panel discussions, presentations and breakout sessions. Stay tuned for audio and video archives of the day's activities. In the meantime, check out these Flickr shots taken by Events Organizer Chhaya Kapadia.

The whole shebang was part of One Web Day — a global celebration of the open internet. Suffice it to say, we were thrilled to be part of such a dynamic and important event.

If you're closer to the New York City area, you should register for our next "What's the Future for Musicians?" event, which takes place at The Public Theater on October 6. Admission is $25, tough a limited number of musician scholarships are available. Space is filling up quickly; reserve your spot now!

What's the Future for Musicians — NYC
Oct. 6, noon-7 PM
Musician Scholarships
Spread the Word

Immediately following the musician education event (and cocktail party!) at The Public is "Creative License: A Conversation About Music Sampling, and Fair Use," which kicks off at 7 PM.

More info on that event can be found here.

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