Students are connected to technology innovators in the music industry

The College’s In The Mix series continues this month, welcoming more guests to speak with students on topics within the music industry.  Presented by the Arts Management department, this month’s session explored the idea of technology within the music business.

A highlight of the event included developer, Sean Hubbard, informing students on the process it takes in order to develop a good company or business. Hubbard stressed that in order to be successful in an industry, you must first identify a problem and then find a solution for this problem. In doing so, you are “taking an idea and turning it into an actual company,” as Hubbard put.

The College's series introduces students to leaders in the music industry. (Photo courtesy of The College of Charleston)

The College’s series introduces students to leaders in the music industry. (Photo courtesy of The College of Charleston)

Students were also introduced to Josef Myers. This College of Charleston graduate’s resume can be found marked with numerous experiences that range from professional entertainer to promoter for major acts such as Kings of Leon and J.Cole. His latest venture is carrying out an idea that formed during his sophomore year at the College. Wanting to create a brand new and innovative way to connect with music, Myers produced the ERLI app. Connecting fans and listeners directly to the artists and musicians themselves, ERLI stands apart from popular music outlets such as Itunes and Spotify.

“I wanted to bring back that feeling of value in music, the feeling of going to the music store” expressed Myers.

Following Hubbard’s advice on how to start a successful company, Myer identified that one of the main issues that has arisen in today’s music industry is pirating. Due to technology and easy accessibility to download and share music, not only the music industry, but artists fail to receive the royalties or credit that they initially put into producing their music. With this in mind, Myers’ app “can limit something that is infinitely available.” By paying one dollar per month to subscribe to an artist, listeners have exclusive access to any artist’s new music before it is released. Subscribers can hear this exclusive content once and then once officially released, listeners own the song. In doing so, ERLI insures that the music industry is given credit for what they produce, all while pleasing the public and music fans everywhere. While still in its early stages, the app is to be expected on all platform mediums.

To close the session, the creator of DIG South, Stanfeild Gray informed students on how he started an initiative that now garners national attention. The Charleston native expressed that it was marketing and and promoting in the South, that lead to the realization that to find success in any industry, one must move from the South. Wanting a way to solve this issue, Gray looked into building a festival that would generate excitement and interaction in the South. The result was DIG South, a festival that today, features an interactive conference, trade show and nightly performances given by national touring bands.

The evenings discussion was moderated by Arts Management adjunct instructor, Mark Bryan.  Since last spring, In The Mix has connected nearly 500 students, musicians, music professionals and alumni to music industry professionals and even a few moguls.  On the success of the series, Bryan has commented that “Charleston is right on the edge of becoming a music center with all its talent and infrastructure and this series is a great way to provide our students and local musicians with unprecedented insight into various aspects of the music industry.”

Next, the series will look into Interviews and Live Performances on April 20, 2015.

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Chelsea Anderson is the Blog Editor for CisternYard News. She is a senior studying Communication at the College. Her journalistic journey began in high school while working with WTGR news. On any given day, you can find her watching soap operas, Keeping Up with the Kardashians or taking an intriguing Buzzfeed quiz.

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