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Music Matters 2013 : Metadata - Knowledge Is Power (and Money)

Having correct and clean metadata is increasingly vital for artists, publishers, producers, and labels to receive their correct royalties. In the digital age, the money trail dies when your metadata is incorrect. How do content owners take full advantage of their various revenue streams?

Simon Wheeler, Director of Digital, Beggars Group
Prashant Bahadur, Vice President, Strategy, The Orchard
Bill Wilson, Vice President, Digital Strategy & Business Development, NARM
Bernie Cho, President, DFSB Kollective
Raoul Chatterjee, Senior Vice President Music, 7digital

Moderator: Stephen White, CEO, Gracenote


Established in 2006 and dubbed as "TED meets SXSW" by Jason Mraz, Music Matters has hosted some of the biggest names in the entertainment business.  The event is the pioneer music industry event in the Asia Pacific region and it is the yearly gathering of the most influential figures in the global music business.

In the last eight years, Music Matters has hosted some of the biggest names in the entertainment business including Justin Timberlake’s Manager, Johnny WrightLady Gaga's Manager, Troy Carter; Legendary Music and Entertainment Producer, Bob Ezrin; leading rock band U2's Manager, Paul McGuinness; Producer, Steve Lillywhite; President of Sony Network Entertainment's Tim Schaff; Spotify CEO and visionary Daniel Ek and music A-listers and Grammy Award winning artists such as Jason MrazImogen Heap and Jamie Cullum. 

Music Matters is part of our week long flagship event in May that has housed an extraordinary showcase of Branded produced events covering all that matters in music, social media and online video including Music Matters Live festival and Music Matters Academy, Digital Matters and the YouTube FanFest. 

Driven by Branded’s cornerstone event Music Matters over the last eight years, the week has become Asia's entertainment industry’s yearly gathering for showcasing innovation, sharing success stories and collaborating with partners for new business models. This year, after much demand, the week that matters is expanding to include Social Media Matters , one of the most renowned advertising events in Asia which is a JV between Branded and global leading advertising agency Ogilvy & Mather.

Featured Panelist : Bernie Cho (DFSB Kollective)


Billboard : How K-Pop Is Conquering America and Beyond at Film TV Music Conference

From left: Kye Kyoungbon Koo, Director, KOCCA USA; Bernie Cho, president, DFSB Kollective; Ted Kim, president/CEO, MNET America/EVP & head strategic planning and busienss dev., CJ Entertainment & Media; Alina Moffat, GM, US, YG Entertainment; Kevin Morrow, SVP, N. American touring, Live Nation, John Shim, Sr. producer, MTV World; Billboard's Phil Gallo at the Billboard THR Film TV Music Conference's "Beyond K-pop: The Global Impact of Music and Visuals" panel. (Photo: Arnold Turner)
PSY's "Gangnam Style" put K-Pop on the world's radar in 2012, but a panel on the musical style revealed an infrastructure in place that wholly covers recording, marketing and touring. Licensing around the globe is the next frontier.

Read All Our Film TV Music Conference Coverage HERE

Bernie Cho, president of DFSB Kollective, which assists some 350 K-pop acts find international audiences, was among the speakers on the panel "Beyond K-pop: The Global Impact of Music and Visuals" Thursday at Billboard's 11th Annual Film & TV Music Conference at the W Hotel in Hollywood. He said the genre's breakthrough came in 2008, when South Korea connected with YouTube, and continued in 2009 when it joined forces with iTunes.

"Artists using YouTube created commercial opportunities to promote themselves worldwide, and iTunes created revenue worldwide," he explained. YouTube views of K-pop videos in America more than doubled from 2010 to 2011. "Gangnam Style," with half a billion views worldwide on YouTube and counting, has exposed the appeal of the catchy, video-friendly South Korean dance genre.

From This Week's Billboard: How PSY Went From Viral Video To American Pop Sensation With Help From Scooter Braun

PSY records for YG Entertainment, which is similar to many K-pop companies in that it is a combination talent agency and label run by a former Korean artist. Unlike dance music in many other cultures, K-pop artists often wrote their own material, making it more self-sufficient than many other pop styles.

From left: Aki Kaneko, Billboard; Kyoungbon Koo, Director, KOCCA USA; Billboard publisher, Tommy Page (Photo: Arnold Turner)

Alina Moffat is the general manager of the American counterpart of a Korean talent agency and record label, YG Entertainment U.S., said that PSY's success is, they hopes, the start of something bigger.

"This has allowed the world to see what they've been doing all along," she said. "The spotlight is shining and saying, there's creativity there, there's money there. It's a chance to say, this is what we do - get on board."

Moffat, on board at YG for less than a year, said the industry is new to the idea of licensing tracks for use in television and film. Part of the reasoning for having U.S. divisions of K-pop companies is to simplify and speed up licensing and publishing processes that are foreign to the Korean business.

One area that has been successful is touring where acts are packaged and play large theaters and arenas. Kevin Morrow, a former Live Nation concert promoter who first booked a K-pop concert in the U.S. seven years ago, said the "value-added stuff they give consumers" go far beyond anything other acts provide. Concert-goers receive gift bags and can go onstage after the show to have their photo taken -- sometimes with the acts and sometimes just on the set.

"That's great marketing," he says. "It creates fan loyalty."

With a population of 50 million, the K-pop industry has been aware of the need to export its pop stars for some time. The performers learn local languages, including English and Japanese, to expand their audiences and tour; with hundreds of television competition shows on the air there is no shortage of potential hitmakers.

"In Asia, 'I want to be a pop star' is not something you could say a decade ago," said Ted Kim, president and CEO of MNET America, which brings Asian pop culture to American audiences. "Now, it's considered acceptable, even desirable."

Panel Action Shot (from left): Kevin Morrow; Alina Moffat; Ted Kim; Bernie Cho; John Shim; Phil Gallo (Photo: Arnold Turner)

Featured Panelist : Bernie Cho (DFSB Kollective)


Korea JoongAng Daily : Korea’s overlooked indie bands hitting the road

Korean indie bands, from left, Crying Nut, Galaxy Express and 3rd Line Butterfly, perform during the Seoulsonic North American tour this year and last year. Provided by DFSB Kollective
Ask random Koreans on the streets of Seoul if they’ve heard of punk band Crying Nut and chances are they’ll be able to name at least a few songs from its long list of hits. But during their North American tour this spring, the country’s best-selling indie rock act performed as if they were nameless newcomers in front of millions of people who had no idea who they were.

The members, however, say they’d do it again in a heartbeat.

“It was so much fun - like a busy Friday night in Hongdae [an area in Seoul known for its underground rock scene] times 100. The streets were brimming with energy,” says Lee Sang-myun, Crying Nut’s guitarist, on playing at South by Southwest, the largest indie music festival in the United States.

The influential five-member band, along with 3rd Line Butterfly, another first-generation indie act here, and rock band Yellow Monsters, toured the U.S. and Canada in March to early April. They performed at some of the biggest music events on the continent, including at the official showcases at South by Southwest (SXSW) in Austin, Texas, and Canadian Music Week (CMW) in Toronto, as well as famous clubs like the Viper Room in Los Angeles and Cafe du Nord in San Francisco.

The bands went not as individual acts but as a group, called Seoulsonic, a project started by Seoul-based music agency DFSB Kollective to introduce Korean indie music to the West.

“If you talk about Hyundai Motor, it is going to be at every major motor show in the world. If you talk about Korean film, they are going to Cannes, Berlin or Toronto. But when it comes to music, Korean music was never represented at any of the music festivals or conferences in the world,” said Bernie Cho, president and strategic planning director of DFSB Kollective.

“And that, to me, was shocking. That’s why we decided that if we are going to promote Korean music, we need to do what other countries are doing.”

Investing money that DFSB Kollective earned through its core business - selling Korean records overseas through iTunes - Seoulsonic started last year by bringing local indie acts Idiotape, Galaxy Express and Vidulgi Ooyoo to the North American stage, concentrating on their official showcases at SXSW and CMW. The company plans to continue the success of previous tours and do another Seoulsonic North American tour next spring, with a new lineup including Goonamguayeo Riding Stella and Lowdown 30, among others.

Groups look abroad

While K-pop idol bands have been basking in the limelight overseas as the second wave of the Korean Wave spreads rapidly, their indie counterparts have been struggling with a flawed music distribution system and subsequent financial difficulties. It was less than two years ago that news of the death of indie musician Lee Jin-won (who went by the stage name Moonlight Nymph) and his financial strife alerted the nation to the structural problems of Korea’s music industry.

According to Cho, Hallyu was fueled by artists not because they want to go overseas, but because “they needed to go overseas.”

“Korea is a very fast-forward market and outsiders were looking into Korea and saying that it may be the future of the digital music industry,” says Cho.

“But although the perception was very rosy, the reality was very thorny because inside Korea, even though it was the fourth largest digital market for music in the world by 2007, everyone was making money except the artists.”

Industry critics have long pointed out the need to restructure the profit distribution system of the local music industry, which is acutely skewed toward major content providers while the creators of the content, the artists, get little in comparison.

Many Korean indie acts have started to look toward foreign markets, specifically Japan and the United States, to release records and get noticed. One of the most popular indie acts locally, Chang Kiha and the Faces, for instance, has released both of their full-length albums in Korea and Japan. Local acts also have begun to venture to major music festivals overseas. This summer, Korean indie band Jaurim will be a headliner at Summer Sonic Festival, one of the most important rock festivals in Japan, alongside Fuji Rock Festival, and a handful of other Korean bands, including Chang Kiha and the Faces and the KOXX, will perform there.

Jung Woo-min, a local indie musician with two full-length albums under her belt, released her first album in Korea while launching her second album in Japan, through Italy-based record label IRMA records, which has offices in Italy and Japan. Along with artists from Italy, Japan, the United States and Sweden, the record label also signed with three Korean artists, including Jung.

“The Korean indie scene can’t compare to the Japanese indie rock scene in either scale or variety,” says Jung.

“Although the industry in Korea has come a long way and there is now a wide array of musicians doing different genres, there is a sense that the scene as a whole hasn’t yet stabilized and is a bit too vulnerable for artists to fully commit to it.”

Rocking North America Top: Seoulsonic musicians at an impromptu street performance during the tour this year. Middle: A concert sign for Seoulsonic bands at the Viper Room in West Hollywood, California, in March. Above: Korean indie musicians during the 2011 tour enjoy some down time. Provided by DFSB Kollective

Although the tours weren’t without a few missteps, the bands that participated say the experience gave them a fuller, global perspective of the music industry that they otherwise would never have known.

“We went on the Seoulsonic tour with a kind of romanticized vision of performing in the U.S. in front of millions of people like we had seen in movies,” says Dguru, a member of electronic rock band Idiotape.

“But after a month of touring, we were quite humbled and realized that it takes much more than a few successful gigs at festivals to make a real impact in North America.

“To [Americans], bands like ours are just an unknown Asian group of guys that are not from Japan or China.”

Lee Sang-myun of Crying Nut says that there isn’t an indie act in Korea that doesn’t have ambitions to go abroad.

“In the past, we’ve even made English demos of our songs so that it would be easier for us to play at festivals abroad,” he says.

“We’ve performed at festivals in Japan and the U.S., but the more we go to these venues, the more we realize that it is really difficult to break through outside of Korea, whether it’s the language barrier or just getting across our music and our identity to people.”

Crying Nut members say this anonymity in North America fueled them to give 100 percent in every performance, something they admit is sometimes hard to do in Korea after 14 years of being active in the scene.

“We performed at this 100-year-old building for our official showcase at SXSW. We really gave our all and during the performance, because the audience was jumping so much, the top floor cracked and the building almost collapsed,” said Lee.

Regardless, the bands both agree that the music and performance level of Korean bands are up to those from the U.S., if not higher.

“It was shocking for me this time in the U.S., to see how the Korean bands playing at SXSW and CMW were so advanced. The bands were really strong live and compared to them, the American and Canadian bands were lagging behind in my opinion,” says Dguru.

“Watching all these bands in North America, I thought if Korean bands can do so well under the financially poor, weak structure of the Korean indie scene, who knows what we can do when the scene is as stable as the American indie scene is now?” says DR, drummer for Idiotape.

By Cho Jae-eun [jainnie@joongang.co.kr]

2012 SXSW Seoulsonic Showcase (Planning/Production/Promotion) : DFSB Kollective
International Agent/Distribution : DFSB Kollective



Release of New and Original Track
Available for Free Download at www.converse.com/music

(SEOUL KR) Today, CONVERSE Inc. announces the track release for its first-ever Korea based Three Artists. One Song collaboration. The music initiative brings together three diverse and unique Korean artists, featuring indie icons, Jaurim; rising hip-hop stars, Aziatix; and award-winning electronic act, Idiotape. The new track, “#PeepShow,” is available to music fans globally starting today via free download at www.converse.com/music

“#PeepShow” is a cross-pollination of three distinct music genres, weaving together Aziatix’ signature rap lyrics with Jaurim’s indie vocals and Idiotape’s electronic sound.  Recorded in Seoul, Korea, the genre-bending track pushes the dial on youthful expression and brings an edgy new sound to the Asia Pacific market.  Fueled by Idiotape’s driving bassline, Jaurim and Aziatix bring a new dimension to the song with their lyrical commentary on youth and pop culture.

“We’re excited to be a part of Three Artists. One Song and to bring a brand new concept to the Asia Pacific music scene.” said DGURU, front man of Idiotape. “By not limiting ourselves to any specific instrument or genre, we were able to come up with a very original and unique sound.”

“Converse embraces a rebellious young audience and the notion of self-expression,” said Eddie Shin, lead vocalist from Aziatix.  “With “#PeepShow,” we wanted to elevate this young voice and inspire creativity among music fans in Korea and beyond.”

Three Artists. One Song invites artists to come together and express themselves through the creation of an original track. Recent song collaborations include “Warrior” by Mark Foster (Foster the People), Kimbra and A-trak and “Doyathing” by world-famous Gorillaz, James Murphy (LCD Soundsystem) and Andre 3000 (OutKast). Now in its eighth series, the unique music platform launches in Asia Pacific, widening the scope for the celebration of international music talent.  Following the track release, a music video for “#PeepShow” will premiere at www.converse.com in June 2012.

About Jaurim
Named after a purple rainforest, Jaurim is lush modern rock quartet whose 15 years together as one of the best live bands in Korea have made them icons in the indie music scene. Nominated for “Best Live Performance” at the 2011 MNET Asian Music Awards, the dreamy foursome reigns as main stage headliner at Korea’s biggest international music festivals. Currently running their own Soundholic record label, Jaurim is busy producing new acts as well as preparing new tracks for their ninth studio album, slated for release later this year.

About Aziatix
Hailed as “Best New Asian Artist” at the 2011 MNET Asian Music Awards, Aziatix is a Korean-American urban hip-hop trio who has reached icon status in 2012. After gracing the Korean cover of Newsweek Magazine and completing a nationwide American concert tour, Asiatix released their second EP ‘Awakening’ and watched it not only hit #1 on K-Pop singles charts in Korea, but also soar to #1 on iTunes R&B/Soul album charts in US and Japan. This year Aziatix will continue their musical trailblazing by putting the finishing touches on their follow up full-length album.  

About Idiotape
Eliciting waves of rave reviews at the 2011 Canadian Music Week, the South by Southwest Music Festival, and Summer Sonic Japan, the electro-punk triad, Idiotape, returned to Seoul energized to mix-master one of the most critically acclaimed albums of the year, ‘11111101.’ Winner of “Best Electronic Dance Album of the Year” at the 2012 Korean Music Awards, Idiotape accepted an invitation to appear on the network TV show, SBS ‘U&I,’ and unleashed a smashing live set on unsuspecting primetime audiences, catapulting the band to become the #1 most searched online artist in Korea. Idiotape will be devoting the rest of the year to working on a batch of studio projects interspersed with a series of club and festival gigs.

About Converse
Converse Inc., based in N. Andover, Massachusetts, is a wholly owned subsidiary of NIKE, Inc. Established in 1908, the Converse brand has built a reputation as “America’s Original Sports Company”™ and has been associated with a rich heritage of legendary shoes such as the Chuck Taylor All Star shoe, the Jack Purcell shoe and the One Star shoe. Today, Converse offers a diverse portfolio including lifestyle men's, women's and kid’s footwear, apparel and accessories. Converse product is sold globally by retailers in over 160 countries and through 63 company-owned retail locations in the U.S. For more information on Converse in Korea, visit www.conversekorea.com.

Korean Music Project Director : DFSB Kollective
Korean Music Artist Booking Agent : DFSB Kollective


Music Matters Singapore 2012

(SINGAPORE) Supported by Singapore Tourism Board and Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA), Music Matters is the pioneer music industry event in the Asia Pacific region and is a gathering of key players in the global music industry, it is the annual meeting place of the entire value chain of the music business, from artists and mangers to record labels, promoters and music publishers.

In the past seven years, Music Matters has developed an excellent reputation in the market for delivering high quality agendas and facilitating unparalleled networking opportunities.

The programme will cover the music industry's most pertinent issues covering topics such as the role of brand sponsors, the rise in Asian music festivals, developments in music publishing, launching digital services and detail country focused sessions including China, India, Japan and Korea and many more topics. 

Music Matters has hosted some of the biggest names in the entertainment business such as leading rock band U2's Manager, Paul McGuinness, Producer, Steve Lillywhite, President of Sony Network Entertainment's Tim Schaff, Spotify CEO and visionary Daniel Ek and music A-listers and Grammy Award winning artists such as Jason Mraz, Imogen Heap and Jamie Cullum.

Music Matters is proudly co-located with Digital Matters produced in association with CASBAA, bringing the digital entertainment ecosystem under one roof.


Music Matters Live, with support from Official Festival Broadcast Partner, YouTube, will bring together local and international bands, in Singapore, to gain new fans, be discovered, and ROCK ON for three nights at the week that matters. Dubbed as Asia’s celebration of ‘live’ music, the festival features emerging and established bands from Asia and the world. This year’s festival will once again rock audiences at Clarke Quay in Singapore, for three nights.  There will be a dynamic line-up of almost 50 bands from the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Korea and more, together with some of Singapore’s best and most loved home-grown talents. Music Matters Live takes place from the 24-26th May, at several venues in and around Clarke Quay with the main stage at Central Fountain Square. Open to the public, the majority of performances have free entry and thanks to our partners at YouTube, the festival will be streamed ‘live’ for all to enjoy!


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