Love Music not the German Musicbiz

Posted by: on Aug 28, 2017 | One Comment

It is a simple effort/effectiveness’ relationship analysis. I’m closing my #Musicbiz Page on Facebook and my Musicbiz Box on Scope. After 1,5 years, where I was highly motivated to change Germans Musicbiz Press landscape its time to look at the stats, to review and revise:

 

 

474 page likes in 1,5 years. I spent every day (7 days/week) minimum an hour to dig content for these 2 outlets. Reading, curating and writing. That’s not in the relation to the outcome. So, I will stop sharing on these platforms:

“Ich werde meine Musikbiz Box und Facebook Page einstellen. Es war ein toller Versuch, das Musicbiz mal ein bissen “aufzumischen”. Doch leider hat es so wenig Anklang gefunden, daß ich nun beschlossen habe diese Outlets nicht mehr zu bedienen. Ich gehöre halt nicht dem Deutschen Musicbiz Geklüngel an und als weiblicher “Futurist” wirst du in der Branche auch gar nicht erst bemerkt.”

It doesn’t mean I’m stopping every activity in the Musicbiz. Im still interested in all Musicbiz related topics. Reading, thinking and discussing things. Put out stuff via Twitter (@BarbNerdy), my fave medium anyway. And you can still hire me for strategy jobs.  (No, I’m still not doing SocialMedia Posts for other people). But I don’t want to spend all my spare time for curating and writing about Musicbiz relevant topics AND passing it on for free. It was a great experience and thanks to the great team at SCOPE for having me!

 

 

I’m active in thinking future music strategies already since 2009 (mostly via Twitter) when I became board member of the first attempt for better Musicbiz conferences in Germany, the A2N, where I also did panels in the 2 years of its existence. (Access vs. Ownership, Wie gehts eigentlich meinem Lieblingsplattenladen, Content is King, wo kaufe ich was) and not to forget the panel I did at the first Social Media Week in Berlin: The Future of Entertainment) You can find the descriptions and some of the videos in my first Blog –> here.

Sharing means Caring, my blog here will stay, I will post holiday pics, upcoming gigs, reviews of my new Garmin Vivoacitve HR (Amazon Partner link) or how I just started to like KOMOOT for bike rides. But I will not put anymore effort in promoting other people in the Musicbiz with doing interviews with people or writing analysis without an order.

From now on I will spend this time with digging and sharing music on my SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL GHETTO PAGE and Tumblr. Both pages don’t have huge fan base but digging, playing and sharing music itself is so much more rewarding for me. –> Spending my SPARETIME  in 2 fields where females are underrepresented is just too much for my soul…

 

I wanted to make a change in the German Musicbiz press, this didn’t work out.

 

What did I expect:

As there is no real Musicbiz media in Germany, my aim was to step in here with these 2 pages. (Scope and Facebook page).

  • I hoped to gain attraction on these topics and bring a lot of insights for musicians and labels and of course –> hoped to get more connected to the German Musicbiz organizations
  • I hoped to get a lively discussion forum which didn’t really happen.
  • I hoped to get asked to be part in think tanks, panel talks etc.. Nada.  Special thanks go out to the 3 people who mostly commented on there! As there is no musicbiz development happening in the Musicbiz in Germany I was NOT expecting to get a job in this field or to earn money with panelist-opportunities. I wanted to discuss things in public. With different stakeholders in the Musicbiz. For free. Crazy he?

But it’s as everywhere else: Without support you stuck. The page didn’t get a lot of attraction, didn’t get featured from many other people, organizations etc.. The most successful article was the one about the German Music Market: Umbruch des Musikmarkts in Zeiten des Internets . Till today it has gained more than 2.500 clicks. Just to put it in perspective: The interview I did with OYE Records was downloaded 135 times. (And it got no love aka “sharing” from the participants)

 

What did I do:

I got in touch personally with all relevant organizations and people in Germany. Some of them gave me tips like: You have to work for an important company to get heard (Tip from a dude). Aha… as far as I can see I worked for the most interesting companies in the Musicbiz within the last years. I experienced and was part of the digital disruption of the Musicbusiness from the front row…. It’s a bit like when “they” told me in the 90ies: Oh you have to make a record to get booked as a DJ.

Had a very long conversation with Co/Pop – no outcome, not even an answer on the follow up mails, just very late: oh sorry, I had too much on my … – but if we still have a hole in the program I will let you know. My answer: Oh yes, I’m a pretty good “Lückenbüßer” (gap filler). It was the time, when I pbulished the first link collection about Blockchain & Music articles.

Musicboard: Sat down personally there, introduced me and my skills, made suggestions. No answer to the follow up mails

Berlin Music Commission: The essay came out of an interview of a student project. Offered my knowledge many time: Nothing happened. I was already somehow involved with them since their first “Berlin Music CD” project back in the days.

Musicpool: Did 2 workshops. No follow ups from their side. Musicpool came out of the A2N. They are also responsible for the musicbiz topics at re:publica and more.

And last not least: VUT
Had a very long conversation end of last year there, where I offered my knowledge for think tanks, workshops etc.. Nothing happened. Follow up mails where not answered. Some weeks ago someone asked for female panelists for their event at the Reeperbahfest. So I “applied” on a FB post. Nothing happened. I asked my contact (Chief of VUT), what happened: Oh, that was out of my reach but I suggested you as a Social Media Expert for upcoming artists. Hmm… So, something went wrong. I’m not a social expert.

–> I’m a strategist, a futurist.

 

Some years ago the DigitalMediaWomen asked me, if I would be interested in “announcing” panel talks at the Reeperbahnfestival. Oh well… I was thinking a lot if I really want to do it, as I rather would like to discuss, than announcing. But the idea here was, to get known.. (I’m in the Musicbiz since 1992). My bad, that I agreed on it and it – of course – it was not good at all.

After I left iTunes (2007) as head of editorial, where I was responsible for the “face” aka content shown at iTunes when they started in Germany I had a talk with Soundcloud. They offered me a trainee position. And this after I had a job with a 75.000 / year salary. I’m pretty sure, if I would have better skills to sell myself I would have gathered a cool job there. But so, I’m just a women with bad self selling skills. (I never had to look for a job myself before, till this moment). I could fill pages with stories like this. Of course I always thought: Oh well…you are just not good enough etc…

 

Conclusion:

From my perspective in the German Musicbiz, it all has to do with membership but also with gender. Either you have to be a paying member as label/artist or a be a member in one of the – mostly male – circles.

Sadly, it’s not about knowledge.

I’m an independent and female music strategist which didn’t succeed to convince the people above that I  could be a decent partner to get in conversation about the current state of the international Musicbiz and about future strategies and markets. In Germany (only?) there is no place for people who are critical about the current situation, the “Vetternwirtschaft” (nepotism) makes it impossible. Specially, when you are an independent and future thinking FEMALE FUTURIST.

I wrote a huge rant on my FB page, cause I got really angry and very sad:

Rant:
Grade gelernt: Frauen in der Musikbranche können vielleicht bisserl Social Media machen. Aber als Futurists werden sie nicht wahrgenommen. F* U* Musicbiz. Doing this shit since many many years. Everyday reading, everyday posting, having discussions with international people.
–> In Germany: Oh, you could do some Social Media.
Will close all my Music Business News outlets soon.
Within the last years I talked to anyone here in Germany. CO/Pop, Katja Lucker, Berlin Music Comission, re:publica and recently had a long talk with VUT. And the outcome: Nothing. Nada.
I wrote a really long essay about the state of the Biz. And? Nothing. Nada.
Germany’s Musicbiz is not ready for the Females. Its just bla bla bla. It will change when all the old dickheads are gone there.
Always the same dudes sitting on panels, talking about totally irrelevant things like will VR change the Musicbiz instead of the real shit musicians need. What are the specs for a distributor, what can I do with my music etc… Keep on doing Germany’s Music Biz, you didn’t change since POPKOMM days back in the 90ies. Everything will stay the same. Shame on you.

Peace. & Music.
over and out.

 

 

And than the obvious happened, once you put out the possible gender “card”, you get comments like: You are too dogged (sick!), victim etc… The moment you talk about your own impressions of the situation it gets creepy.

I liked the last one from Larissa:

And yes, I think: Germany’s Musicbiz is NOT ready for independent females.
I received a lot of positive feedback either. Mostly via direct messages. Thanks for these! It was just about the time to put it out.  I know that I’m out of this circles completely now but it was worth it to address all these gender imbalanced things. I really hope that the next generation working in Germany on all this topics will bring a change. But sadly not before. Sometimes one has to burn one’s bridges behind one and start over again. Not in the German Musicbiz. Somewhere else.

 

LOVE MUSIC!

And keep on SHARING MEANS CARING

 

ABOUT ME:

Working since 1992 in the Musicbiz. Startet as booker in Munich for DJ Hell, moved 1996 to Hamburg to work for the Major „Polygram“ as A&R and Promoter. Moved in 1999 to Berlin to work for the Jazzanova label collectiv Sonarkollektiv, changed into the software business: go_disko* until I started working for iTunes where I was responsible for the complete editorial for the first 4 years, when they launched in Germany, Switzerland & Austria. Than again back to the software industry as Projectmanager, back to the music, to work for google music also as head of editorial, where I was responsible for the editorial at the launch of their streaming service in Germany, Austria and Liechtenstein. Next: Mixradio till the compnay was discounted and the last station was Head of Editorial for KlassikRadio’s upcoming Radio Streaming App. (Still not launched – Sept. 2017) Next to these I’m doing consulting, strategies and workshops for labels and artists and thinking future music strategies.

1 Comment

  1. Emma Heartbeat
    August 28, 2017

    Danke fürs Teilen. Haben ähnliche Erfahrungen gemacht(nicht nur, aber auch). Andere Länder sind da leider viel offener, sowohl musikalisch und auch weniger vorurteilsbelastet gegenüber Frauen im Musikgeschäft. Viel Erfolg mit deinen neuen Projekten!

    Reply

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