Monday, March 18, 2013

SXSW vs. New York Sound City (Part 1)


As a Texan, South By Southwest has a special place in my heart. I have attended SXSW events since my high school days in the late 80s, and have been there as a journalist, a record label minion, "friend of the band," a technology expert, #1 super fan of British export bands, and even as the dreaded  agency guy. Suffice to say my opinion about the event has changed and is less than glowing at this point. So the fact that I have missed this and last year have not upset me too much.

Luckily, this year, during the same week that most of my NYC peers went off to Austin, Liverpool came to NYC in the form of New York Sound City. A conference focused on exposing the world to the music, tech, and businesses of the Liverpool area, this was Sound City's second year in NYC, but my first time.

The day began with panels and roundtables about everything from British hiphop, music technology, how brands deal with bands, and the need (or lack thereof) for record labels in this day and age. Including both UK and NYC experts (including Monie Love, Ninjasonik, and former colleagues of mine), the experience was very genial, very open and was designed very much to open dialogue and knowledge exchanges.

The midday keynote featured Andrew Loog Oldham and Danny Fields giving perspective on the rise of the Rolling Stones and how ALO created the role of superstar rock 'n roll manager. Again, the ambience was very relaxed and allowed for a very open exchange and honest look at the people, times and events that changed the music business and rock 'n roll history as we know it.

After, the keynote and some drinks, NYC was graced by The Anfield Wrap, the premier Liverpool FC focused podcast. As a die-hard LFC supporter, it really was a special opportunity. Sitting in a room with Liverpool locals, who know their football (as well as a bit of music), was entertaining as well as educational.

With the podcast, roundtables, and really special keynote, Liverpool Sound City in NYC was a great day. but the night was even better.

Hear about the music showcase in my next entry...

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