The Music Industry is constantly changing and reinventing itself. After many years, countless technological advancements in distribution and publishing, mistakes and solutions, many of the original jobs that drove this business to where it is have changed along the way.
Nowadays, thanks to data’s easy access and speed, big industry players like Record Labels have had the need to rethink their business models around the presence of the Internet. At the same time, just like it is explained in Chapter III of How To Land a Job In the Music Industry by Tomás Uribe some jobs have lost their relevance and others have been created by today’s music consumption and distribution ways.
In Uribe´s work, we can identify the key jobs that are relevant in the current industry, and that will shape the upcoming years. Starting off by one of the most underrated professions in the music business: publisher.
Originally, this role was intended to printing and selling sheet music, but with the advent of tech, it’s all about securing rights of original material and licensing them for recording airplay and inclusion in films and/or TV.
A great case study is that of Colombian super band, Bomba Estereo, managed by M3 Music. The popular international anthem ‘Soy Yo’, featuring a quirky multicultural girl in the video, became popular during the 2016 US Presidential Campaign, since it talked about the immigrant values of America. A little after, all throughout 2017, ‘Soy Yo’ made it to a number of different TV commercials and campaigns including Target, Samsung Galaxy S8, and Ford Fusion.
Stereotheque got in touch with Juan Ortiz de Zaldumbide, co-founder at M3 Music and former employee at Sony Music, to talk about his experience and he emphasized the importance of understanding the region where his clients excel:
“With Bomba Estereo and Mitu, Europe is a great market for their tours while US brands appeal for sync deals. The Colombian electro-tropical band and one of their latest hits “Soy Yo” has achieved massive success by being synched with retail commercials, political campaigns and car ads in many regions around the world.”
“All artists we work with must have a unique positioning for publishing and sync opportunities.”
Getting into publishing can be really rewarding as well as time consuming, but not impossible. Start by getting yourself in front of great musical acts (i.e. SXSW Music Conference Showcases), the more you listen to, the better options you’ll have to choose from. Remember the niche you’re an expert in, so make sure your publishing skills match that of your niche. You’ll be working a lot directly with composers and songwriters, so consider their time and effort while negotiating deals. Consider networking with folks from music publishing companies or PRO’s (performing rights organizations).