Journal of the Music & Entertainment Industry Educators Association

Volume 8, Number 1 (2008)

Bruce Ronkin, Editor Northeastern University

Published with Support from

Testing “Music 2.0”: Building an International Network of Student-Run Music Companies to Assess New Music Business Models

Guy Morrow

Macquarie University


This article explores the possibility of forming an international network of student-run music companies that are based at educational institutions. Hypothetically speaking, these student-run music companies have the potential to inform the development of new business models that will constitute the newly emerging version of the music business: “Music 2.0” (Leonhard 2008a: 1). The creativity associated with music production occurs in clusters. Songwriters, performers, and producers therefore need to be where the clusters are (Csikszentmihalyi 1996). Universities have often been places that nurture musical creativity as evidenced in part by the numerous student-run record labels that are located at such institutions.

However, what is new is that the rapidly emerging new version of the music business is presenting universities with the opportunity to commercialize this form of creativity in a way that engages with the current phase of decentralization identified by Terrell (2005). Decentralization involves the “planned, or spontaneous, redistribution of an industry, or industry sector’s resources…from a state of relative spatial concentration to a more dispersed condition” (Terrell 2005: 1). Terrell notes specifically that in the U.S. overall there has been a four percent decrease in employees in the record retail sector and that sales in this sector have been relatively flat for the years 2000 and 2003 (Ibid: 5). However he also noted that the

U.S. experienced positive growth in total employees and revenue in eight of the nine music industry sectors that were identified for the purposes of his study. These included the live music sector and the figures for artists’ managers and agents. The data for licensing, royalties, and publishing services also showed an increase in revenues for these years.

There is also more recent quantitative data that suggests the global networks of major record labels are shrinking, and that the publishing, live, and retail sectors are in flux. For the Warner Music Group, music publishing revenue in the third quarter of 2008 increased 7.0% from the prior-year quarter to $168 million, but was down 0.6% on a constant-currency basis. Music publishing revenue was flat in the U.S., but grew 11.1% internationally. Digital revenue from music publishing amounted to $10 million, representing 6.0% of total music publishing revenue. On a constant-currency basis, the decline in mechanical revenue of 14.3% was largely offset by a 7.9% increase in performance revenue, a 6.3% rise in synchronization revenue, and a strong increase in digital revenue. According to the company, mechanical revenue weakness reflected the industry-wide decline in physical record sales.1

Another company that experienced an increase in performance copyright revenue was Broadcast Music, Inc (BMI). BMI announced that it earned more than $901 million in revenue for its 2008 fiscal year, including its subsidiary Landmark Digital Services, LLC. According to the organization, this is the first time any copyright organization has topped the $900 million mark for music performance revenues, and that this represents a 7.2% percent increase from the previous fiscal year. BMI also set a historic high in royalty distributions, and will disperse more than $786 million to the songwriters, composers, and copyright owners it represents. This is an 8% percent increase over the prior fi scal year.2 These figures suggest that student-run music companies could test and embrace new business models that will help artists to further participate in revenue from sectors of the industry that are experiencing positive growth. Therefore the Campus Music International initiative will begin with an involvement in music publishing and artist management services.

Literature Review

The already existing student-run record labels and the new network being proposed in this article need to be more reflective of the industrial paradigm of decentralization that was fi rst identified by Taylor and Terrell (2002). These researchers found that the decentralization of the music industry has combined with local niche specialization; this is replacing the monopolistic models of the twentieth century. Other researchers who have specifically discussed contemporary artist management practices, such as Morrow (2006), Marcone (2003), Leonhard (2008a), Kusek and Leonhard (2005), and Lawrence (2005), have also made similar comments concerning the need to approach the music business with holistic strategies that encompass all five key revenue stream groups: recordings, live perfor-mance, song publishing, merchandise, and sponsorship.

Terrell (2005) and Garofalo (1999) both note that historically, the music industry has experienced periods of decentralization followed by a consolidation phase and that while these periods are difficult to predict, it is possible to determine what type of company would best be able to adapt to these changes when they do occur. Terrell (2005) posits that:

McGovern’s (Malone 2003) proposed model of groups of small autonomous companies can provide numerous adaptive advantages when compared to the large corporate model. These advantages include the ability to broker temporary collaborations within their circle or, when needed, outsource task assignments to fi rms outside their group. It is therefore possible for a group of companies to offer clients a wider range of products and services at competitive price points. (8)

According to Terrell (2005) such a group of small autonomous companies is more resilient, adaptive, and efficient during a decentralization cycle, while during an industry consolidation cycle these company groups can survive, and even thrive, by developing niche markets and staying “under the radar” of the large predatory corporations (Ibid). The international network of student-run record labels being proposed in this article would form such a group of companies.

Case Study

In order to explore the viability of such a network, this article will examine the Six Finger Think Tank’s (SFTT) mission and operation. The SFTT is a private, for-profit organization formed in 2006. Its founding members seek to initiate dialogues and projects within the business and educational realms of the global creative industries. Through the Campus Music International initiative (CMI), the SFTT is establishing long-term relationships with university music business programs. So far, SFTT Chief Executive Officer Jason Free notes that twelve universities have expressed an interest in becoming involved.3 Music business academics involved include the SFTT Global Academic Chair Catherine Moore of New York University, Ava Lawrence of Northeastern University in Boston, Jackie Crispell of Full Sail University in Florida, Julia Jones of Canterbury Christ Church University in the U.K., and Guy Morrow of Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia.

The student-run companies operate within an educational setting, and may be instructional, credit-bearing courses or student organizations. Some may only work with student and faculty artists, others only with external artists, some with both types of artist. This article does not seek to present a definitive outline of the structure and operation of the SFTT’s CMI network; the aim here is to initiate discussion concerning this venture.

The basic idea is that the SFTT’s CMI would provide the operational standards, eligibility criteria, and online infrastructure that would enable the institutions involved to form reciprocal relationships. While each university’s participation needs to be considered on a case-by-case basis, the overall plan is to start with song publishing and to then build holistic music companies that are also involved with the other four key income streams previously mentioned. To start, there will be three “architect” or “HQ” universities that would administer the song catalog in three major territories (likely North America, the United Kingdom and Europe, and Australasia). Other universities will initially be involved through contributing material to the song catalog. More information about the SFTT is provided later, including examples of what types of student-run companies and educational institutions will comprise the CMI network.

The Top Down to Bottom Up Paradigm Shift

Leonhard (2008a) notes that the music and media industries are increasingly becoming user driven (18). This means that the differentiation between producers and consumers is fading. This is having a fundamental impact on the music business in that it is further exacerbating the current decentralization phase. Rather than being marketed to in a “top down” way by record labels and other music companies, university students will become a major part of the “bottom up” paradigm. A culture of participation and dialogue is replacing a consumer culture that featured monologues between music business entities and their customers.

Blogs, photo-sharing, ringtone-mixers, and social networking are just some examples of new technologies that are facilitating this paradigm shift. In terms of music production, this suggests that an international university network is not just a means through which a pre-existing product can be marketed globally; it will enable marketing and producing the mu-sic to become one in the same process. This network therefore has the potential to play a major role in validating and developing the commercial potential of the bottom up paradigm. The fundamental premise underlying the establishment of the network is that it will enable global niche markets to thrive because there will be mutual ownership (both literal and figurative) of the art/production.

Artistic creativity and managerial/business creativity are often two elements of a single process. In many instances, making the art is the management and marketing of the art. The production strategy for an album needs to be one and the same as the business strategy. A commercial musical product is not raw material that is selected and then processed through a system; it is instead located at the end of the industrial process (Frith 1988: 12). For example, selecting a producer who is located in a foreign territory is a strategic alliance that directly impacts the creative product. Furthermore it enables such a foreign industry player to take ownership of the project, and, through that involvement, the artist’s personal management can link through to a new art world that they would not otherwise be able to access. The producer’s and the artist and repertoire (A&R) per-son’s involvement in the creative process from the beginning can initiate a groundswell of positive discourse concerning the project simply because the ego of this practitioner is attached to it.

While traditionally there is no definitive managerial method for artist managers to employ in order to achieve success for their artists in foreign territories, the following three methods have been common:

Successful New York City-based artist manager and attorney George Stein (2005) comments that getting resources and backing have traditionally been the central concerns in relation to the three methods mentioned above.4 He notes that historically speaking, signing directly to a U.S. independent or major label is the most viable option for an Australian act, for example, to enter the territory because, firstly, they own the record, and secondly, there is a longer-term relationship and commitment to the project. These two points mean that this option has traditionally led to the strongest backing. Stein labelled the process of sourcing a deal with a multinational out of a smaller market such as Australia “the sister label option” and notes that it involves the Australian artist/label not being as attractive. The U.S. affiliate is less interested in pushing the foreign artist and it is therefore the weak sister.

Stein also notes that licensing, for example, Australian music to a

U.S. label is fallible because the relationship is not perpetual. The relationship may only last for two to three years, or one year maybe with an option for two. There is less of a connection, and the Australian artist and manager team is not likely to get the resources because it is not their project. He notes that, “They’ll only do it if there is already a buzz, but not if they have to create it.” What is needed therefore is a business model that will circumvent these more traditional modes of releasing music around the world in order to enable a more fluid and free flowing global musical exchange. This recommended model needs to be more reflective of how music is actually exchanged between territories via the internet rather than how musical “product” is handled by record labels and other music companies.

If the hypothetical network of student-run music companies were to embrace a model whereby they could form a mutually benefi cial cross-li-censing agreement and actually share financially in the artistically creative process then it would be like “signing directly” to a label in a foreign territory. The most viable new business model for the university network to employ lies somewhere between “signing directly” and the “flip touring” practices that take place in the independent sector whereby artist managers, producers, and promoters share the knowledge and expertise they have about the market in which they work. Therefore it is cheaper and more efficient for the different parties to tour, have their songs placed in fi lm and television, sell merchandise and recordings, and seek sponsorship deals.

Leonhard (2008a) notes that, “A lot of changes are coming, bringing with them much uncertainty, but also an ocean of opportunities” (19). Student-run music companies are one such opportunity. University music departments are places where the required industrial knowledge is located because of the research of the academics who work there. Many of these academics are also practitioners (or have been practitioners). Although some may feel they do not have time to dedicate to managing an interna-tional network because of teaching loads and research obligations, another way of considering this initiative is that it will generate teaching and research outcomes. The talent and the youth that is required can be found among the student body and the SFTT’s CMI will provide expertise and infrastructure to complement the international research networks that stem out from universities. Large budgets are not often available to a university music department; however Kusek and Leonhard (2005) note that it does not necessarily take a lot of money to launch an artist’s career:

The Faustian pact of musicians and the music business, that “you’ll need millions from a major label” to succeed—this myth has been carefully cultivated so that the fear of God is put into artists who may want to set out on their own…For every musician who makes it to the top of the charts, there are thousands of others less famous who enjoy meaningful careers producing, teaching, gigging, and writing music, on a modest budget. (53)

A business model therefore needs to be presented that will not require much startup capital but that instead draws on the other resources that are available, namely time, talent, and international contacts.

A New Type of Music Company

The student-run music company being proposed here will eventually embrace a 360-degree model. This means it would work towards generating revenue from all five key income stream groups that surround an artist’s work: song publishing, live performance, merchandise, record sales, and sponsorship. It is important to note here that these should be rights service companies, not rights ownership companies. This means that they will be more like artist management companies in that they will not own the artist’s rights and instead let the artists stay independent. In order to address the various conflicts of interest that emerge when one party is involved in generating income from all of the income streams, the student-run companies will act as service providers that enter into short-term license agreements that will enable them to take care of some, or all, of their artists’ income streams on their behalf. Furthermore the financial accounting needs to be transparent.

Student-run companies are therefore presented with a unique oppor-tunity to help lead the way to new and effective business models. University students and researchers should not just reflect on what is going on around them and comment; they should actively play a role in providing a framework for the realization of “next generation” music companies. Kusek and Leonhard (2005) argue that the way forward for the music business involves the development of full-service companies. They posit that notable examples include the Sanctuary Group, management companies like The Firm, and organizations such as the International Music Managers’ Forum (IMMF). They believe that:

The music company of the future will be active in a number of things, including artist management, publishing, touring, merchandising, and recording. The artists’ brands will drive the business, and the win-win-win economics between artist, company, and fan will make the risk more tolerable and the return on investment more predictable. Instead of betting on a traditional 10-to-1 recording model that relies on huge CD sales from just a few artists, the now-evolving business model can test-market artists more efficiently, and work on much lower volumes by spreading the risk across multiple revenue streams and different forms of ‘product’ (Kusek and Leonhard 2005: 136).

In this way student-run companies can build artists’ brands through a constant release of energy into the marketplace through using digital networks to distribute bundles of two or three songs that can be released to test the waters. Rather than investing in the production of a complete album at first, the student-run full service company can continuously release music into the market-place and the songs can be used to support tours and to keep the music fresh and the company nimble (Ibid: 137). A more organic, slower, and rational approach can be used to support multiple artists with less financial risk—“versus the ‘bet the farm’ mentality of the old record business” (Ibid).

The Plan

In order to develop this international network of 360-degree music companies, the plan will start with song publishing and build from there.

The student-run ventures will not necessarily need much startup capital because they could offer songwriters very short-term license deals. For example, an agreement could be offered with a term of one or perhaps two years with no retention period, or a retention period of one year. Because it would be such a short-term deal (that could be reviewed after one or two years based on the desired outcomes set forth in the initial contract), only a small monetary advance would be required to help the artists record their songs. The songwriter and the student-run music company/univer-sity would earn real income as soon as the songs were placed in the right channels. Some student-run companies might choose to work with artists signed to an external commercial company in which case the revenues would be split accordingly.

Traditionally song publishers have paid songwriters advances in order to justify participating in the income generated by the exploitation of their copyrights for a term of anywhere between two and twenty years, and often with a retention period of another length of time covering the songs that were written during the initial term (once again, anywhere between two and twenty years). Other publishers have commissioned songwriters to write songs, thus enabling a complete assignment of the copyright to the publisher. However, the student-run company will work on a shorter time frame. This will allow it to navigate around any conflicts of interest that may emerge because the company is involved in all of the artists’ income streams (i.e., the songwriter could just “walk” after one year) and so that the network can be built by often cash-strapped university music departments.

This deal structure would potentially expose the student-run company to “poaching.” Other publishers might step in and leverage the work the student company has accomplished in one year by offering a larger advance to a songwriter. This would be limited because other song publishers may not have the international network that the student company theoretically would, and international exposure is something that artists and writers attracted to this type of affi liation would typically value. Furthermore, the student company will focus on artist development and work in the best interests of the artists. In other words, if the artists were offered better opportunities and deals then they should be allowed to take them. The university will not lose in this situation because the exercise will have generated teaching, learning, and research outcomes anyway.

Why Start With Song Publishing?

Song publishing gives students valuable experience in the B2B (business-to-business) arena. The growing significance of B2B revenue in the music industry is the result of end users’ ability to obtain free digital music and to have concert ticket prices subsidized by sponsors. In its 2006 report on the international record business, the International Federation of the Phonographic Industry (IFPI) added a trade revenues category alongside retail revenues in its country-by-country summaries, demonstrating trends in the B2B sector.5 Opportunities abound for revenue generation from music copyrights, but many no longer involve a retail (B2C) sale or transaction with an individual consumer. Licensing revenue, for example, is all B2B.

Another reason for these student-run ventures to start building an international song publishing network before becoming involved with the other income streams is that publishing income is set to be an even more crucial income stream in the newly emerging version of the business. Kusek and Leonhard (2005) argue that traditionally speaking, due to the complexity of a record deal and the usually lopsided terms contained therein, publishing income tends to be a more valuable and reliable revenue stream than recording income—provided that the recording artist is also the songwriter. They note that:

It just takes longer to build a good catalogue of songs, and to get those songs into the right channels so that they are being used. Indeed, when the valuation was set for the recent acquisition of Warner Music Group, the publishing company was valued at $2 billion, compared with the $1.5 billion given for the recorded music operation (Ibid: 25).

In terms of the future of the music business, it can be argued that the internet is essentially a giant publishing apparatus. “Everything is about disseminating data (also know as ‘information’ or ‘content’), getting heard or being viewed by people, and reaching out to others” (Ibid). Therefore publishers (and songwriters) stand to benefit as technological advances enable data (songs) to be disseminated as widely as possible and a research-driven and student-run publishing company could help to figure out how to monetize this. Kusek and Leonhard note that:

Once we can broaden our views on how the remuneration will be derived and start to embrace new models, the resulting revenues will be larger than ever before. One can see traces of this when looking at the flourishing ring-tone business, music for video games, and synchronization income that stems from digital media products (Ibid).

Music is set to become even more ubiquitous. Leonhard (2008a) notes that a wide range of music will become part of everything that used to be “images only”—from rich media advertising, to interactive slide-shows, to car software, to MMS and digital cameras, to advertising in magazines. He notes that the audiovisual use of music will increase, and the licensing revenues will expand along with it (Leonhard 2008a: 15).

In order to realize the potential of song publishing in a digital environment, Kusek and Leonhard (2005) note that copyright laws need to be amended to do what they were originally intended to do, that is, “protect authorship for a limited period of time so that an invention or work could be released to the public for the benefit of all” (25). They believe that the importance of mechanical reproduction licenses will decrease in favor of “access licenses” that allow the public to freely use any song under a new blanket license arrangement (Ibid: 26). Song publishing is an important aspect of the music business for student-run music companies to be involved in because once the mechanisms of performance royalty collection are adapted to address the new modes of song usage (such as music “renting”), performance royalty collection and publishing will take the lead as the primary source of compensation for composers and performing artists. New technologies have a major role to play in this:

Technologies such as the ones pioneered by Mediaguide, YesNet-works, and Yacast already allow us to monitor actual performance on broadcast networks with 99-percent accuracy, rather than relying on the sample-based accounting that has been commonplace until now (Ibid).

Under the existing performance royalty collection procedure, only those who can afford it are able to individually audit performance logs, thus giving them a better chance of collecting royalties. Therefore the rich artists get richer and the smaller acts sometimes miss out. In the emerging paradigm, publishing will become inseparable from distribution and therefore the tasks that record companies used to perform will be morphed into the publishing business or into “next generation” music businesses (Ibid).

Setting up the Company

While there are clearly opportunities here for teaching and research to be combined with practice, the actual process of setting up a revenue-collecting student-run music company within a university music department is challenging. Many such student-run entities already exist, and the rules and policies governing structure and operation vary from institution to institution. At Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia there are three options currently being explored.

1) Setting up a company that would be a separate entity from

the university that would be managed by the music depart

ment, 2) Using the existing infrastructure of the university’s business incubator, Access MQ, and 3) Working directly from the university’s music department.

The first two options would involve working with the university’s business incubator, Access MQ Pty Ltd., a separate entity from the university. This company is owned by the university and its mission is to commercialize the intellectual property that the university produces and owns.

The first option therefore is to get Access MQ to set up another separate company on behalf of the music department (Department of Contemporary Music Studies) that it would administer. After paying the initial fee required to set up the company, Access MQ would then do the bookkeeping and other business management for a 17.5% commission on all income. They have lawyers who charge approximately Australian $300 (US$186.38 in October 2008) an hour who could advise on the structure of the deals. The remaining income would be paid to the songwriters and the students who work for the company (at some institutions, students would not be considered employees or eligible for wages) and then a percentage of the income could be retained by the company on behalf of the music department to be reinvested into various projects.

The second option is for the venture to be set up as part of Access MQ (not as a separate entity). This way a company setup fee could be avoided and Access MQ would simply manage a separate account on behalf of the music department. While these first two options initially appeared to be worthwhile, the first major blockage was that Access MQ changed its mission and operation statement in 2007 and stated that it only wanted to become involved with projects that had an initial annual turnover of Australian $100,000 (US$ 62,125). If this policy is not overturned, the third option (running the project directly from the music department) is the only viable option.

The Macquarie University music department is currently involved in booking musicians to perform at the university’s graduation ceremonies and other campus events. The department has set up an account to process income received from booking these performances. An internal journal transfer is used for receiving the performance fees. Once the money is with the music department, the musicians invoice the university music department to receive payment. The music department retains a ten percent commission as the booking agent. This is because in the state of New South Wales booking agents can commission ten percent of an artist’s live performance income without having a written agreement. If agents want to commission more than this they need to have a written agreement.

In the 2007–2008 financial year it was projected that the department would turn over approximately AUS$12,500 on behalf of the musicians involved; the department would commission ten percent of this income. Additional income for the department is also generated by the fact that when a full-time staff member performs at one of the events, the performance fee is left in the account because it is considered a conflict of interest for a full-time employee to invoice the university.

In this third option, therefore, the music department’s involvement in booking internal live performances expands into booking external live performances and into song publishing for the reasons outlined above. However, this option generates various financial and legal issues. Firstly, if the music department generates external income (rather than the internal journal transfers that it has earned to date), this income is taxable and it is unclear at this stage whether the department and faculty administrators would be willing to deal with this issue. The second issue is whether the music department can form song-publishing agreements with songwriters, and cross-licensing agreements with other university music departments. An issue that arises at Macquarie University is that the institution has an overarching intellectual property policy which states that anything staff and students create (essays, inventions, journal articles, and books, as well as songs) is owned by the institution.

This means that the music department (as part of the university) would theoretically not have to form an agreement with a student artist/ songwriter because it would be able to control the intellectual property anyway. This is likely to upset and discourage student songwriters. While all three of the company setup options outlined above are faced with this issue, it is likely to be moot because the university has (to date) never acted on the fact that it owns the intellectual property (because arguably to date it has not been worth very much money).

Significance to the Field of Popular Music Studies

Combining music business teaching, research, and practice would lead to valuable contributions to the field of popular music studies. Popular music studies emerged as a distinct discipline in the 1980s. A central aspect of this field (and one that differentiates it from musicology) is the business of popular music. Its parent disciplines are cultural studies, media studies, and sociology. According to Philip Hayward (2008) popular music studies is distinct from musicology, whose focus on Western classical music is reflected in the cultural values that pervade its performance practice and also in the methodology and analytical tools developed to study it. A different type of inquiry was needed to analyze and research this field of study, and this was defined in the early 1990s through a small but influential body of seminal works including Frith’s (1988) Music for Pleasure: Essays in the Sociology of Pop, Middleton’s (1990) Studying Popular Music, Nattiez’s (1990) Music and Discourse: Towards a Semiology of Music, and Moore’s (1993) Rock: The Primary Text. These works establish that a central aspect of popular music studies is the business of popular music. Hayward (2008) states that investigations into how the mass media and other industrially mediated modes (i.e., the recording industry, commercial distribution networks, markets, copyright, management, publicity, and so on) influence and define popular music and its culture are central to popular music studies.

This distinction also becomes the fundamental point of departure between popular music studies and ethnomusicology. According to Denis Crowdy (2008), although the two share common areas of inquiry and approach, it is the emphasis that popular music studies places on the mass media and industrial practices that most clearly set them apart. The academic problem that this project outlining student-run “Music 2.0” companies addresses is that while popular music studies have placed an emphasis on industrial practices, these studies have primarily focused on the recording business. These studies are now dated because record companies are no longer as dominant as they once were. A different approach is now needed to analyze and research this field and the proposed setup of a student-run artist management or “music company” presented here will provide a more holistic framework for the analysis of this fundamental aspect of popular music studies.

Six Finger Think Tank

As noted above, the Six Finger Think Tank (SFTT) will provide operational standards, eligibility criteria, and online infrastructure that will enable the institutions involved to form reciprocal relationships. The SFTT will be the entity that ensures continuity (students, by definition, graduate and leave their educational institutions), standards of quality and professional work, an international repository of contract templates, and consistency to reassure clients of the credibility of the network.

The SFTT will have an advisory relationship with the international network of student-run music companies. The following people are among the many industry professionals who have contributed to the think tank: Ray Cooper6, Steve Fellows7, Bruce Findlay8, James Doheny9, John Glover10, Mike Gormley11, Mark Hodkinson12, Mike Howlett13, Peter Jenner14, Jennifer Knoepfle15, Dennis McNally16, Tony Michaelides17, Mick Middles18, Thomas Nash19, Kavi Ohri20, Jolene Pellant21, Pete Reeves22, Phil Saxe23, Howard Sharrock24, Billy Sloan25, Neil Storey26, Tony Tobias27, and Jon Webster28. The SFTT will set up the IT infrastructure to enable links to be made internationally, and each university will have a module on its server. The only way the SFTT could earn revenue from the international network of student-run song publishing ventures is if it contributed songs that were part of the Six Finger Songs catalog to the catalog being worked by the student companies. According to Free, the “architect” universities would be the entities that initially earn revenue. The SFTT also manages research projects and produces learning materials such as interactive online learning modules that stream MP3 recordings of interviews with the aforementioned industry professionals. The SFTT is also creating an invitation only online social/research community for students, faculty, and music industry executives around the world. It will also start producing a refereed online academic journal.

The SFTT’s Campus Music International initiative has the potential to affect change in the music business for the benefit of artists. The SFTT could become involved in testing the “Music Like Water” hypothesis proposed by Kusek and Leonhard (2005). Kusek and Leonhard (2008a) believe that the record and song publishing industries’ overall need is to embrace a model that will enable music to be accessible like tap water. This “Music Like Water” analogy revolves around the notion that there will be a paradigm shift from treating recorded music like a product (i.e., expensive bottled water) to enabling music to function like a service or “utility;” like water from a tap. This means that recorded music would feel like it is free but it actually would not be, and therefore the music content owners could compete with the massive levels of piracy that online file-sharing has enabled. Leonhard notes that this would lead to much needed price flexibility:

Today’s music pricing schemes will be completely eroded by digital music services (legal and, mostly, otherwise) and by stiff competition from other entertainment products. A “liquid” pricing system will emerge, involving subscriptions, bundles of various content types, multi-channel/multi-access charges, and countless added-value services. CD prices will end up at around €5–7 per unit. But most important, the overall music consumption and use will steadily increase, and—if the industry can manage the transition to a service-based model—can eventually bring in €50–90 per person per year, with 75% of the population in the leading markets as active consumers— the pie will be three times as large. (15)

He therefore envisions that access to music will replace ownership and that consumers will have access to “their” music anytime, anywhere— the physical possession of it will become more of a disadvantage. Music will feel (and act) like tap water (Ibid).

The hypothetical student-run music companies and the academic re-search networks surrounding them need to become involved in monetizing the existing behavior of music consumers. The basic idea underlying the “Music Like Water” model is that users would pay a low flat fee to an entity such as an ISP or digital music retailer in order to access a large pool of music. These flat fees would amount to more money than the record industry has ever turned over. Software could be used (featuring watermarking and fingerprinting) that enables the content owners to be paid on a usage basis rather than per copy. (It is becoming increasingly diffi cult to distinguish what constitutes a “copy” anyway.) This flat fee-based system could precisely track what music is actually used and could distribute exact royalties accordingly. This would enable online bloggers and others to use music like radio stations use music. That is, all that would be required is a collective voluntary blanket license.

Student-run music companies based at universities are in a unique position to facilitate such a paradigm shift because they would not be encumbered by a back catalog and existing agreements with artists. Such companies could form agreements with artists that empower them to manage all of the artist’s income streams, while they could also negotiate agreements with third parties like a management company would. One of the roles of the SFTT’s CMI is to help form partnerships between the universities and various business entities. Leonhard29 (2008b) notes that the leading music blogs will become what used to be called “record labels” as so called “BlogJs” sign new artists to agency-type agreements. It is also envisioned that telecommunications companies will enter the music business as they move towards packaging content and services into their pipes, cables, and wireless networks:

Within 18–24 months, a major telecom (Vodafone? Telefonica? NTT?) will announce that they are entering the music business. They will start from scratch, unencumbered with back-catalogue, contracts and Music1.0 people and concerns, working with new artists and with those well-known brand name acts that have fi nally left their labels for good, riffing off the various Music2.0 blueprints…This will be fueled by the fact many incumbent record labels…have succeeded in being universally hated by the music fans, i.e., the users, their artists, the general public, and—you guessed it—the telecom execs, themselves.30

The argument here is that many telecommunications companies and startup music-related websites have been unable to negotiate licenses from major record labels. Companies that have successfully negotiated with the major labels (such as Spiralfrog, Imeem, and have had to pay large advances, agree to unrealistic use rates, and adhere to bizarre restrictions.31 The proposed international network of student-run music companies is therefore a potential organization through which telecommunications companies could negotiate agreements with new artists, thus bypassing major labels and moving the music business overall towards a “Music Like Water” model.

Leonhard (2008a) notes that the power in the music business is moving to the edges of the network as part of the decentralization phase and an international collection of student-run music companies could be poised in a meaningful position that will enable them to help artists. Podcasting, blogging, and online networking are activities largely happening on the edges of the network. Thus, they are still mostly unregulated, and represent a new kind of bottom-up phenomenon.

Network centers can be equated with the huge content hubs such as MTV/VH1, Clear Channel, Infi nity, the BBC, etc., or of course the major record labels and large retailers, as well as iTunes and maybe even Rhapsody and MSN. Network “edge-dwellers” are companies like, MySpace Music, XM, Sirius (soon to move into the center?), KPFA, Hearts of Space Radio, and many others (Leonhard 2008a: 53).

As evidenced by recent developments at YouTube, Flickr, MySpace, Delicious, Pandora,, LinkedIn, and many of the latest so-called Web 2.0 ventures, many consumers of digital media are no longer just receivers. They are also senders or re-senders of content (Ibid: 89). Rather than employing a record industry business model which would involve having contracts with creators who then produce products that are sold to consumers, the proposed international network of student run music companies needs to use an online and engaging methodology whereby the context is the content, and the many university students who are involved could be allowed to become usators (Ibid: 89).

Usators is a portmanteau that Leonhard (2008a) coined to describe the concept of “users becoming creators, users who are not just receivers but also senders, of one-way monologues becoming conversations… What’s more, the context they are creating is itself becoming content” (Ibid). Because student-run music companies could sign and work with new artists who are producing new content, they are in a unique position at the edge of the music business network that theoretically makes them attractive to other business entities such as telecommunications compa-nies—entities that are much larger and more powerful than major record companies.

Critical Perspectives

When interviewed, Jason Free (2008), Ava Lawrence (2008), and Keith Welsh (2008) were critical of the possible emergence of a “Music Like Water” paradigm. Free noted that if recorded music were to operate in a similar way to utilities such as water and electricity, it would devalue artists’ work. He is therefore an advocate of “bottled water.” Similarly, while Lawrence notes that there is a precedent for a blanket license because there was a similar one for Digital Audio Tape (DAT), she has concerns over whether the money would actually be distributed fairly to artists. She added that if artists were to sign directly to a telecommunications company (for example) they would be placed in a risky situation. However, the premise of Leonhard’s (2008a) argument is that there is already an effective public domain through the extensive civil disobedience that P2P file sharing has enabled. Through widespread, though currently illegal, practices music is already almost as accessible as tap water in the Western world. Furthermore, like fresh water and electricity, the creative arts are fundamentally important to most people’s lives.

Welsh agrees that instead of buying music by the track (from iTunes and others), there is a need to monetize file sharing utilizing a “Music Like Water” (MLW) model which gives the perception that music is free. However he is unsure who would pay for the voluntary blanket license and who would pay for the massive investment in technology that would be needed. He notes that various current models are not working in the interests of the songwriters. For example, in Australia in 2008, Nokia was selling a new mobile phone for approximately AUS$800 (US$497). This high price point is justified because the phone and the associated agreement—a subscription service called “Comes With Music”—enables consumers to download as much music as they want in a year. While the songwriters deserve to be compensated for the use of their work, Welsh claims that, although Nokia pays access fees to the record companies, the pool of money generated will amount to a tiny trickle of income for the songwriters and publishers.

Another reason why Free (2008) is skeptical that the MLW model will become economically viable for songwriters is that he envisions, “Artists are not going to have $500 an hour to employ lawyers to pound out agreements that will look after their interests.” He notes that while at this stage some major record labels and music publishing companies (such as his company Six Finger Songs) are still in a position to be able to negotiate with the bigger entities that are becoming more closely involved in the music business, the financial positions of the big record companies and music publishing companies are weakening. Similarly, Lawrence believes that it would be risky for artists to sign to telecommunications companies because they only have limited distribution outlets and the telcos may not have the knowledge and expertise required to build an artist’s career.

The Role of Government

The researchers surrounding the student-run companies could help various governments form policies concerning the MLW model that would help ensure songwriters and artists are remunerated fairly. Leon-hard (2008a) notes that, “Unless the rights holders and the music services (i.e., retailers) can agree on a flat-fee music rate that also makes sense to the user, soon, and start to provide a level of service that actually works for anyone without an engineering degree, it looks like the government and other public policy organizations will need to step in and catalyze (or… force?) a deal” (79). He notes that this is likely to start in Europe because many Europeans already pay approximately AUS$150 per year to have the right to use their TVs and radios. It would make more sense to them than to people in the United States who may recoil at the notion of this type of government interference:

‘Much of Western Europe relies on a single currency, the euro. All of Europe has one cell phone standard. Both were government initiatives.’ This relates nicely to the debate on Flat Fee Music and Compulsory Licensing: If and when this will happen, the governments must be involved, without a doubt—the Apple Fairplay DRM story aptly illustrates this. Bottom line: No, Steve (or Bill), you can’t own this. Sorry (Leonhard 2008: 87).

The argument in this article is not that government should run, or even regulate, a flat fee/MLW system; nor should they impose a tax or levy. However, the power imbalance between major telecommunications companies (for example) and artists/songwriters needs to be addressed through legislation that is informed by research. One major challenge for a hypothetical network of student-run music companies is that while doing the research that is required some of the students and researchers may breach current copyright laws. Thus the universities involved run the risk of litigation from copyright owners. As noted above, one of the resources that the SFTT’s CMI would provide is an international repository of contract templates.


According to Macquarie University undergraduate student Rowan Brand (2008), it is commonplace for young artists (both performers and songwriters) such as himself to struggle to initiate their careers. While there are five income stream groups from which artists can generate a living, for them to get started they often require a modest investment of capital. One of the main obstacles for young artists is access to this economic capital.

Arguably the most important initial asset of young artists is the intellectual property embodied in their recorded works and compositions. Such an asset can be used to unlock all five key income stream groups. In terms of song publishing the student/artists’ recordings enable the proliferation of their songs. The student-run music company will help artists secure recording agreements thus generating mechanical royalties. The company could capitalize on synchronization opportunities through becoming involved in the networks of the film and media departments located at its university. In terms of live performance, recordings will be used as demo submissions in order to secure bookings—and those same recordings can be sold at these performances to generate income. This dissemination of recorded music also helps artists to build awareness—and a fan base— which attracts potential sponsors and encourages merchandise sales.

The sale of recordings, however, is such a small income stream (often less than AUS$1,000 annually—US$621.25) that students like Brand are often happy for MP3 versions to be distributed for free over the inter-net.32 The MLW paradigm makes sense to them because the more attention they can get from distributing recordings, the more likely they will increase other income-generating activities including live performances, merchandising, and sponsorship. This approach also enhances the likelihood that the student-run company will generate worthwhile revenue. (The company based at Macquarie University will initially aim to generate AUS$50,000 per year—US$31,062.)

Brand proposes that the student-run company would provide artists with capital to record their music. Doing so will put the artists on the path towards unlocking the five income stream groups. These funds would be loaned to artists thus employing the model of a microenterprise loaning scheme. 360-degree service agreements would then be formed with the artists requiring them to repay the loans so that the capital could be used again by other artists. Multiple loans, or advances, could be issued in each specified time period. The agreements would also assign the management of the songwriters’ intellectual property to the company—though they would be “rights service” or license agreements not “rights ownership” agreements for the reasons discussed above. This will enable the development of a song catalog that can be cross-licensed to student-run companies in other territories. While the initial international link would concern song-publishing, other links would soon form: first, record production, followed by the other income streams.

The student-run company must decide which artists to support. This process should be led by students in music business programs who have studied the business and artistic facets of the industry. The Department of Contemporary Music Studies at Macquarie University has produced a student compilation CD in this way since 2004. The artists, selected on merit, are required to submit a proposal outlining how a recording project would enhance their careers. Artists must outline in their plans how they intend to recoup their advances, thus enabling the company to invest in other artists. This business model embraces the fact that in the Music 2.0 paradigm, music is a verb—not a noun.


As used in an August 14, 2006 internal SFTT planning document about the set-up of CMI

Music Company – includes:

  • record label

  • music publishing company

  • radio station (if the focus is music)

  • performing venue (on school property)

  • concert promoter (on or off school property)

  • newspaper or magazine (online or printed)

  • TV station (if the focus is music)

  • music products (instruments, amplifi ers, software).


  • affiliated with an educational institution

  • majority of the work and operating ideas come from students

  • copyrights are demonstrably owned or licensed by the institution

  • institution provides infrastructure for the operation of the company

Note: Music companies run by students outside of school jurisdiction are not eligible.

School – includes:

  • college

  • university

  • technical school

  • high school

Note: The overseeing academic departments and programs within schools may include music industry/management, mass communications, music technology/engineering, music producing, journalism, business, and student activities.



71ec0. Accessed August 29, 2008. 2 Accessed August 29, 2008. 3 All comments attributed to Jason Free, Ava Lawrence, Philip Hayward,

Keith Welsh, Rowan Brand and Denis Crowdy are taken from personal correspondence conducted by the author in May, 2008. All comments attributed to George Stein are taken from personal correspondence conducted by the author in June, 2005.

4 Stein is most well known as the late Jeff Buckley’s manager. He currently manages Kristin Diable, is a practicing attorney, and teaches music business courses at New York University.

5 Keith Jopling, ed., 2006 Global Recording Industry in Numbers (London: IFPI, 2006).

6 Ray Cooper joined Island Records in 1983 as Director of Marketing where, in tandem with Ashley Newton, he established the 4th & Broadway label. The pair left in 1987 to form Circa, a new label in partnership with Virgin Records UK, which became home to a number of groundbreaking acts such as Massive Attack and Neneh Cherry. Ray then moved into the Virgin Group of labels overseeing Ten, Pointblank, and Realworld as well as founding Hut, which signed The Verve, Gomez, and Placebo. He became Managing Director of Virgin in 1994 before being appointed Co-President of Virgin Records America in 1997. In 2002, he began a new multimedia management venture based out of Los Angeles, Zama Media Management, that consults on a number of projects in music and related areas. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

7 Steve Fellows has seen life in the music business from a variety of perspectives: as a singer, guitarist, and songwriter in the Comsat Angels; then from behind the counter as a retailer at Record Collector in Sheffield, England, and then as Manager of Mercury Music Prize winners, Gomez—“it all blew up very quickly, I’d never been a manager before, they’d never been a pro band. None of us really knew what we were doing and we all had to learn very fast to cope with the situation we found ourselves in.” http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

8 Bruce Findlay teamed up with his brother and opened their own record shop in Falkirk in Scotland in 1967. By the early 70s this had grown into Scotland’s best known record store chain They spread through Central Scotland specializing in American imports and underground rock and were famous for their distinctive carrier bags “I found it at Bruce’s.” From there he went on to manage Simple Minds from 1978 to 1990.With his time completely taken up with the band, he resigned from the record store chain and put his Zoom record label into “cold storage.” In 1985, working closely with Bill Graham he was able to confirm Simple Minds as the first U.K. act to commit to playing Live Aid in Philadelphia. Since then he has become more involved in consultancy work and education in the music business and regularly lectures at colleges and universities throughout the

U.K. He chaired the first ever managers meeting at the inaugural In the City in Manchester out of where the MMF (Music Managers’ Forum) was formed. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

9 James Doheny studied composition and production at the Royal Academy of Music where he established a continuing profile as a commentator on music and related musicological/intellectual property matters. Became a journalist for Wired magazine and the BBC before forming Celebration PR (1996 to present) specifically to promote the music of the most innovative composers and performers. Over the years has worked with such pioneering musicians as Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, King Crimson/Robert Fripp, The Amphex Twin, Philip Glass, Wynton Marsalis, Sigur Ros, etc. With similarly diverse and creative work for companies including: EMI, Sony-BMG, Universal Music, Warner Music, Virgin, The South Bank Centre (London), The Lincoln Center (New York), The Sonar Festival (Barcelona), BBC, etc. James was invited to write a book on Radiohead which would combine a complete and definitive history of the band and a musicological overview of their its recorded output which is entitled Karma Police: The Story behind every Radiohead Song. He currently divides his time between PR consultancy, Production/ A&R work for a number of record labels, and the management and development of several up-and-coming artists. James is also a member of the board of directors of Manchester’s Futuresonic Festival. Accessed May 28, 2008.

10 John Glover set up Blueprint Management in 1974 with a company focus to work with singer-songwriters looking after the recording, publishing, promotion, marketing, touring, merchandising, and sponsorship affects of all his artist’s careers. John’s vast experience started with the management of Joe Cocker, Free, Mott the Hoople, and Spencer Davis Group. Over thirty-plus years his management company has established long term relationships with clients such as Go West, Beverley Craven, Tony Hadley, Alison Limerick, etc. John was a founding member and former Chairman of the MMF (The Music Managers Forum) together with being a founding board member of AURA, the Association of United Recording Artists. John Glover remains one of the music industry’s most respected managers. Accessed May 28, 2008.

11 Over the years Mike Gormley has managed The Bangles, Oingo Boingo, Danny Elfman, Concrete Blonde, Angelique Kidjo, Lowen & Navarro, and many others. He has been Vice President and Assistant to the Chairman of A&M Records. Prior to that Gormley was partners with Miles Copeland in L.A. Personal Direction where he became President. Both were affectionately referred to as L.A.P.D. He has now teamed up with fellow industry veteran and SFTT member Jolene Pellant to form a new management/marketing/music publishing company called Yes, Dear Entertainment. http://www. Accessed May 28, 2008.

12 Mark Hodkinson is a musician, author, journalist, and founder of Pomona, the U.K.’s largest specialist regional press company. With a day job as a journalist, Mark played guitar in bands for many years, supporting groups such as Pulp, Stone Roses, and The Wedding Present. Swapping guitar for a word processor, Mark turned freelance and has written for the Times in London for many years; he has also written a number of books on music and sport and set up Pomona in 1993. Since then, the company has represented a cross range of artists from David Bowie, Madonna, and Bruce Springsteen, to hundreds of up-and-coming bands. Pomona has recently branched into publishing—with a diverse series of titles including volumes by the acclaimed author Hunter Davies. Accessed May 28, 2008.

13 A Grammy Award winning producer, Mike Howlett was born in Fiji and educated in Australia and Singapore before joining esoteric space-funk combo Gong (the second act to sign to Virgin Records) at age twenty-three. Four years later he put together his own band, Strontium 90 with three fellow musicians. Four became three and the trio were…The Police. In the 80s Mike started producing records regularly and scored with a string of top-ten hits: Martha and the Muffins’ Echo Beach, OMD’s Enola Gay and Souvenir, Flock of Seagulls’ Wishing, I Ran, and DNA (his 1982 Grammy Award), as well as producing other international top-sellers by The Alarm, Berlin, Gang Of Four, and Joan Armatrading. During the mid-80s, Mike became a founding member of MPG, The Music Producers Guild, for whom he now serves as Chairman. He founded his own (short-lived) label—Mauve—in the early 90s before, once again working with Gong—completing three world tours before the end of the decade, producing a new studio album in 2000, and headlining the Avalon Stage at Glastonbury the same year. Since 2002, and while still actively involved as a producer and member of Gong, Mike has taught and lectured audio technology in Wales (University of Glamorgan) and at Thames Valley University in London. http:// Accessed May 28, 2008.

14 After gaining a First Class Honours Degree in Economics at Cambridge University, Peter Jenner became a Lecturer at the London School of Economics at the tender age of twenty-one. His career in academia lasted for four years after which he left to devote his attention to managing an up-and-coming modern music group that had caught his attention. The band’s name was The Pink Floyd. After their time with the Floyd was over, Peter and his business partner Andrew King then put on a series of free concerts in London’s Hyde Park which culminated with The Rolling Stones in 1969. Now, after more than forty years in the music business, the list of clients he has worked with reads like a Who’s Who of musical successes. He has managed T Rex (fronted by Marc Bolan), Ian Dury, Roy Harper, The Clash, Robyn Hitchcock, Eddi Reader, Baaba Maal and others. Peter continues to manage the career of Billy Bragg and 7 Seconds of Love and was recently the co-author of the well received Music Tank report Beyond the Soundbytes. He is also Chairman of the IMMF, a director of the U.K. MMF (Music Managers’ Forum), and has many other projects on the go. http://www.sixfingerthinktank.

com/. Accessed May 28, 2008.

15 Since joining ASCAP in 1999, Jennifer Knoepfle has been responsible for various artist development programs including the production of the ASCAP Presents CD samplers: a series that features emerging new talent that is circulated to key music industry decision makers. These CD compilations act as an integral part of the launch pad for many artists and songwriters and have recently featured The Killers, Bloc Party, Kaiser Chiefs, Dungen, Be Your Own Pet, and The Editors. In addition, Jennifer coordinates local and regional showcases on the West Coast for up-and-coming bands and her role has further expanded to include the planning of ASCAP’s participation at national industry events such as South by Southwest, CMJ, and Bumbershoot as well as several regional outreach programs. Jennifer has also been instrumental in forging ASCAP’s relationships with a number of online and technology companies, most notably with whom she is currently developing a variety of strategic partnerships. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

16 Dennis McNally received his Ph.D. in American History from the University of Massachusetts in 1977 for his biography of Jack Kerouac. Random House published this definitive study in 1979 under the title Desolate Angel: Jack Kerouac, the Beat Generation, and America. A regular contributor to the San Francisco Chronicle, he became archivist for Bill Graham Presents in 1983 where he established the BGP Archives. Having been selected as the Grateful Dead’s authorized biographer in 1980, he became the band’s publicist in 1984. He published A Long Strange Trip/The Inside History of the Grateful Dead in 2002; it was a New York Times best seller. He continues to be a music publicist, and represents Bob Weir and RatDog as well as other clients. Accessed May 28, 2008.

17 With an irrefutable reputation that has been achieved over thirty-plus years working with a stellar cast of clients, it is not for nothing that U2’s manager, Paul McGuinness has said of Tony Michaelides, “Tony has long been one of the U.K.’s foremost record promoters and undoubtedly one of the best that U2 have had the pleasure of working with.” Tony is recognized and respected by not just the artists he has worked with but also by his peers for the wealth of experience he has gained through a career that has seen him work within Transatlantic and Island to founding and running his own TMP promotions company—for over 20 years, one of the most successful in Britain. In 1997, he also took on the roll of publicist for David Bowie’s Earthling UK tour—being responsible for all promotional activities as well as personal David Bowie press, radio, and television interviews—and, besides producing and presenting his own award-winning radio program in Britain for twelve years, he has chaired industry panels and mentoring sessions worldwide. Accessed May 28, 2008.

18 Mick Middles has spent over two decades as a key contributor—and especially during the late-70s punk era in Manchester—for such seminal U.K. music publications as The Face, Sounds, ZigZag, and Jamming as well as regularly contributing to National Newspapers: The Mail on Sunday, Independent, the Guardian, Daily Telegraph, Daily Express, and the Independent on Sunday. He has written thirteen books—mainly on the subject of Manchester-based music that include biographies on Joy Division/New Order, The Smiths, Simply Red, and Mark E. Smith of The Fall—and currently writes for Record Collector while also working as a sub-editor for Guardian Newspapers in the U.K. Accessed May 28, 2008.

19 The Chairman and CEO of Xalles Limited, Thomas Nash is an experienced project manager for business strategy and systems implementation projects, a change leader, business strategist, and problem solver. He is also an author, trainer, international public speaker and business advisor. Mr. Nash has been directly involved in many start up ventures, and sits on the Board of Directors of six companies spanning Asia, North America, and Europe. Mr. Nash and his company are also involved in many charitable projects, including the Xalles Music Project. Using his firm’s business management and international marketing expertise, Xalles helps international unsigned music artists gain recognition for their creative talents. http:// Accessed May 28, 2008.

20 Kavi Ohri originally worked in radio at Los Angeles-based KCRW before moving to Geffen. From there he progressed to Director of A&R at Virgin Records based first in Los Angeles, and later in New York City. Artists under his watch included Massive Attack, Daft Punk, Gomez as well as a few acts on sister label Astralwerks: The Chemical Brothers, Fatboy Slim, Basement Jaxx, etc. He also oversaw the commissioning of club/dance remixes for all artists on the label, scoring several number-one Club Mixes on the Billboard charts, and two Grammy nominations for the company. Kavi currently works at Decon, Inc, a New York-based production company and creative agency where he is involved in a variety of projects ranging from music video production, DVD creation and production, to music supervision (video games). He also oversees several marketing initiatives for client companies. In his spare time, he co-runs Los Angeles-based club promotions company Bossa:Nova— responsible for bringing some of the world’s top DJs to Los Angeles, and also one of the longest running weekly club nights in L.A. He also continues his A&R work, commissioning remixes for artist and label clients, producing branded compilations, and as creative consultant to several New York retail establishments. http://www. Accessed May 28, 2008.

21 Jolene Pellant originally came from the world of video editing to become Director of Marketing and Promotions at two of Los Angeles’ premiere radio stations. Jolene eventually landed herself the position of Director of Marketing and Promotions at Clear Channel Enter-tainment/SFX/Avalon Attractions. In 2004, she was promoted to Vice President of National Marketing, overseeing national marketing and working on tour marketing for such artists as Aerosmith, Lenny Kravitz, Fiona Apple, Journey, Def Leppard, Damien Rice, Chicago, Backstreet Boys, Stevie Nicks, Il Divo, and many others. The company was eventually renamed Live Nation. She left Live Nation and has now teamed up with fellow SFTT member Mike Gormley combining their vast experience to form an exciting new management/marketing/music publishing company, Yes, Dear Entertainment. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

22 At fourteen, Pete Reeves had an article accepted by Punch magazine and as a twenty-four-year-old copywriter his work won fi ve prestigious CLIO awards and a CLIO Oscar for advertising excellence at the New York Advertising fair. Soon after that he was to become Head of Commercial production at Piccadilly Radio in Manchester, then Head of Music and Presentation as well as one of the station’s frontline broadcasters. Later, he was to write Cabs, a daily soap, for Piccadilly, as well as articles for local and national press and magazines. His television work started with Cosgrove Hall Films in Manchester where he has written for such series as Cockleshell Bay, Duckula, Fantomcat, and Creepy Crawlies. Recently, he has finished scriptwork on Bob the Builder, Postman Pat, Pingu, Rudi and Trudi, and Hanna’s Helpline. He has also written Bob the Builder stage shows for the British and Australian markets. In January 2007 Pete won a fi nalist certificate at the New York Animation Festival for his work on Bob the Builder. Peter writes regularly in the press as well as lecturing on the Media Studies courses at Salford and Bolton Universities. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

23 At present, Phil Saxe is a Senior Lecturer at LIPA in Liverpool. He also has a history of being at the forefront on burgeoning cultural movements. As a pivotal part of Factory Records’ success in the halcyon days of Madchester, Phil discovered and managed The Happy Mondays while, among numerous other highlights for the label, he A&R’d New Order’s chart-topping and now evergreen World Cup single, World In Motion. He has researched the processes behind successful branding, investigated the barriers to marketing the arts, and is currently studying the perseverance of youth sub-cultures. He has prepared business plans for fledgling airlines and managed successful product ranges of toys, frozen foods, and non-edible consumables. Through his work as In The City’s A&R Director, he has also played a major role in launching the careers of Oasis, Coldplay, Muse, and The Darkness. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

24 Originally Howard Sharrock qualified as a Chartered Accountant in the U.K. but soon migrated to independent media advisor to numerous Manchester bands and record labels. From there advising them on disputes and bankruptcy, through to searching for non-rendered royalties. On digital rights management (DRM) he has advised on the acquisition of publishing rights of recorded music. Most recent positions include Chair and Director of Galaxy Radio Manchester England. Accessed May 28, 2008.

25 Recently honoured for his services to music in Scotland, Billy Sloan is an influential media personality in that country. Through his radio program on Glasgow’s Radio Clyde he became known for his ability to spot upcoming bands or musical trends. Throughout the years, bands such as Simple Minds, Franz Ferdinand, The Cocteau Twins, The Associates, Waterboys, Skids, Big Country, Proclaimers, Deacon Blue, Run Rig, Annie Lennox, and other major Scottish musical exports have all cited Billy as having played a pivotal role in their development. http://www.sixfi Accessed May 28, 2008.

26 Based in France, Neil Storey’s thirty-six year history within music and related areas incorporates time at EMI, Island Records, Sport For Television, BMG, The Coalition Group, and, more recently, running his own management company. Accessed May 28, 2008.

27 Owner of Pangaea Media and Music, Inc., Tony Tobias has been an active member of the Canadian music and cultural industries for over thirty years with a career spanning music publishing, artist management, writing and producing music videos, film, television, and new media. He established his music publishing operation in the 1970s and represents Grammy and Juno winning The Jeff Healey Band, multi-award winning writer Ken Tobias, Latin guitarist Nick Cuda, as well as numerous film and TV scores. Accessed May 28, 2008.

28 As well as running the U.K.’s largest independent label, Virgin Records, for many years, Jon Webster was a founding member of the U.K.’s record company trade association, The British Phonographic Industry (BPI), for whom he was a Council Member from 1985 to 1992. He pioneered Britain’s prestigious Mercury Music Prize; has worked as an International Marketing consultant to companies such as Mute, Virgin, Echo, MCI, and; is a frequent contributor to TV and Radio; and worked as Director of Independent Member Services for the BPI; and is now CEO of the MMF. http:// Accessed May 28, 2008.

29 Accessed April 8, 2008. 30 Ibid. 31 Accessed May 28, 2008. 32 Comment taken from personal correspondence with the author con-

ducted in April, 2008.


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Two individuals have assisted and encouraged me to write this article. In the first instance, I gratefully acknowledge that the original idea for Campus Music International was generated by Jason Free of the Six Finger Think Tank, LLC. This project is now under development by the SFTT. Dr. Catherine Moore of New York University is the Global Academic Chair for the SFTT. She has played a major role in the initiative’s development and has assisted greatly in the writing of this article. Both Jason and Catherine provided me with internal SFTT information from 2006 through 2008. Without this support and information completion of this article would not have been possible. I would also like to thank Ava Lawrence of Northeastern University for granting me a research interview and for her general collegiality.

GUY MORROW lecturers in music business, artist management, and music theory at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia. He is also an artist manager who has worked with numerous artists including his current client Cuthbert & the Night Walkers. He started DCMS Records and MQ Productions at Macquarie University and has worked closely with many music business entities including Warner Music, ABC Music, Mushroom Music Publishing, the Harbour Agency, Rough Cut Music Publishing, and MGM Distribution. His Ph.D. concerned artist management practices and his current research analyzes the dramatic changes that are impacting “content” and media companies due to the development of new technologies. He has recently published articles concerning Radiohead’s post-EMI career strategy and the operation of Australian music management and production companies Engine Room and Eleven Music. He is also a member of the U.S.-based Six Finger Think Tank through which he is involved in consulting work concerning the emergence of the new online music business as well as the further development of e-learning and m-learning in the education sector.