The 10th annual Sync Up conference is coming April 28 to May 6. This unique conference brings together leaders in music, film and digital media for educational and networking sessions during Jazz Fest. Events include Sync Up Music April 28-29 and May 5 which will be streamed live at wwoz.org/livevideo.
With panel discussions, interviews, screenings and social events, Sync Up approaches the entertainment business from the perspective of the independent artist. All events take place at the George & Joyce Wein Jazz & Heritage Center (1225 N. Rampart St.).
Highlights of Sync Up Music 2017:
• A keynote interview with Derek Vincent Smith, aka the electronic music megastar Pretty Lights
• “Case study” discussions with two New Orleans groups who broke big in 2017: The Revivalists and Tank & the Bangas
• Panels on women at the helm of major event production, a clear-eyed look at the cost of making indie records and licensing music to nontraditional film outlets
• An “entrepreneur focus” on O.G. Blake Owens, who masterfully cross-promotes his businesses in hip-hop and night bike touring
For the complete schedule of panels, keynotes and screenings, please visit www.syncupconference.com.
SYNC UP 2017
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
Friday, April 28 SYNC UP MUSIC
10a Panel Discussion
How Much Should You Spend on Your Indie Record?
The promise of digital technology was that we’d all be making albums in our bedrooms on our laptops for free, right? Some artists – especially in hip-hop – are able to do just that, and convincingly. But many others are spending anywhere from $1,500 to $30,000, and sometimes more, to make a professionally produced record in a proper studio. How much should you plan to spend? We talk to four record makers with wildly divergent approaches.
Brian Seeger, jazz musician
Nesby Phips, rap artist
Lefty Parker, rock artist
Chris Finney, record producer/engineer
11a Case Study
Since forming in New Orleans 10 years ago, The Revivalists have built a career the old-fashioned way: one fan at a time, thanks to blistering live performances. Without much fanfare, they’ve steadily built an audience to the point where they’re main attractions at many of the biggest festivals in the country – getting billing higher than bands that have been around twice as long. What did they learn along the way? We talk to key members to find out.
David Shaw, lead singer
Zack Feinberg, guitar
Andrew Campanelli, drums
Dave Melerine, tour manager
11:40a Entrepreneur Spotlight
O.G. Blake Owens, hip-hop artist and co-founder Bike Rite/Get Up N Ride
A polished G-funk rapper with several solid releases to his name, O.G. Blake Owens had a straight job at a music club and was promoting shows on the side to spotlight his friends. Then he had a vision – a brightly lit one – of friends on multi-colored bicycles taking over the night streets. His Get Up N Ride rolling parties have become a massive phenomenon – changing the bicycle culture of New Orleans – and a profitable sideline that he cross-promotes with his music.
12:15p Panel Discussion
Meet the Festival Buyers
You’ve got a new act on the scene and you want to get beyond nightclubs. What’s next? Festivals. But it’s too hard – and too expensive – to make big road trips. So you need to break into the festivals in your hometown. We introduce you to some of the key talent buyers at the bigger festivals in the New Orleans market, so you can hear what it takes to score a gig. You’re welcome.
Don Kelly, Voodoo Music & Art Festival
Reeves Price, Buku Music Festival
Jared Zeller, Mid-City Bayou Boogaloo Festival
Greg Schatz, French Quarter Festival
Cleveland Spears, Fried Chicken Festival
Saturday, April 29 SYNC UP MUSIC
10a Panel Discussion
Planning your release strategy: Distribution, Publicity and Gigs
Should you make physical product or go strictly digital? Should you hire a publicist? Or a radio promoter? What outlets mean the most to your audience? What gigs are not only attainable but also make strategic sense?
AF THE NAYSAYER, rapper
Josh Hefner, drummer and business manager, The Royal Teeth
Marc Broussard, singer/songwriter
11a Panel Discussion
Getting Your Music Into Non-Traditional Film/Video Projects
Licensing a track to a major motion picture or TV production requires access to a very insular circle of the “music supervisors” who recommend tunes to directors and producers. Is there a way into the world of “sync” licensing that bypasses the big players? Web TV, upstart video games and indie films are great ways to get a foot in the door.
Josh Rabinowitz, The Grey Group
Sarah Bromberg, music supervisor
Darcy McKinnon, New Orleans Video Access Center
12p Keynote Interview
A skateboarder turned punk rocker from Colorado, Derek Vincent Smith went on to become the famous DJ/producer who Rick Rubin called “the face and voice of the new American electronic music scene.” But even if electronic music is his thing, he never lost the taste for real musicians improvising onstage. So it’s not entirely surprising that one of the biggest concert draws on the tour circuit now calls New Orleans home. We hear his thoughts on how young artists can break through in today’s music business.
Moderator: Sam D’Arcangelo, OffBeat magazine