As National Association of Recording Merchandisers (NARM) delegates flew into Los Angeles this week for the organizatin's annual convention, held at the Century City Hyatt Regency, the confab's pre-opening segment crash course was winding down.
The segment was a two-day event, staged by A2IM in conjunction with NARM, designed to help new industry players get an overview of the music industry. But even in remedial-type courses, some insight and news tidbits can be found.
For example, in a panel on publishing and licensing income, Mack Avenue Records president Denny Stillwell said that the days of independent records partnering with one label overseas to issue albums are over. "Now it is done more an album-by-album basis," he said.
Meanwhile, as expected, synchronization is the hot area in publishing -- but not only for the revenue it generates. Nettwerk Records co-founder Mark Jowett said that one of the acts on the label got 75 placements before the album came out, helping to drive awareness for the release.
"It's promotion that you get paid for," Jowett said. When labels are fortunate enough to find themselves with synch placements, Vagrant label manager Dan Gill said, "You have to connect all the dots. If you know when it is going to air, you can try and get an iTunes spot that week."
Likewise, Miserable Beast Music managing partner Nate Nelson said that when breaking records, instead of trying to get their songs on radio or get the CD in a Best Buy end-cap, he was setting up a band by getting their songs placement in Adidas commercials.
Beyond using synch as a promotional tune, Vargrant's Gill said, "I don't even look to the chains anymore. I set up new bands with iTunes and indie retailers."