Business

DIY Tip: How Ghostly Knowledge Share Is Helping Indie Creators Network

Amanda Colbenson
Katie Laskowska

Amanda Colbenson

Ghostly director of special projects and A&R coordinator Amanda Colbenson launched Ghostly Knowledge Share in 2017 to connect the indie label’s team members and artists with aspiring young creatives. During the pandemic, they’ve livestreamed their networking and education panels on Twitch — and seen a spike in their reach. Here, Colbenson explains how the program started and reveals where it’s headed.

“Ghostly Knowledge Share started from the idea of a community-focused initiative and utilizing the immediate resources we had available — the artists and professionals we work with. We felt passionately about encouraging those interested in music and creative industries and [wanted to] help demystify the process by which one begins and flourishes in the field.

“We worked closely for our first Knowledge Share with a youth-led organization, Neutral Zone, in Ann Arbor [Mich.], whom we had a history with. The teens in this organization have a hand in everything, from programming to their record label to A&R for the company. We had a full day of curriculum [for them] including workshops, panels, Q&As and one-on-one peer sessions with our artists. From that we gathered so much insight moving forward with events in specific cities about partnering with local organizations, really getting to the heart of what [that community] would be interested in and finding artists who were involved.

“We always had a mission to bring this to a more global audience. Now that things are in a virtual realm, it’s a lot easier — or maybe it’s more difficult, because there’s a much bigger pool [of panelists and topics] to choose from. It’s really exciting to connect people in different cities and time zones who maybe haven’t met in person but always wanted to.

“It’s really important to have opportunities to share your wisdom and experiences. With the series, it has been interesting to start with 20 attendees in a room and now we’ve had almost 100,000 viewers total tune in to these. There really is a network of creatives and people who work with creatives who support each other. If you want to start a label, reach out to labels you admire — use your community. And even if they’re not directly in front of you, they are out there.”

This article originally appeared in the Nov. 14, 2020, issue of Billboard.