I just saw the speaker’s lineup on a fairly new showcase festival. Right now, everything is about curating and here they had the worst I ever seen in my life. I guess the person who runs it hasn’t been in the business for a while. The person was something around ten years ago but then disappeared. Suddenly, they don’t understand that the industry has moved on. The three top names were people that we all laugh at inside the industry since they are sending emails all the time that they should speak. Mainly because they want to travel, but also because they probably feel that the industry no longer really wants them around so they are kind of desperate. The problem with them is that they have no contribution whatsoever. Their networks are old their festivals and influence disappeared long before the pandemic. In all fairness, they can’t help anyone and can only provide old-time stories about things that happened 25 years ago.
In reality, they just picked three old farts from the retirement home to speak about the good old days. On top of that, they just had a local music industry. Since this is such a small country it doesn’t make any sense at all. Out of the local industry, you had three out of the thirty listed that have some sort of small value. And I see this more and more. I get more and more disappointed in the lineupsof speakers at the festivals. I get more and more disappointed with the suggestions of speakers that I get.
In a way, we need to stop these painful showcase attempts. At the same time how? Since we don’t sell tickets instead, we are all sponsored by government organizations we live kind of carefree and just put something together. And to be fair nowadays you just go to the events that you are specially invited to. My guess we are entering phase two of the showcase festivals. And in my opinion, they probably will have a new name and another vision. That is why I’m excited to start building the new ones. I have already found a couple that are developing fine, and I want to make this ride with them.
Long gone is that you can rely on a big network, especially if the network is a couple of years old. Everything right now must be state of the art even in the speaker and conference part. The artist must be better, there can’t be any local heroes who think they should build teams. No, we are moving on to artists that already have teams, quite big teams, and want to join in with other big teams. The newcomer must build their teams in another way. Mainly because the audience wants to discover new stuff. And they must be blown away, so you can’t have an artist that is still experimenting with their stage show, you must go for the fully developed that are looking to get part of their 1000 superfans.
The speakers must have done something in the past two years. Here we can’t hold on to old things, only as inspirational history, nothing more. My guess is also the old panels are kind of gone. We are already testing new systems this week to have totally different meeting points and discussions, panels might just be there for the local heroes as an entry point. We also look at decision-makers. These teams that we are gathering usually don’t see any value in record labels or booking agencies since they are so connected that they go straight to the streaming platform, or the festival or gig place they need. What they want is the decision maker, not someone that should go to someone else. The old networks were that. They were protected at all costs and then you must rely on someone claiming to be able to execute the things you need. Today the world is so small that you can’t be important with a network, you must be able to execute the decisions. Those are the people that will be part of the showcase version two.