Family In Music has made a strong impression so far this year with its plans to help protect the rights and increase revenue for songwriters.
With a growing streaming economy, this is a growing market of potential customers – independent artists – for the tech start-up. Family In Music has started rolling out tools for DIY artists, including a royalty-advance option for streaming revenue.
The Finnish company has also recruited a pair of well-known industry figures: Kevin Bacon and Tim Delaney (in the photo, left-right).
Kevin Bacon, founder of the original AWAL as well as producer and former member of post-punk band Comsat Angels, serves as Chief Innovation Officer. He recently served as CEO of blockchain-based startup Blockpool.
Tim Delaney, formerly a member of U2’s management team, is managing director. Over the past 15 years, Delaney – also a veteran of Island, Mercury, RCA, Arista and J Records labels in the US, UK, Australia and Asia – has been involved in various tech start-ups musical.
Growing awareness of the lack of royalty data and the vast sums that creators could collectively miss out on has led to the rise of several tech start-ups, while others are building companies to help executives and creatives navigate the vast amounts of music. available. music week recently profiled companies such as Audoo, Utopia Music and Musiio, which was recently acquired by SoundCloud.
Now it’s Family In Music’s turn to pitch to the industry and artists. Here, Kevin Bacon and Tim Delaney reveal their vision for the business in the growing streaming economy…
What does your experience working with tech and music creators bring to this startup?
Kevin Bacon: “I spent over 30 years in the pure creator space, first as an artist and songwriter in a moderately successful 80s band, followed by 15 years as a record producer in moderate success.But my overall conclusion was that no matter how good the technology was, it never seemed to bring me much financial benefit.
“A chance encounter with Denzyl Feigelson in 2004 sparked a new career development in the tech space with AWAL, which lasted until our exit from Kobalt in 2012. It was a chance to create change – and we did with the first One Page Agreement and 30 Day Term, which was derided by most at the time. Initially, we thought we were a service company, but quickly began to grow our own tech, as we couldn’t find the tech we needed AWAL was based in RAK studios, a place to show off our innovative analysis software, where you could also bump into Jimmy Page at reception and hear the recording Arctic Monkeys in the studio below. But that was over 10 years ago and the creator space has exploded and mutated yet again. Another chance to create change.
Tim Delaney: “I started in the music business in Dublin because of my passion for music. I quickly discovered that I had little musical chops, and like so many others, that meant I had become a band manager. A lot of that meant finding gigs and being a roadie. Making progress was really hard and it was very hectic, “trial and error” and hoping someone would pass on some gems of knowledge. It was the classic “you don’t know what you don’t know” situation. Later, I was lucky enough to join a record company in Australia, where I developed a deep understanding of artist development and marketing and also worked with some great people. I’ve been involved in almost every area of the business, so I’m very clear about the many challenges that artists and their teams face.
“Technology has always advanced and disrupted our industry and now it’s no different. But there are also winners and losers in the process. My experience helps Family In Music focus on the ‘areas of pain’ in and navigate the artist development process. We will use our collective expertise and the FIM network to provide real solutions, so that the creator’s journey is less difficult and more rewarding. We cannot guarantee success, but we can help improve the odds.
We can’t guarantee success, but we can help improve the odds
What is Family In Music’s business model – how do you profit financially from ensuring a fair deal for songwriters?
KB: “We are primarily a low-cost, subscription-based platform, so we will live or die by the quality of our market fit and the value we provide. The advantage we have over profit-sharing models is that we can develop tools that don’t need to generate direct revenue – they can be opportunity-driven. We are developing ideas to create virtual songwriting camps in a Family In Music meta-space environment, allowing unprivileged songwriters to participate in the personality of their choice, without costly and devastating flights for the climate to luxury destinations.
TD: “There’s always money to be made by helping to resolve sticking points in an industry. We want to provide all the necessary tools and knowledge to help solve problems. We think the songwriter is particularly underserved in many ways, and it’s no surprise that he’s benefited the least from technological change in terms of financial reward.
“We build technology-based tools that help protect [the MgNTa song identifier tool], educate and market songwriters and their output. Our industry is built on the song and the creators who bring it to life and we want technology to help them, not hinder them. We’re also keenly aware that creators may view the process of writing a traditional rock song as very different from composing for a TikTok music video, and our approach recognizes that.
We’ve heard a lot about blockchain – how important will it be for the music industry and rights holders?
KB: “I was known as a blockchain skeptic who ran a blockchain company [Blockpool] for a while around 2017-18. I think that’s a healthy principle in this loud and often ugly space full of get-rich-quick schemes. I believe in blockchain for good, not greed – and as such, yes, we use blockchain as part of our tech stack. Our MgNTa platform operates partly on a custom sidechain and we use NFTs to define copyright participation. I wrote last year that 2022 would be the year regulators jumped on the biggest scammers, suing for copyright infringement due to NFT exploitation.
TD: “Blockchain has the ability to ‘democratize’ business because it provides the means, in simple terms, to manage rights and collect revenue. It will undoubtedly be part of the future. At Family In Music, we talk a lot about not wanting to “fix” the past, but instead focus on building the future and empowering creators in the process. Blockchain will definitely be part of this future and we are already using blockchain for the MgNTa rights tool.
How does the company finance its growth?
TD: “Family In Music is a Finnish company and we have worked closely with Business Finland and seed investors in Finland to fund us so far. As we begin our business and international journey, we will be looking to expand our funding and this will be a big priority for us until 2022.”
My belief is in blockchain for good, not greed
What was the reaction to the model and your plans? What do you think of potential rivals in this space, like Utopia Music, serving the interests of music creators?
KB: “We’re still very early days – we’ve only just opened and started rolling out. We’re ambitious in our user acquisition, but we’ll be watching reactions to our rollouts closely. There are many “fair” proposals for creators” – and I support them all – but we are not trying to fix the past by processing historical datasets and extracting missing revenue. We are trying to provide the know-how and tools to prevent this from happening. occur first.
TD: “It’s very early days for Family In Music. We’re just beginning our journey. The fact that there are other players focusing on this area reflects the need and the opportunity. At this time, no competitor has the “right” solution. We are certainly growing hard to be a significant player in this market and are confident in our mission. We are very focused on the first DIY market and we do not take share of revenue, but more of a subscription service. We can focus on building the right tools and if we do our job well, those tools will support artists throughout their careers.”
What other projects do you have in 2022?
TD: “Our primary goals are to successfully build the Family In Music platform. We want to grow our user base and the business as a whole, and secure a group of investors who share our vision and enable us to achieve our goals. .