Starting January I tried to schedule meetings with industry professionals attending MIDEM this year. I emailed to participate in Rethink workshop, instead of participating in it, I got to volunteer and help out during the first day of MIDEM. About 30 successful music industry experts joined the workshop that was organized and executed by Allen Bargfrede and Emilien Moyon from Berklee College of Music. Those participating were tasked with coming up with an innovative business idea for one of 5 artists presented to them that day. The workshop gave me the opportunity to network with some participants especially when I got to meet a past high profile business partner from my previous job whom I’ve only known via email.
I also had an opportunity to help out at the Korean Pavilion throughout this year’s MIDEM. There were more than 30 companies who attended from South Korea and 4 artists/team scheduled to perform at the “K-pop Night Out”. After PSY’s success in 2012, I heard people got more and more interested in KPOP and that was evident with the various producers, songwriters, and labels from all over the world that came to the booth willing to do business with Korea. Adding to my surprise was the fact that the media wanted to do interviews with the Korean artists. It was nice to see the Korean booth crowded, filled with meetings trying to do business with all the companies, and people showing lots of interests in KPOP.
I ran into a friend who were on a tour with me back in 2010! You meet everyone at MIDEM!
I got a text from my parents who are in Korea currently saying they saw me on the news. And also an article was released in Korean with my name on it!, about how MIDEM is a “must go conference”, approximately 30 of Berklee Valencia students referring us as the future music business leaders. I feel proud about it J I even had the honor of translating and helping out Kpop artists which was a great experience and seeing them perform that night was even better. I was already a huge fan of Dynamic Duo but now I’m crazy about them.
There were several sessions I attended, one of my favorites was “Artists Speak to Artists: Dynamic Duo and VIXX, Building an Artist’s Career”. As a person who is interested in A&R, I really enjoyed the Building an Artist’s Career session because they discussed the strategies they used to seek out artists or songs. One thing I took away was the important of someone working in A&R having a strong commitment when they discover someone who they really believe in. I think some of these key points really will stick with as I move on in my career. They are definitely simple points, but sometimes its easy to get lost in the music industry and lose sight of what you love about your job in the first place.
The 15 hour bus ride there and back was rough and tiring but the “networking” during day & night mad it well worth it. To be honest, I did not really attend all the workshops or conference sessions I originally planned and promised myself to go on my planner, but I definitely met a lot of people and came back with a stack of business cards. With 2 awesome volunteer opportunities, few meetings (random and planned),interviews, translating, and being in a Korean news article, I think I had a productive time at MIDEM this year.