Music is at the heart of a healthy, thriving, liveable, sustainable city. Not only in the openness of cultural creation and delivery, but also in influencing how residents view where they choose to live and work. However, when music policy is applied to urban planning, large scale initiatives (such as Olympic bids and branding) and city development, the impact of and on the music industry is not often thoroughly considered. However, the music industry impacts a number of key imperatives in city / municipal development and urban affairs, from singular sector development to education and training capacities, regulatory affairs, soft diplomacy and city branding, international network expansion and market development. For a city, region or municipality to thrive, music industry development must be strategised within its key economic policies, as a healthy music (and greater cultural industries) output creates and sustains world-class cities.
In our increasingly borderless world, where art can be discovered and heralded via an Internet connection, cities are competing to train and retain talent, drive new business ventures and economic prosperity, identify and encourage skilled immigration and define itself as globally leaders. By appealing to skilled young entrepreneurs and creating economically prosperous centres and creative clusters, city development, image and branding are enhanced. This turns cities in future cities and smart cities, and one of the key variables to attaining and creating such development is by supporting cultural development with an economic strategy.
At Sound Diplomacy: Cities, we believe that a healthy, robust music industry impacts not only musicians, managers, labels, publishers, venue goers, consumers and copyright holders, but also a number of secondary and tertiary industries from food vendors at music festivals to sound and light providers, local bars and restaurants and infrastructure providers such as logistic companies, utility providers and hospitality. However, too often cities have talent (the artists) but lack business people in the contemporary music industry, leading to a dearth in sustainable career development. When this occurs, the creator migrates elsewhere, impacting the entire value chain that surrounds them, from the bars and restaurants they perform in to the equipment they hire and the transport they use to reach the venue. Music is part of a city’s central nervous system. By analysing educational provisions, licensing, live music policy, music industry development and education, economic impact, festival impacts, taxation and business support mechanisms, a healthy music industry can and does create the world’s most liveable, smartest and most desirable cities. This is the mission of Sound Diplomacy: Cities. We use music industry development strategy to make cities (or neighbourhoods, regions and municipalities) an economic return, via more prosperous and industrious music industry policies that engenders a more vibrant place to live and work.
As the Hacienda branded Manchester and The Beatles branded Liverpool, there is an artist in your city right now who can be the next international star. It is this robust analysis and strategy of what is needed and a series of delivery mechanisms to further enhance music industry development that will find them and provide them with the tools for international success. That, in turns, brings a return the city and those who live and work within it.
The picture above is of Adelaide, one of the most forward thinking cities in terms of music industry development. We’ll explain why soon.
This company has it spot on. Sound Diplomacy!