Paper Session 9 (Saturday 11:30-12:30) Salon A
Moderator: Timothy Channell

State of the Ol’ North – An empirical update and discussion about the recent development of the Swedish Music Industry

Henric Lindström
Head of Music & Event Management
Linnaeus University School of Business & Economics

This paper discusses the recent development of the music industry in Sweden through three sectors: Recorded Music, Live Music, and Copyright. During the past three years the revenues from recorded music in Sweden have grown constantly and there is a sense of turning the tide within the recorded music industry following somewhat ten years of experienced crisis. It is even so often claimed that Sweden is in the forefront of the “new music industry” or “the streaming paradigm”, being early technological adopters, suggesting that Sweden is paving the way for this development in the global music industry. According to IFPI (2014) the total increase of revenues from recorded music the past five years in Sweden is, indeed, 27% and by 2013 reached the highest level since 2004 (which equals roughly 60% of the top year of 2000). There is a similar development of the industry in Norway with an increase of revenues by 11% during 2013 alone (Nylin 2014). In both cases this is driven by increasing revenues from streaming music services while the physical sales are constantly decreasing both in value as in units with the exception being vinyl records (Nylin 2014 & IFPI 2014). The cut between digital and physical sales in Sweden during 2013 was, according to IFPI (2014) 76% digital, 24% physical. 71% of the grand total derived from streaming according to IFPI (ibid.), where Spotify is by far the major player in Sweden, leaving 5% to other digital revenue streams, which is much different from other markets where the streaming model as of yet hasn’t had the same impact, partly due to other dominating ways of consumption, tradition and possible industry structure. The streaming companies themselves however are still suffering from low economic viability and the future of the companies, and maybe the entire business model, are not determined by the success in the Swedish nor Scandinavian music industries but rather by the adaptation of the streaming model in the global music industry and its key markets (comp. Johansson 2013), or the lack thereof. The development in to a “streaming paradigm” has furthermore proven to have an impact on the market shares of the labels in Sweden; with the three majors being the winners and the independent record labels on an accumulated level losing ground.

Simultaneously media is picking up on the term “festival death” due to the bankruptcy of well-known festival trademarks with cancelled festivals as a consequence in Sweden. According to the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth the live music sector, of which festivals are a core part, stands for over 50% of the total turn-over for the industry as a whole (Tillväxtverket 2012). It’s been said that, together with increased copyright revenues, the growth of the live music sector roughly made up for the loss from recorded music the past ten years when looking at the turn-over for the entire industry. This paper argues, backed with newly published statistics by Daniel Johansson (2014), that the term “festival death” is greatly misleading since the increased ticket sales between 2000 and 2013 of the ten biggest commercial festivals is 144% (Johansson, 2014) and hence contributed greatly to making up the loss from recorded music for the industry as a whole. The usage of the term “festival death” might in any case suggest a change within the festival and the live music industry landscape. By taking a deeper look in to what festivals actually have disappeared and what has replaced them it can be concluded that smaller non-profit or independent organizations which historically have produced the major festivals have found themselves out of business or marginalized, with a few exceptions. Interesting patterns were a few bigger actors having a larger stake in the music industry are starting to emerge in multiple sectors. Nonetheless, on an aggregated level, if the revenues from recorded music keep increasing and the revenues from live and copyright areas at least stay the same or ideally grow, that would suggest that the Swedish music industry as a whole is in a state of growth or even an exceptional state of growth. But problems might arise. Recent statistics have indicated a flattening curve regarding the revenues from streaming (comp. Johansson 2014b). A major question might therefore be how to interpret this recent development and how to handle a possible stagnation of the revenues from recorded music for the industry as a whole.

Teaching Hip-Hop Production Skills in Songwriting Classes

Robert Willey
Director, Music Media Production and Industry
Ball State University

In this curriculum hip-hop techniques are introduced in the same order as the accompanying technology was introduced historically: turntables, drum machines, samplers, and sequencing. The skills that are developed can be applied to creating grooves in a variety of styles such as pop, dance, and film music. It also provides an opportunity for students to use the recording studio as a compositional tool, something that is not generally stressed in recording techniques courses. PreSonus’ Studio One (free) software is used for some of the exercises, allowing students to move between the lab, studio, and home systems.