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The Future of What

Music Podcasts

A weekly podcast & radio show about the music industry hosted by Music Business Association president, Portia Sabin. Listen to new episodes here, or wherever you get your podcasts!


Portland, OR


A weekly podcast & radio show about the music industry hosted by Music Business Association president, Portia Sabin. Listen to new episodes here, or wherever you get your podcasts!







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Episode #227 — Cosynd’s New Producer Copyright Registration Initiative

With almost a decade of experience securing copyrights for artists & rightsholders, Cosynd identified that music producers were being potentially priced out of registering their backlog of work with the U.S. Copyright Office. This led them to develop a new group registration service, allowing producers to save time & money by registering groups of beats and other musical elements instead of individually registering each element. We spoke with Cosynd CEO, Jessica Sobhraj about this new initiative, the company’s mission of supporting creators’ legal protections, the importance of registering music with the Copyright Office, and much more!


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Episode #226 — Creative Intell’s David Fritz & Steven Ship On Educating Today’s Artists

While looking into higher-ed music business programs, David Fritz and Steven Ship found that the segmented approach to curriculums was helpful for new students, but it did not help artists and songwriters who needed to know the ins-and-outs of how the industry works for their already established careers. This led them to start Creative Intell, which offers practical classes that give students insights and step-by-step guides on everything from recording and releasing a cover song to tracking all of their income streams. In our latest podcast, we discuss the platform’s founding, the feedback from early users, future plans for expansion and updates, and more!


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Episode #225 — Vault & beatBread’s Funding Options For Indie Artists

With more artists creating and releasing more music now than ever, there is a major need for new revenue streams and funding options to help artists take their careers to the next level. This month on The Future of What, we speak with two representatives from companies that do just that: Nick Struzenski of Vault, a bespoke catalog brokerage & artist funding service, and Matthew Tilley of beatBread, which provides funding for artists & labels alike powered by data science. Tune in for conversations about their companies’ offerings, why the need for funding is so prevalent right now, how new technologies like machine learning are making it easier to provide funding, and more!


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Episode #224 — RAMPD’s Lachi & Precious Perez on Disability Awareness & Activism

RAMPD (Recording Artists and Music Professionals with Disabilities) was founded in 2021 as a collective of artists, performers and music professionals with disabilities seeking to raise awareness of disability culture in the music business. Since then the organization has worked to advocate and create opportunities for disabled music professionals and ensure they have access to inclusive & accessible spaces, including partnering with the GRAMMYs to make the annual awards event more disability-inclusive. This month, we spoke with RAMPD’s founder, Lachi & President, Precious Perez to learn about RAMPD’s story and what the group is working on in 2024!


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Episode #223 — Trevanna Tracks’ Tools For Improving Sync Licensing

Sync placements have become a highly lucrative revenue stream for artists and rightsholders alike in recent years, as the production teams behind tv shows & movies constantly search for the perfect tracks to set the scene in their latest project. With that expanded attention to this part of the business comes a lot of extra paperwork, something that until recently sync licensing teams did not have help with. This month, we spoke with Trevanna Tracks’ CEO, Jennifer Freed and COO, Selina Meere to learn more about the company’s origins, its all-in-one solution for logging & organizing complex sync project data, and the importance of centralizing this data to increasing sync teams’ productivity!


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Episode #222 — NIVA’s Journey From Survival To Advocacy

The National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) was founded at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic as a lifeline for small live music houses, pulling together federal grant money to ensure that venues would remain afloat until it was safe for artists to tour again. Since then, the organization has shifted focus to develop a member services suite, tackle major issues like the ticketing debacle, and address the needs of venues on a local level. We spoke with NIVA's Executive Director, Stephen Parker about the organization’s history and recent advocacy work, as well as the variety of issues indie venues still face.


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Episode #221 — Exceleration Music + Redeye: An Indie Music Powerhouse

Founded in 2020 by five tenured independent music professionals, Exceleration Music set out to invest in music rights, enter strategic partnerships and develop a suite of support services, all backed by authenticity and reverence for everything essential to indie music’s DNA. The company doubled down on that commitment in September 2023 by acquiring Redeye Distribution, effectively creating an indie music powerhouse with a vast catalog and distribution reach potentially rivaling that of the major labels. In our first podcast of 2024, you’ll hear from Exceleration founder & managing partner, Glen Barros and Redeye co-founder, Glenn Dicker about the acquisition and how it stands to benefit the entire indie music business!


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Portia’s 2024 New Year’s Message

Tune in to this special message from Music Business Association President, Portia Sabin with some updates regarding our inaugural Trust & Safety In Music Symposium, Music Biz 2024, the Common Ground Webinar Series & our new Music Biz Events app, changes to our website & socials, and more!


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Episode #220 — Supporting U.S. Indie Venues: An Interview With Live Music Society’s Cat Henry

The early days of the COVID-19 pandemic opened eyes across the world to just how vital touring & live music is to the entire music business ecosystem. As venues of all sizes closed to stop the spread of COVID, a number of organizations and initiatives were founded in the first pandemic year to help local independent music houses financially stay afloat. Today, these groups now work to keep the live industry alive, providing vital grant funding and support networks to ensure these important local cultural centers remain open. This month we spoke with Executive Director of the Live Music Society, Cat Henry about how her organization got its start pre-COVID, as well as the ways it has evolved since 2020 to assist the U.S. live music industry!


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Episode #219 — LyricFind’s Darryl Ballantyne On New Tools To Enhance Lyric Offerings

In just a few short years, song lyrics have gone from a “nice to have” addition that music fans could seek out in liner notes or on the internet to a hot commodity on streaming platforms, graphics-heavy promotional videos, user-generated content and beyond. This month, we talk with LyricFind Founder & CEO, Darryl Ballantyne about the evolution of lyric-centric products, how his company liaises with labels & publishers to help support their needs, the renewed importance of proper song translations as music’s reach breaks cultural barriers, and much more!


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Episode #218 — Dolby’s Christine Thomas Talks Dolby Atmos & Immersive Audio

While some say nothing quite captures the experience of listening to music performed in-person, new technologies are bringing unparalleled levels of immersion to the music listening experience. Enter Dolby Atmos, an immersive audio format which debuted for movies more than a decade ago that is now available across music services on 2.5 billion devices. In our latest podcast, Dolby’s Head of Music Industry Relations, Christine Thomas discusses the evolution of the company’s immersive audio efforts and how it gives artists the ability to deliver their music to audiences in an exciting new medium!


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Episode #217 — DAACI Talks AI Tools To Enhance The Creative Process

Bad actors have already learned how to exploit generative AI to either pose as popular artists or misappropriate copyrighted material. However companies like DAACI are working with artists, songwriters & composers to develop tools that are additive to the creative process, helping to eliminate tedious parts of their job and overcome writer’s block. In our latest podcast, we talk to DAACI CEO, Rachel Lyske about her company’s mission to support composers with a tech suite backed by three decades of research and deep collaboration with members of the creative community to address their specific needs!


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Episode #216 — KYC Compliance To Fight Music Fraud: A Discussion With Too Lost’s Gregory Hirschhorn

After running a record label and finding common issues across several different music distribution platforms, Gregory Hirschhorn decided to enter the distribution space with Too Lost, paying extra attention to technologies and methods for combating fraud. The company uses Know Your Client (KYC) protocol, which has roots in the financial industry, to add extra security for users uploading their tracks for distribution to DSPs. This added measure helps to weed out bad actors who game the system to generate undue revenue. In our latest podcast, we talk with Hirschhorn about the benefits of implementing KYC tools and how they help protect artists and relevant rightsholders.


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Episode #215 — Generative AI In Film, TV & Other Entertainment Spaces

While generative AI can be used to help human creators develop original works, concerns exist as major film & TV studios stand to reap huge financial benefits by using the technology to wholesale develop screenplays or substitute in digital recreations of actors. This is one of the pillars of the ongoing SAG-AFTRA and WGA strikes, as workers in the creative industry fight for regulations on the technology to ensure they are not exploited for the sake of corporate profits. In our latest podcast, J. Christopher Hamilton of ARS Counsel joins us to discuss the ins-and-outs of the present issues around the strikes, as well as what early steps are being taken to support creative professionals.


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Episode #214 — Music Fights Fraud: A Discussion on Streaming Fraud with CD Baby’s Christine Barnum

Recent months have shown an uptick in the frequency and variety of fraudulent music streaming practices, allowing bad actors to collect undue revenue by criminally inflating the number of streams for tracks they upload to DSPs. In the first of two episodes this Fall covering music streaming fraud, we talk to CD Baby's Chief Revenue Officer, Christine Barnum about the history of fraudulent behavior since the start of digital music sales, CD Baby’s participation in the Music Fights Fraud initiative, why there is a need for a coalition to combat streaming fraud, and what steps are being taken today to address the issue.


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Episode #213 — Building Community In Music With Web3: Interview With Revelator’s Bruno Guez

Originally hailing from the record label side of the business, Bruno Guez founded Revelator 10 years ago to help jumpstart an evolution in digital payments to help meet the needs of the increasingly digital music industry. Fast-forward to today, and Web3 asset distribution & sales may have a similarly transformative effect on the global music business. In this month’s interview, we spoke with Guez about how Web3 will help artists & rightsholders monetize new forms of interactive content and build connections between artists and their fans with direct compensation models!


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Episode #212 — 2023 Music Biz Presidential Award Winner, Gina Miller (MNRK Music Group)

The Presidential Award for Outstanding Executive Achievement is one of the Music Business Association’s highest and longest-standing honors, presented to individuals or organizations who have contributed greatly to the overall success of the music industry. In our latest podcast interview, Gina Miller of MNRK Music Group — our 2023 Presidential Award winner — discusses her life journey from piano student to accomplished music industry executive, approaching her music industry career as a fan first, her advocacy work across Nashville Music Equality and other outlets, and so much more!


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Episode #211 — Generative AI and the Music Industry: Interview with Danielle Aguirre of the NMPA

AI and machine-learning technologies have been utilized in various capacities in the music industry for decades now. However, the rise of Generative AI — which uses existing human-created art within its algorithms to generate content — presents new legal challenges over who is compensated when the tech is used. This month, we spoke to the NMPA’s Danielle Aguirre about the current legal issues regarding copyright for AI-generated content like music, and what organizations like the NMPA are doing to support songwriters.


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Episode #210 — Music Industry Mental Health: A Conversation With Amber Health’s Dr. Chayim Newman

At the outset, Amber Health was founded to analyze the mental health needs of artists & touring professionals and develop resources to support them navigate their incredibly taxing line of work. After the COVID-19 pandemic hit, its mission and scope expanded to create boots-on-the-ground support for the mental health needs of all music industry professionals. In this interview, we speak with Amber Health co-founder, Dr. Chayim Newman about the organization’s mission and evolution over time, and what it’s doing to support executives and artists alike.


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Episode #209 — ClicknClear & Performance Sports Music Licensing

The performance sports space offers an exciting new revenue opportunity for artists whose tracks are properly licensed for use in gymnastics, dance, cheerleading and beyond. This month we talk with Chantal Epp, the founder and CEO of ClicknClear, a tech-based solution for athletes and program directors to access pre-cleared licensed music that ensures artists are paid for the use of their songs!