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Live From Google's Music Roundtable In Hollywood

Jason Kincaid
TechCrunch.com
Wednesday, October 28, 2009 3:50 PM

Google has just launched into a surprise roundtable at its music event in Hollywood, where a number of top music executives and artists are discussing the news and the music industry. I'm live blogging my notes below (everything paraphrased).

Guests:

Mos Def

Wendy Nussbaum (UMG)

Steve Savoca (Domino Recording)

Syd Schwartz (EMI)

Mike Shinoda (Linkin Park)

Ryan Tedder (OneRepublic)

Mike Shinoda: We used to be called Hybrid Theory. We settled on Lincoln Park, we went online to see if we could get our URL. We were online early on, changed the name of the band to get URL that would give the fans the most direct link to our fans.

Q: Did you ever think international? Do you think about the French version of the Linkin Park website?

MS: We're in the process of doing that right now to create an easier experience for fans in Asia and Europe..

Q:What do you think of what we're launching today, what do you see happening from record label perspective?

WN:I think this is an amazing new product launch. Consumers want something easy, Google gives it to them. The key thing for us is that you're leading people to legitimate sources of music. Whereas Googlesearch is dynamic, don't control what rises to the top. This is guaranteed to be our partners.

Q: We've been talking about music discovery.

Syd Schwartz: I remember back in the day part of my things to do was build out my jazz library. I remember going to Tower Records, saw Donald Fagan of Steeley Dan, was trying to follow him to see what he got. Took a while, I discovered some great stuff but was sort of stalking the guy. Now I look at what has been presented here today┬┐ There's never been anything like this to help discover music.

Q:What gets you excited in the world of Technology?

Mos Def: I think Google and technology and events like this have been incredibly important to artists. We're still absorbing it, I think it will take half a generation to fully understand these. It's a huge presence in artists around the world. Me, I walk around every day feeling I'm in Battlestar Galatica. I'm still really getting over the cell phone to be honest.

Q: Are you thinking of these as a megaphone?

MD: It's a way to share new content. I think what we're in now is similar to the early 20th century which had lots of technological advances. It's a wide open field. What you see here with having an artist recording a song Tuesday, having it out Wednesday or Thursday is really exciting, helps connect more organically.

Q; You represent lots of up and coming artists, what does this launching mean to you?

Steve Savoca: It's absolutely outstanding to have an independent having a seat of the table today, this means a lot to us. What we do is niche, we're tlaking about artists that are primarily word of mouth. People come to our artist through hearing about them and wanting to listen about them immediately. What we're talking about here is instant gratification ? hear about it, search for it, listen to it. This is a huge opportunity for us. What Lala has invented and what iLike brings these are fantastic, what's been missing has been a conduit to bring music fans to these services.

The challenge remains, we have to change consumption behavior. We have to make it turn key to access these amazing music services, and I think that's been lacking.

Q: I was watching the video for your music video to Apologize, started counting up the numbers for number of people who had watched the video. And setting aside all the fun and crazy covers, just looking at yours, over 120 million views. Can you speak to how this has an influence on ou going forward?

Ryan Tedder: When the Apologize remix came out, the question was do you feel Timbaland was what made you guys break. I always tell people we broke through MySpace. I'm not going to say which record label was dropped, by the same label who dropped Katy Perry and Jonas Brothers. We joined MySpace forever ago, when it had 2 million people. I thought if I have to shower posters around town, that sucks. The Internet.. MySpace was perfect, free, we used that like crazy. If I knew that I had a show or something coming up I would find every high school in that city, and Email everyone from age 16-22. We became top unsigned artist on MySpace, labels came after us. Apologize was on MySpace for three years before it came out. By the time it came out, no discredit to Timabland, had quarter billion listens before it hit radio. OneRepublic wouldn't be here without Myspace. On Google when you typed in a song, the first 6-7 things were bittorrent illegal download sites, this fixes that. Someone once said we had 75 million illegal downloads. When I hear about this Google thing, that's what gets me most excited because now those will be top.

We've partnered up with MySpace to help launch the album. This was perfect timing for us, this made total sense.

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