How can you succeed in the music business? No, that's not a trick question. You actually can do it, and Tom Silverman wants to help. In addition to being the founder of Tommy Boy Records (the one-time home of such luminaries as Queen Latifah, De La Soul and Naughty By Nature), Silverman created the New Music Seminar in New York City in 1980. Now, after a 15-year hiatus, he's bringing it back.
Before you scoff at the idea of a new problem being addressed by the old guard, take a look at the lineup of industry professionals slated to appear at the Park West on Tuesday, October 6. It includes representatives from the likes of Pitchfork, Reverbnation.com, Sound Exchange and many other big players, not to mention keynote speaker Michael Spiegelman of Yahoo! Music. Panel discussions on business strategy, new media marketing, the creative process and concert tours will make this a key event for both learning and networking -- which makes the $125 registration fee seem worth it (consider it payback for all the music you've downloaded illegally over the years).
The Seminar actually caps off a big weekend for music in Chicago, as the 5th Annual Global Mixx Retreat will go down from October 2-4 at various venues. The Retreat is a music and marketing gathering aimed at the urban music community, featuring DJs, label execs, managers, entertainment lawyers and more. This year's panels ("Marketing and Branding in the Digital Age," "Songwriting, Publishing & Licensing," "The Global DJ," "Radio Chronicles," "A&R Sessions" and "Music Meets Politics") will be augmented by several artist showcases and producer battles -- making this as much about entertainment as it is about education.