Tallinn Music Week conference program announced

Tallinn Music Week proudly presents two living legends of music industry in the conference program focusing on innovation and new revenue streams for music industry; the conference will kick off with an opening speech by the President of Estonia Toomas Hendrik Ilves on April 5, at 10, Tallinn Music Week's representatives said in a statement.

The fifth Tallinn Music Week conference is proud to present a celebrity interview with a living legend, Mr. Seymour Stein - the co-founder and chairman of Sire Records, the label that put punk and New Wave, not to mention the maverick likes of Madonna, on the map.

One of the most honored and respected old-school “record label men”, still working in the music business, Stein succeeded by anticipating the next musical wave and signing its brightest lights. In 1975, for instance, he saw four glowering, black-leather-clad guys from Queens who played lightning-fast tunes in a style without precedent. “It was like sticking my hand in a live electric light socket,” Stein recalled of his first exposure to the Ramones. Punk-rock was born with the Ramones’ eponymous first album recorded for a mere $6,400 and released on Sire in 1976. Sire has always been a goldmine for cutting-edge music, from popular trailblazers like Talking Heads, the Cure and the Smiths to deserving cult favorites like the Flamin' Groovies, the Dead Boys and Richard Hell and the Voidoids. From UK he lassoed the Cult, Aztec Camera, Echo and the Bunnymen, My Bloody Valentine and Primal Scream.

A major non-New Wave acquisition during that fertile period was a rising young dance-music artist named Madonna. Sire released her first single, “Everybody," in the fall of 1982, and Stein asked for a full album from the superstar-to-be at a meeting with her, famously held in a hospital room where he was recuperating from a heart infection.

“He’s more interested in the music than whether he’s going to get platinum records out of it,” Madonna said.

Not only is Seymour Stein joining us in Tallinn this time, but together with Eric McLellan, the A&R at Warner Bros., he recently also signed the very first Estonian talent - Ewert and The Two Dragons to whom Sire has acclaimed to have very high hopes for.

Peter Jenner (Sincere Management & former Secretary General, IMMF) will lend his expertise to two panels, addressing the topic of new business models in music industry together with a key-note speech to guide listeners into the intriguing subject matter, and also sharing his knowledge as a prolific artist manager on the managers’ panel. In the 1960s Jenner and his business partner Andrew King turned Syd Barret era Pink Floyd from an unknown band into the leading lights of London's psychedelic underground. Jenner put on a number of free concerts in London's Hyde Park, which also included the legendary 1969 concert by The Rolling Stones. Besides Pink Floyd, he has managed superstars and luminaries as T. Rex, Ian Dury, Roy Harper, The Clash, The Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, Robyn Hitchcock, Baaba Maal, Sarah Jane Morris, Denzil and Eddi Reader (Fairground Attraction). Jenner has also managed Billy Bragg for more than 15 years.

The new business models panel will tap into the deep knowledge of Dagfinn Bach - one of the pioneers in the online music space, who was involved in the development of the first MP3 player in 1993. He was a consultant for Nokia Ventures Organization and conducted a feasibility study on the future of online music distribution over wireless networks in China. He is also a founder of Artspages International AS, one of the leading online licensing portals of music and founder of Bach Technology AS in 2007.

Lots of excitement can be expected from the pitching session where 5 new music products and services from Garage48 Tallinn Music 2013 will be presented for assessment and comments by music industry players and potential investors. Two weeks before Tallinn Music Week conference Garage48 invited around one hundred software developers, designers, marketing professionals and visionaries to focus on creating new internet and mobile based entertainment and music products. The panel of judges includes Villu Arak (General Specifics), Mark Meharry (Music Glue), Chris Douridas (KCRW-FM, formerly iTunes), Mathieu Molinero (International Area Manager of Deezer) and Allan Martinson (Estonian Business Angels Network).

Conference panels also address publishing, regional cooperation, music export, manager’s role, investment, career planning and other relevant topics. As an initiative by Estonian Music Development Centre the Estonian music community has also set their minds on getting the music industry statistics right - to achieve this there is a dedicated round-table and a panel to follow, which includes international experts and best practices in other countries.

The conference program will wrap up with the traditional and entertaining „Check My Demo“ panel, where demos of the festival artists will get immediate feedback from experts and critics. The popular panel will be hosted by Erik Morna, head of music of Radio 2.

Tallinn Music Week 2013 takes place on April 4-6, 2013. The showcase festival of Estonian and regional talent and a music industry conference that gathers the region’s whole music industry in Tallinn during three days takes place for the fifth time. It aims to present the most exciting Estonian and regional talent to international music industry and press as well as to the local audiences, music companies and organizations. The conference takes place on 5-6 April in Nordic Hotel Forum Conference Center.

Seymour Stein and other American guests are invited to Tallinn with the support of Embassy of the United States of America.