Telling the future

October 1, 2009

Twenty years ago, the “Future of Music” was compact discs (remember those?). Ten years ago, the “Future” was all about mp3s, Napster, and peer-to-peer file sharing. Curious about the future of music today? Aren’t we all.

The Future of Music Coalition is hosting a policy summit this weekend in various venues across campus, tackling the big questions about the music industry in the digital world. The Summit will examine issues in the music industry, ranging from new music business models and policy decisions, to the impact of technology, to how to look at copyright laws in the digital age, according to Michael Bracy (COL ‘90), Policy Director of the FMC.

The speakers show the many players in the music industry, and include policy figures—such as Senator Al Franken (D-MN), Federal Communications Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski, and Congressman Mike Doyle (D-PA)—as well as musical artists like Mike Mills of R.E.M. and Hank Shocklee of Public Enemy.

“Some really fantastic musicians will speak from personal experience about issues that concern the music community,” Bracy said.

In addition, there will be a film screening of Copyright Criminals on Sunday night at 5:00 PM in the ICC Auditorium. Copyright Criminals investigates the culture of music sampling, and copyright reform for musicians involved in remixing and sampling tracks.

Because of its partnership with the Department of Performing Arts, the FMC Policy Summit hopes to involve Georgetown students in discussions throughout the conference. “We’ve worked very hard to find as many connection points as possible with campus. We’re trying to set up side meetings for the artists to work directly with the music theory students,” Bracy said. “It’s our hopes that we’ll be able to hit the ground running next year and hopefully host it on campus again and make it even more effective.”

For those more interested in music than discussion, the FMC will be hosting a benefit concert for Sweet Home New Orleans, an organization working to revitalize New Orlean’s music scene, at the Rock and Roll Hotel on Monday night. Featured artists include Bonerama with Wayne Kramer of MC5, Erin McKeown, and Martín Perna of Ocote Soul Sounds. Student tickets to the event cost $10 and include busing to and from the Rock and Roll Hotel.

The FMC Policy Summit is October 4th to 6th and preregistration is available online at www.futureofmusic.org. Contact Lauren Delaloye at ldelaloye@gmail.com to purchase student tickets for the Sweet Home New Orleans benefit concert.

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