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Mentor: Derek Sivers Location:
DEREK SIVERS BIO:
(written by Ariel Publicity)
- Derek Sivers is our boy-next-door marketing genius, renaissance boy. He
- juggles music, marketing, and internet into a blur so that you can't see
- the individual ingredients, and uses it to show musicians how they can take
- advantages of all the changes going on in the music-internet explosion.
- Derek Sivers graduated at the top of his class at Berklee College of Music,
- then moved to New York City and was a staff producer/engineer/taperoom-boy
- at Warner Brothers for three years. In his three years at Warners, he used
- his vacation days to tour the world as the guitarist for Japan's most
- famous composer, Ryuichi Sakamoto. All the while, working weekends as the
- featured performer/musician of The Touring Mime Circus.
- He quit Warner Brothers in 1992 when it "got too comfortable" and chose the
- challenge of being a full-time musician/entrepreneur ever since.
- After putting together his band called Hit Me, Derek decided to start
- touring the college market, and was soon hired by over 400 colleges in
- three years. When the Hit Me CD was released in 1995, it was put into
- rotation on over 300 college radio stations around the country, and Hit Me
- soon toured not only the northeast USA, but a successful European tour as
- well. His music was used on a handful of TV shows and even a feature film.
- Although Hit Me sold 3000 CDs at shows, none of the online record stores
- (cdnow, etc.) would sell it without a major distribution deal. So Derek
- started selling it online through his own website and asked a dozen
- musician friends if they wanted him to take care of their online orders,
- too. Soon friends told friends, and CD Baby was born.
- In only 2 years, CD Baby became the 2nd largest seller of independent CDs
- on the web, 2nd only to Amazon. Yet CD Baby still stays fiercely
- independent, refusing all advertising and investors, and selling only
- independent artists' CDs.
- Derek Sivers has taken the role of music marketing mentor, asked to speak
- on panels at most major music business conferences. (Even Napster asked
- him to go to court on their behalf in their big trial against the major
- labels.) His website, MarketingYourMusic.com will be turned into a book
- for independent musicians soon.