Hello songwriter friends:

Kristin from the Future of Music Coalition here.

This is a complicated time for musicians and indie labels. The internet and digital distribution has made it more possible than ever for more musicians to create, promote and sell their music.  But this has also opened the floodgates to everyone. Now we're struggling against a sea of bands and musicians, and we're all competing for diminishing attention spans, and slimmer wallets. Musicians should be asking: Where should I focus my resources? What are some successful strategies? And what structural and policy changes could impact my career, and the creative class in general?

That's why we want to invite you to take part in the Future of Music Policy Summit, set for October 4-6, 2009 in Washington, DC. This is going to be our 8th Policy Summit and, frankly, our best yet. http://futureofmusic.org/events/future-music-policy-summit-2009

Discounted registration for JP Folks members:
member code: JPFOLKS

On Sunday, October 4 from 12:00 PM - 5:00 PM, the programming will focus on practical tips for today’s working musicians of all genres. We’ll start with a tour of New Business Models and talk about how each of them are (or are not) compensating musicians. Then we’ll learn how musicians are successfully using Social Networking tools to enhance their careers and build their fan base. After that, it’s time for a Policy Primer that will bring musicians up to speed on the legislative issues that are impacting their careers. Throughout the day, FMC’s HINT coordinator, Alex Maiolo, will be on hand to provide free, private, personalized advice to musicians without health insurance. The day will close with a screening of Copyright Criminals, a stunning documentary about the sample license clearance process that is debuting at the Toronto Film Festival in September and will be shown on PBS soon. When the day wraps up, it’s off to our traditional Pho Dinner!

On Monday, October 5, join us for a day’s worth of panels featuring some of the most influential and successful participants in the worlds of music, law, technology and policy. We’ll start with a conversation about how some of today’s biggest musicians are recapturing control of their copyrights, and striking deals on their own. We’ll also take a look the sample license clearance process, what we learned in the 10 year period following the introduction of Napster, and talk about whether ISPs and other internet services should shoulder any of the burden in compensating musicians in the future.

On Tuesday, October 6, we’ll dedicate the morning to short presentations by or conversations with some of today’s most compelling and engaged players in the music-technology space. Then, after lunch, we’ll break into small groups to brainstorm about some of the issues presented in the morning, and to discuss the “Future of…” many different facets of our community: Metadata, Storage, Music Journalism, Artists as Social Change Agents and more.

We have some amazing panelists and speakers confirmed:

Senator Al Franken (D-MN)
Dave Allen from Gang of Four and Pampelmoose
Helen Bruner Producer, Songwriter, and Grammy-nominated artist, Phil’erzy Productions
David Carson General Counsel, U.S. Copyright Office
Bertis Downs Advisor, R.E.M.
Daniel Ek Founder and CEO, Spotify
Jordan Hirsch Executive Director, Sweet Home New Orleans
Ariel Hyatt Founder and Owner, Ariel Cyber PR
Vijay Iyer jazz pianist
Greg Kot Columnist, Chicago Tribune
Wayne Kramer Musician, MC5
Alex Maiolo HINT Program Coordinator, Future of Music Coalition
Brian Message, co-manager of Radiohead
Charlie McEnerney Founder and Producer, Well-Rounded Radio
Mac McCaughan Superchunk and Merge Records
Mike Mills R.E.M.
Tim Quirk VP of Music Programming, Rhapsody and member of Too Much Joy
Erin Potts Air Traffic Control/Artist Activism
Paul Rapp Drummer for Blotto and attorney
Ian Rogers CEO, TopSpin
John Strohm Associate Attorney and formerly of The Blake Babies
Kristin Thomson Education Director, Future of Music Coalition
Marcy Rauer Wagman Associate Professor, Drexel University; CEO and Founder, MAD Dragon UNLTD
Emily White Partner, Whitesmith Entertainment
Brian Zisk Co-founder, Collecta; Executive Producer, SanFran MusicTech Summit

...and many more! Check out the details here:

Registration is $199 for all three days, but we can offer Just Plain Folks members a 20% discount!  Go to this page and use the member code JPFOLKS

And, as always, we have a limited number of musicians' scholarships. If you fill out the form here, registration is only $10. But act fast: we only have about 40 left.

We hope to see a lot of JP Folks members as this event, so sign up and spread the word today.