@MPIGNY- Summer 2013 - (Page 9)

#feature CAN I USE SPOTIFY AT EVENTS? BY ANDY SHARPE SONG DIVISION I love music. I have a music business, and I’m a musician. But for the last decade, I’ve spent less and less time actually listening to music. There are two reasons for this: having a daughter and not needing a car in New York. Then I discovered Spotify, and I started listening to music again. Full disclosure: I love Spotify. And if you’re a meeting professional, I think you’ll love it, too. What is Spotify? It’s a subscriptionbased music streaming service that gives you immediate access to almost any song on the planet. True, The Beatles and AC/DC aren’t on there ... yet. But pretty much everything else is. Feeling in the mood for some Sinatra? A quick search on the app, pick the song you want, put your phone in the iPod dock and Frank comes crooning out of the speakers. You’ll never buy a CD again. Subscription-based music services such as Spotify are a boon to meeting professionals because: 1) You have “on demand” access to 20 million songs that are stored in the cloud for just $10 per month, and 2) It’s easy to create a playlist for your next event or use one of the thousands of playlists already in existence. Spotify is my preference because they’ve got the biggest music catalogue, but they’re not alone in the market. Other providers include Rhapsody and Rdio, Google has launched a new service and Apple has something brewing. Spotify is different from Pandora, which is a personalized streaming radio service where you pick the style of music you want to listen to, e.g., classic rock, then it chooses the songs for you. It’s of less interest to meeting professionals because you can’t select the exact songs you want played at specific moments throughout your event. There is a free version of Spotify; however, it comes with advertising and limits on how much you can listen. For $10 a month, the premium subscription gives you unlimited access to higher bitrate streaming (i.e., better quality sound), removes all advertising and lets you stream off your mobile device. So you’ll never spend more than $120 a year on music (unless you need that Beatles track or the monthly subscription fee goes up). And no longer will music files take up valuable space on your hard drive. Spotify’s huge music collection lives in the cloud and all of it is available to you on demand. You just need the app on your computer or phone to access it. But what if I don’t have Internet access or mobile reception in the ballroom where my event will be held? For premium subscribers there is an offline option – here’s where it gets very interesting for meeting professionals. If you want to play Elvis Costello’s “Pump It Up” at your next sales kick-off, you select the song, hit the offline button and it’s downloaded to your mobile device or computer. Obviously, this takes up some disk space, but you don’t need your entire music collection on there. You just need what you’re going to play at your next event. If you stop paying your monthly subscription, the files on your computer will disappear. Spotify has been a valuable event tool for the team at Song Division. Our very own Nathan Horne was responsible for the entertainment at MPIGNY’s recent Genie Awards, and any 1920s-themed music that wasn’t coming directly from a live band was straight off our “Gatsby” playlist. It’s been so useful that we’ve added Spotify to the free playlists resource on our website, along with the existing iTunes options. But can you legally play music from Spotify at events? Yes. Both Spotify and the performing rights organization ASCAP have confirmed that music can be played from Spotify with the proper licenses in place. Meaning, as long as you have the licenses you would normally need for music performed by a live band, DJ or coming off a CD or mp3, you’re covered. If you’re not sure about what licenses are required for your event, Google the article “Music Licensing at Events” by the meeting and event industry legal guru John S. Foster, Esq., CHME. Even if you never have to choose music for a meeting, a music streaming service is worth a spin. It might just open up the beautiful, soul-restoring universe of music for you if it happens to have faded from your busy life. @ Andy Sharpe is the founder of Song Division. Learn more at www.songdivision.com, or contact him at andy@songdivision.com. info@mpigny.org 9 http://www.songdivision.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of @MPIGNY- Summer 2013

President's Message
Happenings
10 Powerful iPad Strategies for Meetings & Events
Revolutionized By Technology
Spotify At Events
Introducing The 2013-2014 MPIGNY Board of Directors
2013 MPIGNY Genie Awards
Member Spotlight
Destination New Jersey
The Summit
New Members
Can You Spot Yourself?

@MPIGNY- Summer 2013

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