A2IM Celebrates One Year Anniversary Of Indie Label Organization
July Fourth marked the first anniversary of The American Association of Independent Music (A2IM), who celebrated their milestone on Monday, June 26, at Buddakan in New York City. The A2IM anniversary blow-out was hosted by Koch Entertainment Distribution and well-attended by some of the biggest names in the indie music sector.
Altogether, representatives of over 200 independent companies (labels, management, legal, digital services, information technology, distributors, manufacturers etc) attended. The organization, which represents the collective interests of the independent record labels, hit the ground running last summer and has had a remarkable year of accomplishments (recapped below) and has outlined the next set of demanding issues for the upcoming year.
Acting President Don Rose touched on some topics from the aggressive agenda that A2IM plans to tackle in the upcoming year (including wireless downloads, video-on-demand, and satellite radio recording devices). These areas all present obstacles and opportunities that require the indie's focused attention and that A2IM is uniquely situated to address. Currently, A2IM is the sole label voice calling for strict enforcement of anti-payola laws and pushing to open the access and programming consideration process.
"The focused efforts of A2IM and the collective authority of our membership has allowed us to make great strides in leveling the playing field for the indies and make our presence felt," says Acting President Don Rose. "They said it couldn't be done, but we've helped to create a community for record labels to unite."
Over the past year, A2IM has made its presence felt in the following ways:
* A2IM challenged and redefined the perception that the indie sector comprises 18% of the music industry. The actual market-share figure, based on retail sales, is a whopping 28% - larger than any one of the major record companies individually.
*Six weeks after A2IM launched, Apple increased iTunes per-download- pay rate by 7.5% - going from 65 cents to 70 cents paid to indie labels per song.
*Called for fair and uniform change in the relationships between radio and record labels, and is currently consulting with the FCC on a proposed set of universal guidelines.
*Established the A2IM American Independent Pavilion at MIDEM 2006, allowing many indie labels to attend the premiere international music convention for the first time ever.
A2IM seeks to serve the indie music community as a unified voice representing a sector that comprises nearly 30% of the music industry's market share in the US. The organization will represent the Indies' interests in the marketplace, in the media, on Capitol Hill, and as part of the global music community. A2IM will be headquartered in New York, and seeks to establish a legislative presence in Washington, DC.
The organization's board of directors is comprise of the following: Beggars Group CEO Lesley Bleakley, Thirsty Ear President Peter Gordon, TVT Records president Steve Gottlieb, Roadrunner Records senior VP/GM Doug Keogh, Bar/None owner Glenn Morrow, Lookout Records co-owner Molly Neuman, Tommy Boy Records owner Tom Silverman, Slim Moon founder Kill Rock Stars, Amaechi Uzoigwe co-founder Definitive Jux.
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