Do musicians need corporate support to survive in the new Austin?

Do musicians need corporate support to survive in the new Austin?

Once a university city enticing to artists for its music scene, Austin has develop into a hub in current a long time for tech corporations, companies and startups. This inflow of high-paid staff has contributed to an increase in the price of dwelling, pushing the inventive class out.

But what if enterprise did extra to assist them keep?

Corporations can support native music in a number of methods. One means is by sponsoring an artist or giving them cash, merchandise or some mixture of the two. In return, the artist can symbolize the firm, and hopefully, elevate its model profile.

For Austin hip-hop artist J Soulja, who has labored with manufacturers like Swisher Sweets, sponsorships are the most popular route to take when it comes to funding. He says it is higher than coping with report corporations.

“I went to a couple of totally different A&Rs [artists and repertoire] relationship a hip-hop artist, like J Soulja, and being instructed, ‘No, I such as you, you are gifted, however I’m not going to give you a deal as a result of you do not have 10,000 followers’ on social media, he stated.

This need to be established and fashionable generally is a actuality examine for some artists. How are you able to acquire followers if you do not have the monetary backing? In J Soulja’s thoughts, sponsorships are extra like actual partnerships; are extra private.

“You know, sponsorship is a lot more – ‘Hey, let me get to know you. Can you do interviews? What’s your personality like?’” he stated. “In my situation, I can’t say for anyone else, but for me it felt a lot more open.”

Corporate support will also be simply investing cash in musicians. PNC Bank is doing simply that.

“It was all about us sitting down and thinking: What is authentic about the city? What are the passion points of the people who work for us? What we’re going to do is really connect us to the Austin community,” stated Dillan Knudson, regional president of PNC Bank.

Dillan Knudson, regional president of PNC Bank, determined that supporting local music was a way to connect the bank with the community.

Dillan Knudson, regional president of PNC Bank, decided that supporting native music was a means to join the financial institution with the neighborhood.

The reply was easy for PNC: Support Austin’s music scene.

Knudson and Hugo Lagarda, a former director of buyer and neighborhood relations for the financial institution, had been tasked with launching the PNC model in Austin final 12 months.

Lagarda’s technique was about the first precept of promoting: Connect with one thing folks actually love and care about.

“And so the passion point of music is, in my opinion, the most powerful because it’s so versatile,” he stated.

Sponsorships could be useful for each the artist and the company, and when PNC determined to make investments in Austin’s music scene, it had a spotlight.

“What really came to life was that it’s all about the musician. Like, what can we do to help the musician? How do we support the musician? How do we help them with livable wages?” Knudson stated. “And then how will we do this? Because we’ve to be a financial institution too, proper? … People depend on us to be their monetary companions.”

PNC determined to make investments in Austin’s music in 3 ways. First, it supplies grants and sponsorship {dollars} to non-profit organizations that support musicians, akin to HAAM, Austin Music Foundation and Black Fret.

Second, the financial institution supplies monetary training to musicians about issues like first-time residence shopping for, credit score rating administration, and small enterprise planning.

And third, PNC was dedicated to creating efficiency alternatives for Austin musicians. It hires Austin musicians to play occasions and encourages different organizations to sponsor dwell music. Also created a residency program at PNC Plaza at ACL Live at the Moody Theater. Each month, a unique artist who’s a part of the Austin Music Foundation’s artist growth program will get to play three reveals at PNC Plaza earlier than that night’s nationwide tour.

PNC’s principal aim was to enhance its model consciousness in Austin, and up to now, Largarda says, it has been fairly profitable.

“In October of last year, a quarter of Austinites knew who PNC was, and coming into April, we’re almost half of the city that knows the brand, which is just unprecedented growth in brand awareness,” stated he. “And so yeah, it’s a testament to the music, the passion point of the music, I’d say.”

Find out extra about corporate support for Austin’s music scene in the newest episode of Pause/Play. Listen utilizing the participant above.

Copyright 2022 KUT 90.5. To see extra, go to KUT 90.5.

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