Our Avid Connect 2015 event was a huge success, with over 1,000 media and creative professionals from around the world in attendance. In case you missed it, here’s a recap of the three audio breakout sessions that took place, plus links to watch the entire sessions at your leisure in our Avid Customer Association (ACA) video library.
The Future of Audio Production and Distribution Business Models
- Junior Sanchez—producer, DJ, artist, remixer, and record executive
- Maureen Droney—senior executive director, Grammy Producers & Engineers Wing
- Rich Holmes—director of product management (Pro Tools), Avid
This forward-looking discussion focused on how the current music business models are changing in regard to the production, performance, distribution, and licensing of music and audio assets. Our three guest speakers discussed the challenges that professionals today are facing—from the process of creation all the way through monetization—and how all of the steps in this process can be optimized.
Junior Sanchez highlighted changes he has seen in the ways artists are finding work, stating that social media has made a huge impact on the way artists collaborate. “With social media, artists now take communicative steps upon themselves and don’t rely on managerial resources to talk with labels or other artists. We make things happen. Outside of the social media realm, this concept was difficult.”
Rich Holmes explained that through the Artist Community, Avid is working to create a platform that nurtures this type of communication between media professionals. As an upcoming new social media platform, the Artist Community will enable collaboration on a global level, making the process easier than ever. Of course, this means more and more files will be transferred to more and more locations, making security a major concern. This led to a discussion about security when sharing files.
“There are so many different ways to monetize [music] today. There has been a paradigm switch from physical products to downloads and now to subscription-based streaming models, which is appearing to be a trend worldwide.”
– Junior Sanchez, Producer, DJ, Artist, Remixer, and Record Producer
Changes in how people consume media were also discussed. Junior noted, “There are so many different ways to monetize [music] today. There has been a paradigm switch from physical products to downloads and now to subscription-based streaming models, which is appearing to be a trend worldwide.”
Being able to offer the best sound quality to as many consumers as possible is also a challenge. Rich stated that one of Avid’s goals is to make this process as easy as possible for artists to ensure that the content they distribute to multiple platforms is as good as it can be in all of those places, enabling artists to spend more time focusing on what they love doing—creating.
This brought up a discussion about how current music legislation is not reflective of what is happening in the real world. While distribution is getting easier, the way artists are getting paid is getting harder.
“As things have changed, the music industry’s ways of payment has not kept up,” Maureen Droney stated. “One of the reasons I am working with Avid is because they are showing an interest in helping to fix problems with the tracking and travel of metadata. This recognition is important for creators to find work through credibility and make money.”
Collaboration Workflows for Post & Pro Mixing
- Person of Interest (CBS) audio post team
- David Gould—director of audio content solutions, Dolby
- Pro audio marketing and product managers from Avid
In this session, the post-production sound crew from CBS’s hit TV show Person of Interest discussed how they use Pro Tools | HDX systems in an all “in-the-box” mixing workflow. They shared their excitement about the Avid Cloud Collaboration features coming to Pro Tools 12, stating that from a workflow standpoint, a lot of tedious file management is involved due to the sheer number of fixes and additions that come in as the picture changes during the mix, meaning less time for mixing and creativity. Cloud Collaboration will solve this challenge, offering a much more efficient process to manage files and fixes.
Avid’s Pro Mixing product managers then revealed several new releases on the roadmap this year for control surfaces. They discussed the upcoming version 2.0 software for Pro Tools | S6, which introduces many new features and enhancements, as well as a new S6 Joystick Module for surround panning. And they unveiled a new free iOS app that will enable you to mix and control EUCON apps, such as Pro Tools, using an iPad, generating great excitement in the room.
Lastly, David Gould from Dolby shared information about Dolby Atmos updates and announced Dolby’s enhanced Connectivity partnership with Avid, stating, “We are pleased to announce a partnership between Dolby and Avid that is committed to streamlining the Dolby Atmos workflow in Pro Tools.” This was followed by a question and answer discussion led by the audience and addressed to all presenters.
Live Performance, Production, and Distribution
- Greg Price—FOH engineer (Black Sabbath, Ozzy Osbourne) and cofounder of Diablo Digital
- Robert Scovill—FOH engineer (Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers) and senior market specialist, Avid
- Sheldon Radford—director of product management (consoles and control surfaces), Avid
In this session, our special guests discussed the rapid evolution and increasing importance of recording and managing live performance content for artists and organizations, and how live sound fits into the Avid Everywhere vision.
They talked about how the technology built into existing VENUE products provide powerful and intelligent interconnectivity between both live mixing and audio recording systems. This makes it quick and easy for engineers to record every performance into Pro Tools and keep track of each song and show through Pro Tools metadata management. Two workflows were compared on screen during the presentation. They first showed a traditional method of setting up a Pro Tools session. Then they showed the same process using the VENUE Link feature, which ties VENUE mixing and Pro Tools recording together, saving engineers over an hour’s worth of work.
One important takeaway from this session is that live sound is a content creator. By being able to capture live performances, you capture history and moments in time. And more and more artists and record labels rely on these recordings to generate additional revenue. It’s not just about mixing in the moment—there’s now plenty more mixing that occurs after the show has ended.
Greg Price talked about the unique challenges involved in recording live performances and what drove him to start Diablo Digital, a company focused on providing live recording systems for tours, installations, festivals, and broadcast. Greg said that he saw the opportunity to record digital audio when VENUE was first introduced into the market. At the time he thought, “How can we leverage and monetize this content into the new norm of worldwide content distribution?” This is what led to Greg seeing Avid as a “true partner in media delivery.”
The three discussed several live sound capture challenges, including ways to manage all of the information being recording, and the fundamentals behind the Avid Everywhere vision and what it means to the world of live sound.
One of the goals of Avid Everywhere, they explained, is to shorten the time it takes to go from creation to delivery, and Avid has helped make this a reality by embracing open standards, enabling integration, and removing complexity. They also provided insight into how live sound plays on the Avid MediaCentral Platform and then gave the audience an exclusive look at the recently-announced VENUE | S6L live mixing system.
* You can view all three sessions above in their entirety—along with all of our video, media enterprise, and community breakout sessions—in the Avid Customer Association (ACA) Video Library, accessible from the Avid Customer Association Portal. Not a member of the ACA? Register here to join now and receive instant access to the ACA Portal, plus monthly updates about Avid and the media industry and access to exclusive content before anyone else.