Split Works laoban and China Music Radar editor emeritus Archie Hamilton chats promoter economics and hand-carrying gear all through Asia with Slink Rat, aka Xiao Zhong for Other Sounds, Singapore’s leading music news and information website. You can read the whole interview right here.
There have been a couple of half decent articles on the Chinese music scene kicking around the wires recently. We thought we’d point you to a couple:
First up, Andrew Chin over at City Weekend does a retrospective of big international shows in China in advance of two in two days (Elton John on Friday in Shanghai and Jennifer Lopez in the same venue the following night).
From Wham, to John Denver, to the Rolling Stones to Sonic Youth to Linkin Park to the present day, the article features interviews from Adam Wilkes, Archie Hamilton, Steve Sybesma and John Cappo, it makes a nice trip down memory lane for nostalgia hunters, while demonstrating how far we’ve come.
You can read that one right over HERE.
Disclaimer, the one of the authors of this blog was interviewed for this article.
At a different end of the spectrum, Morgan Short of Smart Beijing and previously of Shanghai based band Boys Climbing Ropes baits Dan Shapiro of The Fever Machine into telling us what he really thinks about the music scene in China. Both of these brohammers have been here for over 5 years and have spent most of that time immersed in the music scene, so the interview is a good one for those of you interested in being in bands here. You can read that little gem HERE.
The final one for today looks in depth at the present and future of music access in China, pointing to the fact that more and more of the big players are introducing options for the consumers to actually pay for content. The model seems to be that streaming will continue to be free, while downloading would cost. The author makes some pretty broad claims without backing anything up. The Chinese consumer has never paid for content before – it’s going to take a pretty significant breakthrough in simplicity or usability to make it happen
Read this one HERE
Archie Hamilton, a major contributor to this site (and MD of the Chinese concert promoter and festival owner Split Works) is proud and honored to be speaking at the inaugural Transition China conference, hosted by the Entrepreneur’s Organization. His chosen topic is the Anatomy of a Chinese Music festival, and he is in quite illustrious company, so if you can afford the ticket , come along.
Kaiser Kuo and Jeremy Goldkorn have been running the excellent Sinica Podcast for a while now, running the gamut of all things China: economics, politics, the internet and… the music industry. We were honored to be speaking in such illustrious company – Split Works laoban Archie (and oftentimes author of this tome) and economist/ music label impresario Michael Pettis joined Kaiser and Jeremy for an hour of opinions, product plugs and mutual love.
Check it out in its entirety HERE
Another little cockle warmer in advance of 2011. This time, Beijing based post punk band ReTros, in our opinion one of the most consistent and high quality bands to come out of China this decade, have been invited by legendary British post punker Gang of Four to join them for a week of their Australian tour. You can see this announcement as well as an announcement of their first 2011 show at their Douban page.
This is really great news – Chinese bands are finally getting the recognition they deserve internationally. As we said in our responses to the Shanghai Grammy’s
Song of the Year
I think this counts as local. Earlier in the year, I was listening to my favorite dubstep show on Radio1 out of the UK, and this tune pops up
Kode9 & The Spaceape feat.ChaCha-Time Patrol
Honestly, I just thought it was fucking mental that our very own ChaCha was on one of the biggest, most influential radio stations in the world on one of the coolest shows on a track with one of the best producers/ dj’s/ label bosses around. People talk about Chinese artists breaking in the West – when will it happen? Who will it be? Well mega pop lovers, it’s already happening in the underground and it’s spreading. And it’s exciting, get me?
We repeat this sentiment wholeheartedly for ReTros. More in 2011 please…
Happy New Year everyone!
Archie Hamilton of China based promoter Split Works waxes lyrical on China’s emerging (and not always linear) music industry.
In the first interview, Archie speaks at the second TEDxShanghai. His topic:
Is the music industry a proxy for the wider global economy: can China’s leapfrog the developed world?
Watch for yourself and let us know if you agree or not.
Recently, our partner company Split Works were asked to speak at TEDxShanghai, the independently organized TED event that is in its second year here in Shanghai. Archie Hamilton spoke about “the Chinese Music Industry as a proxy for developed vs developing economies: the Leapfrog Effect”.
To compensate for the somewhat dry nature of the talk, we worked with TEDx head honcho Richard Hsu on bringing two awesomely next level musicians to play over the course of the day. Jeff Lang, Australian blues legend was coming off the back of a hugely successful 7 city tour of China. Xiao He is one of the most talented and experimental artists plying a trade in China at the moment. His label, Maybe Mars, describes him so
Except for a very few special performances with Glorious Pharmacy, today Xiao He only plays solo performances. Calling these multi-faceted improvised performances “Free Folk”, as much to express his anarchic playfulness as to suggest the total freedom which he approaches musical instrumentation, vocal performances and stylistic experimentation, he has become the inventor of a deeply weird and immensely moving style of music, mystical and surreal, which abruptly veers from the plaintive cries of Mongolian or Western Chinese music to the barbed and sometimes childlike humor of the avant garde. Complementing his stylistic creativity is a wholly unique way of playing acoustic guitar, loops, synthesizers and any other instrument that catches his fancy.
If you don’t do anything else, check out at the end of Xiao He’s performance where he addresses the crowd in a completely made up language. Priceless.
Thanks to both these amazing artists and to the TEDx team for their hard work making this all worthwhile.
Archie Hamilton, Jeff Land and Xiao He at TedXShanghai
Archie Hamilton, Jeff Land and Xiao He at TedXShanghai
Archie Hamilton, MD of Split Works (Shanghai and Beijing based concert promoters) gets a full page in the UK’s Telegraph. Expounding on the difficulties of growing a music industry in such a new territory, it’s worth a quick skim.
Check out the full article HERE, and check out Archie speaking in person at TEDxShanghai this weekend at the DCC. Split Works are bringing Jeff Lang and Xiao He to TEDx to provide challenging conversation through music. Good times.
[disclaimer: Split Works manage the China Music Radar site]
From tomorrow, this here Radar is gonna be on planes, trains and automobiles for 10 days. We are hugely honored to be speaking at SXSW (you can find the event details HERE – the topic is “Can China build a better music business?” and it will be at the Austin Convention Centre at 2pm on Saturday, March 20th). This panel is not to be confused with the “How to access the China music market” by a guy that is basically offering to submit your album to the Ministry of Culture for US$600. Tip: find a friendly Chinese intern to do it for much, much less…
Anyway, there is a LOT of stuff from the last 12 months that we haven’t gotten around to posting, so if we have time, we will go back over some of the things that missed the cut.
Enovate, the Shanghai based research and insights firm, asked our opinions regarding music in China. A key insight from 2009 and a prediction for 2010. You can read the full article covering the spectrum HERE, and you can read what we had to say on this here site.