Musician Entrepreneur Conference
The Musician Entrepreneur Conference is an annual event held every October during Small Business Week. The conference is free to attend and is targeted towards independent local musicians who want to develop their music business skills. The Musician Entrepreneur Conference is a priority for the Hamilton Music Advisory Team (HMAT) and is supported by the Musician Conference Working Group.
2022 Musician Entrepreneur Conference
The 2022 Musician’s Conference will be offered in two parts, online workshops and an Electronic Press Kit (EPK) event.
Virtual workshops/discussion panels happening during National Business Week October 17 to 22, 2022.
Session 1: Next Level
Date & time: October 17 at 7 pm
Duration: 60 minutes (one-on-one interview)
Hamilton has created super stars in the music industry in almost every genre, technical position, and promotional role. The Next Level talks will bring one of these leaders to the forefront to talk about their career in a one-on-one interview. We’ll go beyond the surface of what we hear on their albums or see in their social media to learn more about their philosophy, current approach to the industry, and what they see on the horizon for Hamilton’s scene.
Host: Jamie Tennant, CFMU
Artist: Nabi Sue Bersche (Ellevator)
Register: Register online
Session 2: Keeping it together
Date & time: October 18 at 7 pm
Duration: 45 mins, with 15 minutes for questions
Working in any group can be challenging, but let’s be honest – adding being highly creative and the potential perils of the music industry doesn’t make it any easier. From simply finding the time, to managing mental health, the stress of travel and late nights – keeping a band together, productive and respectful is a chore. This session will bring you three musicians with extensive experience in the group dynamics. We’ll discuss their successes and failures, tricks they’ve learned to keep it together, and explore ways you help develop a stellar working relationship.
Panelists: Aleef Mehdi (Nezqwik); Jocelyn McIntosh (The Beelays); and Brad Germain (Golden Feather).
Session 3: Breaking Out
Date & time: October 19 at 7 pm
Duration: 45 mins. with 15 minutes for questions
What does it take to get gigs in other cities, at larger venues, and touring for the first time? Now that you have some experience with smaller gigs; learn from musicians and venue booker on how to expand your gig opportunities/experience and further break out when it comes to performing on or at a different stage.
Panelists: Matt Paxton (Bridgeworks / Musician); Nim Agalawatte (Basement Revovler), and Chrisy Hurn-Morrison, (Basement Revolver).
Electronic Press Kit Event
An afternoon or evening in-person live ‘demo’ show happening on September 18 where up to six (6) musicians/bands will receive free, tangible assets (i.e. several EPK tools) to help with their business and career growth. Musicians/bands must apply online (application and criteria below) by September 6 at 5pm. The successful applicants will be notified via email.
The EPK event will take place at The Casbah (music venue) and provide each selected musician/band with the following:
- Professional live performance video recording of 3 songs (max)
- Professional live audio recording of 3 songs (max)
- A digital stage plot created in consultation with technical staff
- Professional live performance photography
- A live performance critique by a local music professional
Review the previous Musician Entrepreneur Conferences
The 2021 Musician Entrepreneur Conference took place virtually from October 18 to 22, 2021. The panel discussions were presented live on zoom and streamed to Facebook @HamOntMusic. Recordings and are available to watch below. Topics covered included knowing your worth as a musician, cowriting and collaboration, authentic branding, mental health supports for musicians; and getting back on stage. Watch the videos from this conference on YouTube.
Thank you to the musicians and music industry reps who spoke at the 2021 conference.
The 2020 Musician Entrepreneur Conference took place virtually from October 19 to 23, 2020. The panel discussions were recorded and are still available to watch below. Topics covered included the “nuts and bolts” of planning an album, grants available to musicians, getting ready to record at home or in the studio, marketing on a shoestring budget, and audience engagement after your album has been released.
Planning Your Next Release
The first panel discussion of the 2020 Hamilton Musician Entrepreneur Conference brought together industry experts and local musicians to talk about the album planning process. Whether you have just started a project or in the middle of one, our speakers provide tips on how to organize your time, your money, and your work to make the best release.
Grants for Musicians
A conversation about funding available to Hamilton musicians. The conversation starts with grant officers from FACTOR, the City of Hamilton's City Enrichment Fund, and Canada Council for the Art's Explore and Create Program sharing information about their grant programs.
Getting Ready to Record
A conversation with local musicians and recording studio reps about recording in studio and at home. Get some advice on how best to prepare for studio time if you are making the leap to a professional studio setting and some tips you can use when recording at home.
Marketing with a Small Budget
A conversation intended for emerging or self-produced musicians who do not have a label or marketing team backing them with a budget. Speakers talk about free or low-cost marketing strategies with a focus on social media content.
My Album is Done. Now What?
A conversation on what to do after your album is released. What is the best way to get your music out there and keep promoting your work? The speakers continue the marketing conversation and talk about ways to promote your album, build your audience and start to see a revenue stream from your music.