Fred Davis, Justin Kalifowitz & Kerry Trainor discuss COVID-19 impact on the Artist and Label Services ecosystem

During a unique keynote discussion, The Raine Group’s Fred Davis, Downtown Music’s Justin Kalifowitz and SoundClound’s Kerry Trainor underline the role and offer concrete directions on the future of Artist and Label Services. Fred Davis, Justin Kalifowitz & Kerry Trainor are also questioning if COVID-19 impact on the Artist and Label Services ecosystem will be a break or an accelerator.

The conversation dives deep into this essential element of the music ecosystem helping artists release, promote and monetise their music around the world. Fred Davis, Justin Kalifowitz & Kerry Trainor also look at the rise of ‘direct artist’ services companies, and a whole host of other commercial models, allowing unsigned artists to have more choice and flexibility than ever before, offering them the opportunity to create their own virtual record label.

Fred Davis is a Partner at Raine. Since joining the firm in July 2014, Fred Davis has focused on both advising and investing across the global digital media sector for high growth and earlier stage companies, including SoundCloud, Spotify, AVL Digital (CD Baby), Amuse, Troy Carter’s Q&A, LA Reid’s HitCo and Fuga. Before co-founding CODE Advisors in 2010, Fred was a senior Partner of the leading Entertainment/New Media Law Firm of Davis Shapiro & Lewit. Fred is on the board of directors of SoundCloud, a Raine portfolio company.

Formerly an Executive Vice President at EMI Records, Fred has received the ACLU’s Bill of Rights Award and the UJA Music Visionary of the Year Award, and was a member of the board of directors for the 9/11 Fund. He received his BA from Tufts University in 1981 and his JD from Fordham Law in 1985.

WP Artists and label services

Justin Kalifowitz is founder and CEO of Downtown Music Holdings, an integrated music  company that owns, develops, and manages businesses with a vision for a more innovative and  equitable global music ecosystem.

Downtown manages millions of music copyrights across its portfolio  of companies, with a catalog that spans roughly 100 years of popular music, including music for film  and television, and the single largest independent sound recording catalog in the industry.  With operations across North America, Europe, Asia, Australia, and Latin  America, Downtown is the world’s leading provider of end-to-end services to artists, songwriters,  labels, music publishers and other rights holders.

A lifelong advocate for creators and the value of copyright, Kalifowitz has been featured in The Economist, The New York Times, The Guardian, Bloomberg Business Week, and National Public Radio, and as a presenter at Midem, SXSW, and the  World Copyright Forum. He is Vice President of the Board  of Directors for the National Music Publishers Association (NMPA) and served as an expert witness in  the 2017 U.S. Copyright Royalty Board rate court proceedings.

Kalifowitz has been named to ​ Variety’s 2019 New Leaders list, Billboard’s “30 Under 30, Crain’s New York Business “40 Under 40”, and is a past recipient of the Association of Independent Music Publishers  (AIMP) Indie Award.

Kerry Trainor is the Chief Executive Officer at SoundCloud. He is responsible for leading the strategic direction of the company and driving SoundCloud’s continued success in its ongoing mission to fuel the platform’s one-of-a-kind, creator-driven listener experience.

Prior to joining SoundCloud, Trainor was Chief Executive Officer at Vimeo, where he oversaw development of the video-sharing site into a leading global platform. Throughout his career, Trainor held roles at AOL, Huffington Post Media Group, founder of FlipGloss Media, and! Music. In addition to his professional roles, he currently serves as a Board Director for Fender Musical Instruments and a Board Advisor to The Artists Den.


What is Midem Music Talks about?

Midem Music Talks helps you face the main challenges and key trends shaping the future of the international music business via exclusive content from the Midem Digital Edition programme.

Every month, our conference team presents visionary conversations with the most respected decision makers of the global music industry to share insightful business tips, case studies, and technical solutions.

Listen to this Midem Music Talks on Deezer, Spotify and Apple Podcasts!



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Here’s a selection of the most insightful quotes or anecdotes from their discussion:

“This area we’re talking about is absolutely the fastest growing segment in the entire music industry,” he said. “It was practically nothing two or three years ago, and this year it will be, we estimate a $2bn sector, 10% of the entire music industry, growing at a 35 to 40 per cent rate year over year.” Fred Davis


“We’re watching markets that a few years ago had really very few independently distributed artists and everything was through the traditional system, growing at double and triple digit growth, which is fantastic to see.” Justin Kalifowitz


“On SoundCloud we have content from over 25 million creators who are reaching audiences around the world. Over 12 million of those creators get heard every month, which is in some ways to me the more powerful stat.” Kerry Trainor

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