Magazine article Variety

EDM Boogies to Its Own Beat

Magazine article Variety

EDM Boogies to Its Own Beat

Article excerpt

Market for live biz explodes thanks to distinct culture, hot DJs; crossover mojo beckons

Is EDM the future? That was the big topic at the Intl. Music Summit in Ibiza, the kingpins of dance music. Or as Shelly Finkel informed us, ECM, "Electronic Music Culture," which is what they call it at SFX. Which is going deep. Like Live Nation, which just bought half of Insomniac, they don't want to be left out.

The most fascinating panel at IMS was at the start where statistics were presented on the growth of EDM.

Information, it's the essence of the modern world. But not the music business. The music business is built on B.S. Smoke and mirrors. Otherwise known as lies. That gig that sold out, it didn't. That album that sold millions, it didn't. And if a statistic is visible, like Twitter followers, they employ companies to muck them up, drive them up, so they ultimately become meaningless. Tell the label how many Facebook likes you've got, they don't care. Online statistics are a way for nobodies at home to feel glorious. It's a way for those not good enough at sports to get a trophy. But if you think amassing followers online is the key to long term success, you've never heard of Tila Tequila.

So, according to the report, "the largest EDM clubs in Vegas make over $600m (a year), with two huge additions arriving in 2013."

XS does over $80 mil. Marquee, almost as much. TAO, a bit over $60 mil.

Heard of these places? Probably not. And that's just the point. As above-ground as EDM has become, it's still underground. Because it doesn't appeal to the mainstream media. The talent isn't made up of photogenic paraders, there's no drama and the reporters hate the music. Which is why EDM is burgeoning. It's owned by the young. It's a perfect medium for today, not dependent upon recordings and based on the unstealable live experience.

The global EDM Industry is now worth more than $4.5 billion. Wasn't the music business supposed to be dead?

Well, it just got reinvented.

As for that $4.5 billion, the lion's share, $2.5 billion, is live, with brand sponsorship and production hardware and software at $75 million and recorded music at $1.25 billion. In other words, if you're looking to recorded music to make your nut, you're looking in the wrong place.

SFX has it right, it is a culture. …

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