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Pipeline Think Tank Summarizes Findings at Industry Event

Belmont’s Pipeline project, an entertainment industry solutions think tank, celebrated its final summer event Monday night at an industry gathering at Regions bank where the nine-member team summarized their progress to date. In addition to publicly thanking supporters and mentors from the music industry and Belmont–including Assistant Professor of Entertainment Industry Studies Sarita Stewart, who oversaw the project–the Pipeline team also presented a five-minute video of their findings

An initiative of the Curb College of Entertainment and Music Business (CEMB), the Pipeline project indentified Belmont’s best and brightest students and charged them with developing cutting edge concepts and solutions to influence the entertainment and music industries through their creative capital.

The team was faced with exploring and researching the music industry to identify the biggest need and from there find a solution. Pipeline participant Ross Hill, a sophomore music business and entrepreneurship double major, said, “We were challenged from the very beginning of the summer to think outside the box – we weren’t looking for band-aids, we were looking for fixes.”

Pipeline Team 2011

Thanks to the Country Music Association and CMA CEO Steve Moore, the students began their Pipeline experience attending the Billboard Country Music Summit on June 6-7 where they learned more about the important issues facing music industry professionals. In mid-June, author and music producer Reed Arvin, one of Belmont’s adjunct faculty members, led the group through a Creativity Bootcamp, challenging them to get “outside the box” and to consciously think about their creativity.  Continuing to encourage their creative thought processes, the group then met with Mark Montgomery, former CEO of echomusic, with whom they discussed audience engagement.

Further exploring the impact of audience engagement, the Pipeline team hosted an event on Fri., July 22 at Nashville’s Club Roar. With performances by artists Mackenzie Scott, Natalie Royal and Foxes Have Foxholes, the evening introduced a recording format that is more affordable for up-and-coming artists and provided a unique live experience for fans.

The performance, complete with a catered meal, showcased the three artists as they performed live in the studio for an exclusive audience of 50. The event was put on for less than $3,000, including the expenses of studio time, catering, audio-engineers, video and photography. Each artist walked away from the event with a six-song EP, video footage and press pictures for use in their ongoing marketing efforts. The estimated cost for each artist had they pursued these items individually would be a minimum of $5,000, so the savings per artist could be as much as $4,000Performer Mackenzie Scott, said of the event, “The stillness and attentiveness I received from the audience was a complete gift and, honestly, every musician’s dream. I hope they felt as moved by the intimacy of the music as I did.”