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    Prolong your Summer with the Heartbeats mixtape!

    Brian Shimkovitz, the person behind Awesome Tapes From Africa, has compiled a mixtape that is sure to prolong your Summer! It consists of musical gems which are hard-to-find for audiences outside of Africa. Enjoy!


    ‘Heartbeats’ By Awesome Tapes From Africa by Heartbeats


    1. 1. Francis Bebey - Bissau
    2. 2. Bill Diakhou - Gorgui
    3. 3. Souley Kante - Kudugu
    4. 4. Penny Penny - Shichangani
    5. 5. Ibro Diabate - Kéré Wali Gbaka
    6. 6. Alhaji K Frimpong - Kyenkyen Bi Adi Mawu
    1. 7. Karamoko Keita - Niame
    2. 8. Ogene - Onwere
    3. 9. Omar Knitri
    4. 10. Ramata Diakite - Aye Yafama
    5. 11. MC Mabasa

    About Awesome Tapes From Africa

    Using a hefty stock of cassette tapes acquired while studying hip-hop in Ghana in 2004-2005, Brian Shimkovitz launched Awesome Tapes from Africa (ATFA) in 2006. ATFA is first and foremost a blog devoted to sharing these hard-to-find musical gems with audiences outside of Africa. ATFA has music you won’t easily find anywhere else - except, perhaps in its region of origin.

    After five years of spreading world music to the masses, ATFA is launching a label. Starting this October, ATFA will re-issue select recordings. Kicking off with an album from Malian singer Nâ Hawa Doumbia called La Grande Contatrice Malienne Vol 3, ATFA plans to distribute LP, CD, and MP3 formats via SC Distribution - with 50% of profits going to the artists (!!!).


    The Monocle Weekly: Sounds Like Branding exclusive interview


    Monocle’s editor in chief Tyler Brûlé and culture editor Robert Bound speak to Jakob Lusensky about the book Sounds Like Branding and the relationship between music and marketing.

    Listen to the Monocle Weekly, edition 113, online or download the programme here and you’ll hear Monocle’s editors, amongst them Tyler Brûlé, speak with Jakob Lusensky on how music and marketing have blended together, how it has affected artists, the future for music branding, and much more (if you want to go directly to this, skip to 38:00).

    slbenglishAbout the book Sounds Like Branding

    Sounds Like Branding is an ‘ear-opening’ journey through the history of music and marketing, from the humble jingle and the arrival of Muzak to Michael Jackson’s groundbreaking association with Pepsi in the 1980s and music branding embraced today by global brands such as Nike, Starbucks, Levi’s and Coca-Cola.

    “Jakob Lusensky has done a great service to all marketers by writing Sounds Like Branding. Every company should have a music strategy. Some do; most don’t. This book shows you how. It’s a five step programme – a very short stairway to heaven.”
    Kevin Roberts, CEO Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi

    Read more here.

    Order Sounds Like Branding at Amazon.co.uk


    About the Monocle Weekly

    The Monocle Weekly is a mix of smart discussion, previews, field reports and feature interviews. From Monocle’s studio in London and their bureaux in Tokyo and New York, Monocle’s editors focus on the stories shaping the week ahead.

    Culture editor Robert Bound is a regular with his weekly playlist of artists established and obscure and editor Andrew Tuck is at hand to moderate debates and pull in contributions from our correspondents in far flung corners of the world. The Monocle Weekly is hosted by editor in chief Tyler Brûlé.


    The Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Project returns

    The Smirnoff brand are bringing back The Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Project, building on the great success of 2010’s global initiative. Like last year, the vodka brand is encouraging its fans to share what makes their nightlife original and vote for the best ideas. These will be implemented on November 12, the big night. This time, 50 countries all around the globe will be involved in the night swap.

    These one-of-a-kind nightlife parties, which will include music, drinks, places, tastes and dances, will be hosted at special venues: Just like in 2010, people from one country will contribute ideas for a party to be arranged in another country. Last year, the programme was launched in 14 countries (the USA, Australia, Canada, the GB, Thailand, Brazil, and Germany, to name but a few) in 10 different time zones, engaging 2 million people through Smirnoff Facebook fan pages. This year Smirnoff decided to give an opportunity to say ‘I was there’ to as many as 10 million fans, by extending the cultural exchange project to include 50 countries in total. Some of the countries involved are Australia, Brazil, China, Colombia, Dubai, Germany, Ghana, Great Britain, Israel, Serbia, US and Vietnam (find the full list in the press release)

    This year, the Smirnoff brand also partnered with Madonna in a search for “the Most Original Nightlife in the Universe”, to find the best dancer to join Madonna’s next tour.


    Revellers worldwide are invited to co-create and participate in the Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Project by contributing ideas on what makes their local nightlife distinct in the categories of drinks, dance, fashion, music, places, and more creating a nightlife cocktail of unique events. The most inspiring suggestions from each region will be captured online and exchanged with another country on November 12, when the night swap takes place.

    By participating online, fans will have the chance to win a place at one of the global events or experience another country’s party at a Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Project event in their own city.

    Find out more on Facebook or Diageo’s homepage.


    Brands - the gateway to discovering new music

    We know that music means a lot to people. Recently the report ‘Uncovering a musical myth’ let us know that people rank music as more difficult to live without than sports, movies and newspapers. Thanks to a recent Heartbeats Creative Council member survey, we now also know that people listen to music at least once a day. Further, that more than 9 out of 10 respondents search the web for new music and artists every month and that 92.4% are positive towards brands collaborating with artists.

    The results show that 32% of the respondents listen to music 4-8 hours per day, 7.5% for more than 8 hours and just as many for almost all the time they’re awake. 20.7% listen to music between 2-4 hours per day. Only 5.6% listen to music for less than an hour, and unsurprisingly, no-one says they do not listen to music.



    We also wanted to know more about the respondents online habits in regards to looking for new music, and asked them about it. The survey results show that as many as 96.3% are actively looking for new music and artists online each and every month. 32% say they spend more than 10 hours a month and as many as 18.8% say they spend at least an hour a day online, searching for new music and artist on the web.



    81.1% further say they have discovered new music and artists through a brand (through a campaign or TV-commercial or through a music site provided or sponsored by a brand such as Electronic Beats, Converse Music and Noisey.com).



    What about people’s approach to brands collaborating with artists then? Well, we asked the respondents about their opinion on this matter and the results show us that the vast majority are positive. As many as 83% say they are “really positive, as long as the brand and the artist match”. Almost 10% went as far as to say “it’s a must if the music scene is going to survive”. Only 7.5% say they think it would be better without brands supporting artists. No one agreed with the statement that they wouldn’t listen to artists connected to a brand. Music truly means a lot, and the attitude towards brands supporting, promoting and exploring new artists and music is almost all good.



    Besides getting to know people’s listening and searching habits in regards to music, as well as their opinion of brand and artist collaborations, we wanted them to let us know which global brands they think perform the best in regards to the artist collaborations (in any kind of way, i.e. using artists in campaigns, sponsoring them, etc.). We also wanted the respondents to tell us why they picked the brands they did.

    Red Bull clearly got first prize due to its Red Bull Music Academy. To quote one respondent, “Red bull with its academy is the best example ever, it’s really involved in discovering new talent but also in pointing out the experience of old school artists, and it’s global.” The first runner up is Coca-Cola, mostly due to the beverage brand’s collaboration with K’naan, and Converse. Close behind was Apple, Pepsi, Adidas, Levi’s and T-Mobile.

    The tag cloud is to scale and shows you which global brands the respondents think perform best in regards to artist collaborations.

    About the survey: The respondents in this survey are members of Heartbeats’ ambassador program, Heartbeats Creative Council. The members come from all over the world and are aged between 22-70. Many of them are of course interested in music, and some even work with it, but many work in a variety of other fields such as medicine and healthcare, design and marketing.

    Three of the respondents were in the running to win the book Sounds Like Branding, recently internationally released. The lucky winners are Jimmy O’Mahony, Jonathon Singleton and Rodrigo Chamis.

    Note: The results do not sum up to 100% due to rounding, and some questions have been asked as multiple-choice.


    Converse Rubber Tracks

    Converse Rubber Tracks, a free recording studio in Brooklyn sponsored by Converse, has recently opened for business. The brand says it wants the venue to serve as a ‘catalyst for originality’ by giving new and emerging bands the opportunity to record their songs in a high-quality studio setting.

    In 2010, Converse released their plan to convert an old dry cleaners in Brooklyn into a cutting edge recording studio, in yet another attempt to become a patron of the arts. The Rubber Tracks studio, developed together with media and marketing outfit Cornerstone, is now made available to new and worthy bands, and the shoe brand has actually been signing up artists since last year. Locals Aabaraki, Majuscules, Andre Henry and Super Rocket Car will be the first ones to lay down music at the studio.

    “Rubber Tracks can also give bands the means to expose their music to a much larger audience through content captured while recording, including songs and behind-the-scenes video,” says Converse. “Artists will have the option to utilise Converse.com and our social media channels to promote their content, potentially reaching millions.”


    Sounds Like Branding released today!

    SLB English

    Today marks the international release of the book Sounds Like Branding, published by Bloomsbury Publishing Plc (A&C Black Publishers Ltd).

    “Jakob Lusensky has done a great service to all marketers by writing Sounds Like Branding. Every company should have a music strategy. Some do; most don’t. This book shows you how. It’s a five step programme – a very short stairway to heaven.”
    - Kevin Roberts, CEO Worldwide, Saatchi & Saatchi

    Sounds Like Branding is an ‘ear-opening’ journey through the history of music and marketing, from the humble jingle and the advent of Muzak to Michael Jackson’s groundbreaking association with Pepsi in the 1980s and the music branding embraced today by global brands such as Nike, Starbucks, Levi’s and Coca-Cola.

    Order Sounds Like Branding at Amazon.co.uk

    Interested in a sneak preview of the book? Download a free excerpt of Sounds Like Branding and read about why you should market your brand through music, the music stairway, strategies for working with music and more!

    Get a free excerpt



    Heartbeats Trend Report : Barcelona


    NEUS MÈLICH is a coordinator at the Business Development Service of the Ministry of Culture of Catalonia, developing a strategic, wide and active creative industries policy. They support actors from the audiovisual, theatre, music, publishing and visual arts industries in Catalonia. Neus is also member of Heartbeats Movement and a sommelier, her professional goal being to pair her two great passions; wine and culture. Read about her insights in regards to music and marketing trends in Barcelona.

    Get your copy of Heartbeats Trend Report : Barcelona


    How your Dad’s taste in music has influenced yours

    There are many reasons why you listen to the music you do today. For many, one of their great influences is the music their Dad listened to at home, or maybe a concert he took them to. Some of you may have sworn to never listen to anything like your Dad’s music again, some may have loved it. Either way, the music your Dad listened to when you were young had an effect on your taste today.

    Folks at the multi-room music system makers Sonos asked ‘What do dear old Dad’s listening habits say about the artists in your repertoire?’ and created a flowchart predicting what kind of music you prefer by the tunes your father listened to when you were young. If you’re lucky, your father exposed you to a variety of music during your formative years.


    Illustration by Column Five Media.