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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 (!!!).


    Heartbeats Trend Report : New York


    Eric Welles Nyström, who works with artist management and brand consulting for lifestyle companies in NYC, and is a member of Heartbeats Movement, has shared his insights about marketing trends in NYC with us. Read about Eric’s thoughts of shoe brand Keep’s recent marketing campaign, the future of marketing in general and ‘organic’ as a trend, as well as why music is becoming more and more important to reach the target consumer.

    Get your copy of Heartbeats Trend Report : New York


    Heartbeats In Conversation With Gerd Leonhard

    Sounds Like Branding presents Heartbeats In Conversation With, a series of short conversations on relevant topics for marketing and communication. First out is a conversation between Heartbeats’ CEO Jakob Lusensky and Gerd Leonhard, media futurist and CEO of The Futures Agency. Watch them talk about the media of the future and what we can learn from the days of Gutenberg.

    The conversation took place at Lydmar Hotel in Stockholm.


    How Coca-cola won the world-cup (through music)


    The Sounds like Branding Beta Version is yours for a tweet

    SLB Beta Cover

    Sounds like Branding (How to use the power of music to turn customers into fans) is the forthcoming book by Jakob Lusensky, CEO at Heartbeats. The book takes you on an ear-opening journey through the history of music and marketing, from the humble jingle and Muzak to today’s music which is blurring the line between brands and bands; making brands in to the record labels of tomorrow.

    You can now download the Sounds like Branding Beta version for a tweet!

    Enjoy reading!


    Interview with media futurist Gerd Leonhard about the future of brand communication

    We caught up with media futurist and CEO of The Futures Agency, Gerd Leonhard in Paris the other day. Here, in roughly 60 seconds, he gives you his take on the future of branding and communication.


    The Manual - How to build a successful strategy to interest brands

    Heartbeats gives you ‘The Manual’ – a manual for bands and artists on how to build a successful strategy to attract brands (or how to sell out without selling out). This material was first presented at MIDEM earlier this year, and due to a big interest from artists, record labels and publishers, in getting access to the material, Heartbeats decided to put together ‘The Manual’.

    ‘The Manual’ is now yours for a tweet!

    You can also view ‘The Manual’ on SlideShare.



    The music stairway (no, not the Led Zeppelin song)

    The most important question for a brand is not whether they should use music, but rather how the music should be used. The four step ‘music stairway’ illustrates the most beneficial way for brands to work strategically with music.


    Many brands find themselves on Step One. This step is characterised by the unconscious usage of music. Essentially this is an ad hoc, make-it-up-as-you-go approach, often relying on staff or employees to choose music. The end result is a schizophrenic music experience that sends mixed branding signals to customers.

    Step Two is characterised by a conscious usage of music. Brands have developed their own music identity, through a defined sound with defined values. Often they have a sound logo or theme song. On Step Two, music has evolved into a branding element and strategic tool.

    Moving up to Step Three, a brand becomes even more actively involved in music. This commitment often takes form as music-oriented marketing campaigns ( e.g. “buy and get” promotions) and/or artist partnerships. A good example of a Step Three level of music involvement is Heineken’s ‘Green Room Sessions’ - a live club concept, presenting cutting edge artists and DJs.

    The Forth and final step on the music stairway requires ‘owning’ a strategic platform in music culture. In this scenario, brands are not merely associated with music, but also actively champion music through exclusive platforms or programs that can’t be found anywhere else. The Red Bull Music Academy is a good example of this.

    So the million dollar question is…What step is your brand on?