The notes below are from the meeting held on November 16th and was attended by approximately 40 individuals from all aspects of NI’s music industry. Please note that these are points made by attendees only and were discussed on the night. As soon as I have a copy of the audio from the night, I’ll post that too.
Ongoing discussions on NIMIC, what happened and what’s next are at Fastfude, as well as on this blog. If there’re any other news items/input/reports on NIMIC, ideas for next steps etc are welcome in the comments.
Thanks go to Jen at Bruised Fruit for compiling these:
Minutes from “NIMIC – What’s Next” Meeting
Monday 16th November 2009
Prepared by Jennie McCullough, Bruised Fruit
What follows are some of the main points that were made by participants at the meeting held in The Limelight, Belfast to discuss how the music industry in NI can best move forward.
It was generally accepted that NIMIC as we know it is closed. So the questions were asked: What happens next? What should happen? Is there a need for a similar body to take it’s place?
75% of people there thought that something like NIMIC is needed.
It was suggested that any future body should have sub-strands to represent different sectors.
The industry can be broken down into those that export outside NI and those that provide an indigenous service within NI.
The needs of different sectors were explored. It became clear that there are different needs for each sector, and suggested that maybe there is scope to set up two different bodies to serve each sector.
The need for a central focal point was raised, a first point of contact where information and contacts can be shared.
It was suggested that a lobbying body could be set up to look at issues such as the levels of local music being played on radio.
A membership led organisation representing all sectors across all of NI could be very powerful. It was suggested that certain criteria could be put in place in order to gain membership.
Examples of MMF and AIM were given, and suggested that NI branches of these types of organisations could be useful.
It was noted that in terms of the wider music industry in the rest of the UK and the world, NI is still very under-developed and artists can have unrealistic expectations about the levels of support they need.
It was suggested that as well as supporting each other with internal growth we should be looking outside NI to other countries for advice and expertise so that the industry here can advance.
It was agreed that the NI industry will benefit from talking and working together and supporting each other at things like networking events.
It was mentioned that there is currently a lot of support for the grass roots industry through organisations like Oh Yeah, The Nerve Centre, schools and colleges. But the problem arises once people get past that level.
It was suggested that if a body was to be set up in the future, it would be very beneficial if they could take advice from the QUB report commissioned so that time and money haven’t been wasted. The report could be a useful starting point for a new body.
Furthermore it was stated that the NIMIC website which was funded through the Arts Council could also be a useful resource for any future body.
The idea of a Performing Rights Society specifically for NI was suggested which could provide an income stream for artists.
The question was asked: Should all sectors be represented under one body?
It was suggested that yes they should, as one larger body will then have more power and will be a lot easier to apply for funding as an industry if we have a collective voice.
It was suggested that there is a need for a strong leader or figurehead for the industry.
As a final note the sharing of ideas was encouraged, and people were keen to talk more and continue discussing how to move things forward.