Plywood Mornings with Micah Dalton & Josh Jackson
Yesterday, we had the privilege of attending this month's Plywood Morning lecture breakfast series with guests Micah Dalton, singer/ songwriter and founder of ATL Collective, and Josh Jackson, co-founder of Paste Magazine. The theme of the lecture was the importance of live music in a digital music age.
If you haven't heard, Atlanta was recently named the most influential city for music in the United States. This alone is pretty incredible.
Micah and Josh attributes several traits to this statistic:
1. Diversity: we're known for our hip-hop, country, folk, rock and classical.
2. Atlanta bands don't care about great songs; it's all about the vibe. (This attitude immediately diminishes the need for widespread attention, and focuses on the music at hand)
3. Limited industry presence. Again, musicians care about the music, not about getting signed. Consequently, there's purity, pride and the freedom to break the rules.
An interesting and invaluable piece of advice that was given was to always continue growing, responding and developing. When Napster, and then Spotify, altered the way we acquired and listened to music, parts of the music industry rebelled, insisting that the old way was the right way. But clearly, life moves on. Musicians need to be able to adapt for what is ahead and around the corner.
The same can be said for designers, innovators, leaders etc. (actually, just about anybody): you may have a great idea today, but know that it is not the end-all-be-all. The world will continue to grow and better itself and you need to be prepared to come up with a response for that. It's the reason why once successful, yet stubborn, companies, such as Kodak, Howard-Johnsons, K-Mart, are no longer household names.
(For those who haven't been before, there's about 20 minutes of mingling with Atlanta's greatest and humblest creative leaders. Everybody is incredibly friendly and welcoming, warmly offering hand shakes, business cards and exchange of inspirational tidbits. The thirty-ish of us were then invited to participate in a facilitated Q&A, followed by audience questions. And that's not even the cool part: the audience then breaks into groups of three to brainstorm solutions to a relevant problem posed by the guest speaker. Literally three minutes later, you're expected to publicly offer your ideas. The friendly crowd smothered any potential for being overwhelmed or anxious.)