30 Under 30 Awards April 21, 2020

TMN 30 Under 30: Meet your A&R & Creative winners

TMN 30 Under 30: Meet your A&R & Creative winners

With the finalists, 30 victors and Reader’s Choice champ revealed, it’s time to meet the winners.

First up, the three TMN 30 Under 30 heroes from the highly competitive A&R & Creative category.

Congratulations to Harry Young from Dew Process, Helena Ho from EMI Music Australia and Marietta Ouzas who works with Sony Music, Lemon Tree Music and Artists Only.

We asked each applicant to outline the biggest challenges facing the music industry and all 30 entries were unique and worth sharing. Responses were given prior to the outbreak of COVID-19.

This year’s are made possible thanks to six incredible sponsors, including APRA AMCOS, Eventbrite, MTV, Sony Music, Universal Music and Warner Music.

Harry Young, Dew Process

What are the biggest challenges facing the music industry?

“Finding new ways for artists to connect directly with audiences and ensuring they can sustain a career long term is a central challenge for the music industry.

“With less traditional media and therefore methods of exposure – print and blogs particularly – the reality is that many well-worn pathways to success of the past are no longer there.

“Ironically despite this decline, the saturation of music and artists in everyday life has never been higher.

“Anyone can upload a song on any digital platform and become an overnight success, but there’s no single fool-proof formula and the challenge for the industry broadly is in ensuring no one entry point is excluded or overly relied upon.

“Music tastes changing rapidly and in unexpected ways, finding and sustaining a career with long term fans is something we must help artists work towards.

“For some, sustainability may come from consistency created through deep connections with a highly loyal audience, while for others it’s about evolving as an artist in a way that remains authentic, but appeals to popular audiences.”

Helena Ho, EMI Music Australia

What are the biggest challenges facing the music industry?

“In recent years, together as an industry, we seem to have been making headway when it comes to addressing the overt sexual harassment and abuse that women in music experience (i.e. the #MeToo and domestically, #MeNoMore movements).

“What we need to be working towards now, however, is changing our everyday behaviours and becoming aware of our ingrained micro-aggressions.

“Yes, there are female-identifying figures who are in positions of power, and are paving way for other women in the music industry. But even at the top, women are still constantly undermined and are treated as lesser than their male counterparts. And what fuels these attitudes are the general dismissals of women’s capabilities, purely based on their gender.

“This form of insidious misogyny (“she’s a young girl, she doesn’t know what she’s doing” etc.) is extremely prevalent in the music industry; it’s deep-rooted, passive-aggressive and can ultimately lead to more serious cases of harassment.

“Getting to the root of this behaviour is how we, as an industry, can change for the better.

“Part of this involves taking responsibility upon ourselves to change this ingrained status quo, that has traditionally benefited men in the workplace.

“Many labels and publishers have introduced dedicated seminars/workshops to counteract this behaviour and drive awareness. It’s about not being afraid to call out your peers when they make a throwaway sexist comment.

“By correcting one another and pulling up our own micro-aggressions, it is a step forward towards gender balance within the music industry.”

Marietta Ouzas, Sony Music / Lemon Tree Music

“A major challenge for the future of the music industry is ensuring it is leading the way when it comes to diversity and inclusion; not just gender, but also disability, ethnicity, sexuality, age and much more.

“We need to invest in building more inclusive practices so the business can advance in ways we can all be proud of.

“Another challenge is how to help artists and their music cut through in an age of increasing digital noise, social media, fake news and always-on cycles of creation and promotion.

“We need to continue to find ways for artists to tell their story so they create true fans, not just casual listeners.”

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