Thursday, January 17, 2013

A Message from the President

By Doug Ruffin
     Boston Music Coalition

2013 will be a very fortunate year for live music throughout greater Boston. I predict that because I can already read the signs indicating a strong year for live music. You needn’t read tea leaves to understand the positive signs of growth for live music.

First; Radio executives took a good look and actually opened their eyes to Boston’s diversity and realized that most of the four million people listening to radio in this market are not interested in right wing talk and oldies. Bostonians are energetic, diverse and are ravines for new music. Well, who would have funked! While you and I already knew this (for God knows how many years) executives took a good look at the demographics and the music download choices. They saw what is actually trending and “selling” in music these days. And now? The radio dial actually reflects the tastes and demographics of the market. Wait … Shouldn’t that be the business plan for radio in the first place? … I’m just saying. … And now that we have stations flipping out of the past and in to the reality of diverse tastes from Electronic Dance Music to Hip Hop and R&B (yeah, here in Boston no less); Live music talent can use radio as a vehicle to promote live performances. Every new play list opens the door for new live genres performed, national tours and new and local live talent.

The Arts continue to grow while facing huge economic challenges. Live music performances in the arts continue to show signs of growth. The Boston Symphony Orchestra, for example, had a remarkable year during 2012 and they expect to do just as well, if not better, in 2013. Arts Emerson is growing it’s brand and performance choices all over Boston. Many others are growing too like my friends at World Music CRASHarts who, by the way, are presenting, the group, “Pink Martini” at the Opera House in Boston on February 16th. That’s just one of many examples of live music choices we’ll all have this year. You will be able to depend on the Boston Music Coalition to report on the trends and happenings in live music throughout 2013

Just one more sign of things to come. Casinos! Maybe not this year; But if the State casino commission can get up from their continuous late afternoon state of depression and wake up (in the morning) to the fact that Casinos are indeed legal in Massachusetts, perhaps a license (maybe two) will be granted. Consider this. The O’jay’s are performing in twin Rivers in Rhode Island this weekend. If we had a Casino at Suffulk Downs for example, The O’jay’s and other popular music groups would be generating revenues here instead of …. Well…There! 

That being said, I look forward to an exciting year of live music.  


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