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Key Learnings and Insights


Various technologies are presenting artists, creatives, venues, fans and stakeholders with new possibilities for ways to experience, create and perform music. We have listed a few of the most important technologies which currently impact the music industry and its future.

During the aftermath of the COVID pandemic, Effenaar Lab organized the first edition of Hybrid Music Vibes with the support of ‘Innovatielab’ and ‘Stichting Cultuur Eindhoven’. In a series of five knowledge sessions, regional talent learned about new technologies and was given access to a studio equipped with the latest technologies which they could use at their discretion. To assess the impact of the program on artists’ knowledge and skills regarding the use of new technologies, we conducted an extensive survey under the participants. This provided us with useful insights. To start, almost all of the participating artists saw opportunities when it comes to the use of new technologies, specifically technology as a tool to overcome limitations in time and space. However, incorporating these technologies into their practice proved a challenge for most, requiring a shift in mindset and thus hindering optimal utilization of the provided technologies. Nevertheless, by the end of the program the majority concluded they expect to use new technologies more frequently in the future, particularly when it comes to audience interaction. This emphasizes that, despite the need for some adjustments in the set-up of the program, Hybrid Music Vibes did contribute to the development of knowledge concerning the use of new technologies. And this paved the way for artists to begin incorporating these technologies in their work.

The outcomes of the conducted survey, along with the insights of the organization and the partners, set the stage for the second edition of Hybrid Music Vibes, made possible by Cultuurloket Digitall. This edition adapted a new format, while maintaining its focus on emerging artists, but expanding its reach nationally. In contrast to the previous edition, knowledge sessions were directly followed by workshops, challenging artists to apply the acquired knowledge directly to their work. Under the guidance of various professionals from the creative, music and tech industries, and with the assistance of students from related programs, artists worked towards a concept to be presented to a professional jury and the public. The jury, together with the audience, selected the artists whose concepts will be developed with the support of pop venue Effenaar and its partners.

Keeping in mind that the majority of the participating artists had no prior experience working with new technologies at the start of Hybrid Music Vibes, all presented concepts exceeded expectations. Approaching their participation with an open mind and eagerness to explore potential applications of new technologies for their practices, all artists developed a noteworthy understanding in a relatively short time frame as to why and how they would like to make use of specific technologies, along with their anticipated outcomes. In order to determine if and how the new set-up contributed to this, we again conducted a survey among participating artists. Their feedback highlighted the ‘well-structured format’, which broke down the use of new technologies into clear steps, starting from an exploration of their own artistic practice and desires. Furthermore, the inspiration sparked through examples given in the knowledge sessions by other various artists who are already immersed in new technologies, especially live demo’s by these artists, were highly valued. Six artists - Hiigo, Julia Sabaté, Max Frimout, RHIANNIN, De Toegift and Pxrple JAZZ – were selected to develop their concepts, each incorporating various technologies that aligned with the needs of their practices and identities. Artist stories: Hiigo, Julia Sabaté, Max Frimout, RHIANNIN, De Toegift and Pxrple JAZZ.

In order to develop their concepts, the artists were strategically paired by the Effenaar with the necessary experts including app, -web and software developers, AR/VR/XR developers, spatial sound and volumetric studio’s, among others. Despite the apparent differences in thinking and working methods between artists and technology experts, the collaboration orchestrated by the Effenaar – as a pop venue accustomed to bringing together diverse parties – proved to be mutually beneficial. Reflecting on the development process, artists stated that working closely with tech experts not only enhanced their understanding of the various technological options, but also provided valuable insights into critical considerations when developing concepts. These newfound skills empowered artist to take on a leading role in the development process, effectively bringing their ideas to life. Conversely, tech partners found themselves positively challenged while working with artists, having to question how they use technology, and thus developed products and services, in some cases resultin in new applications.

While the realized concepts vary in set-up, ranging from sophisticated to simpler utilization of new technology, each in their own way contributes to either enriching creative practice, providing new ways of presenting creative work or engaging audiences, particularly the fanbase. Take for instance sound artist Max Frimout, who through the development of his Odio app, enabled users to adapt spatial sound by adding a composer mode, democratizing the creation of unique soundscapes. On a different note, the Dutch indie pop band Hiigo, seamlessly merges analog and new technologies. Exploring the meaning of ‘thuis’ with their latest album, they give fans exclusive access to their virtual home via a scannable artwork on their vinyl, offering a unique behind-the-scenes experience. Learn more about how these distinct artists, sound artist Max Frimout and frontman Hans van der Werf the of Dutch indiepop band Hiigo experienced Hybrid Music Vibes.

In conclusion, the developed concepts and the research conducted to assess the impact of the program, collectively offer a compelling insight into the profound influence Hybrid Music Vibes had on participating artists as well as the involved tech-experts. All gained new skills, acquired knowledge and expanded networks beyond their own disciplines. Underscoring the value of a framework facilitating collaborative efforts between artist, tech experts and institutes like the Effenaar, this affirms the program’s success in providing a platform that bridges the gap between music and new technologies enabling the exploration of new grounds. In essence, Hybrid Music Vibes stands as a testament to the power of collaboration, technological exploration, and creative development in shaping the future of the music industry. Its results emphasize the need for initiatives like Hybrid Music Vibes, to drive on- going innovation within the industry.

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