DROPSTUFF.nl is a small design company from the Netherlands based in the Netherlands Institute of Sound and Vision in Hilversum. René van Engelenburg (founder DROPSTUFF.nl): ‘We design public media experiences, for museum, festivals and all kinds of public presentations. We use media in the widest sense” In the last two years DROPSTUFF.nl did a lot of Virtual Reality projects for cultural heritage.
They’ve designed three projects in which cultural heritage is being made into a modern-day experience for a broad and, in particular, young public. René tells: “We have co-developed the BigArtRide with Europeana and Sound and Vision. This is a cycling race game through a virtual landscape that you can play live with someone in an entirely different place.” Last spring DROPSTUFF.nl did a tour through Europe where one bicycle was stationed in Amsterdam and one was travelling through the European capitals.
Royalty and VR
DROPSTUFF.nl also made a virtual 360 tropic degree refurbishment of the study of Prins Bernhard (the husband of former Queen Juliana) as it would have looked at Soestdijk Palace in the 1960s. His famed collection of elephants comes to life in a game.
This production has, moreover, been nominated for a Dutch Game Award 2016.
Their latest production is VR_MEER. In VR_MEER, developed for the Mauritshuis, you make a virtual journey in a classic red English phone booth and arrive in a painting by the famous Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer that is now owned by the English Queen. VR_MEER can be seen as of 29 September in the Mauritshuis in the Netherlands. The visitors of NEXT could already enjoy the VR_MEER production at the demo of DROPSTUFF.nl in Hamburg.
Fuga – Manage, distribute and promote your music
Fuga is a Dutch company operating on international scale. They build technology and provide services for content owners, record labels and distributors. Pieter van Rijn (CEO at Fuga): “We deliver content on behalf of content owners to digital service providers (DSP’s) such as ITunes, Spotify and Google Play.” With a catalog of over 2 million tracks, their content management & delivery platform provides instant delivery of more than 2.5 million music tracks and videos per month to over 250 DSP’s worldwide for over 5000 labels. With their trends and analytics suite they enable their clients to see how their sales have been doing in various regions and DSP’s.
Fuga started as a master rights metadata, audio and content platform and were able to distribute to over all the 250 DSP’s globally. Fuga has now taken a more moralistic approach because they think the market is ready for that. Pieter explains: “We want to be the point of truth not only for master rights data but also for performance rights metadata and ultimately for copyright metadata.” With the new Fuga platform they want to be ready for the next step. Professionals in the industry are now using the platform behind their desktop, but according to Fuga it will be used more on tablets in the future, for viewing, editing data and even sending and distributing music from mobile phones and tablets. Besides that, Fuga wants to provide a platform that is not only interesting for the digital music managers and their clients but far broader. Meaning that they want managers to be able to make marketing decisions on their catalogue and they want to have general managers have an idea of how their company performs.
Veejays.com – The VJ magic
Noortje van den Eijnde (VJ name Noralie) works as a VJ for Veejays.com. Veejays.com has a team of 25 VJ’s and there al specialized in certain music genres. Furthermore, they have 3D animators, a special film team and also try to do more VR projects. They are located in Amsterdam but also do a lot of projects all over the world.
The mystery of a VJ
A lot of people don’t know what a VJ actually does. Noortje explains: “VJ’s are the guys sitting in the back at concerts with their white pale faces, and bended backs. But those white creatures in the back can do magic on the screen.” VJ’s not only control the screens but can set stages on fire, make buildings collapse with video mapping and they give dancers special magical powers. Noortje tells she is very lucky to be a VJ in the Netherlands because she can actually make money by being a VJ. VJ-ing became a real business in the Netherlands not only for art projects or festivals but also for business events.
As a VJ at Veejays.com Noortje does the art direction for video mapping (projecting on 3D objects like a table or a building). VJ’s can make optical illusions on a 3D shape. Noortje loves being a VJ: “While you are sitting behind your screen where you can almost hide but actually you have the power of an event. Lightning and video have a big impact on an event.”
Chordify – Karaoke for your fingers
Bas de Haas is the CEO and co-founder of Chordify. Before Bas became an entrepreneur he gave guitar lessons. Every time a student came by he had to figure out the chords for a song, what took a lot of time. Bas strongly believes that playing guitar is all about the fun and not figuring out the chords.
After his PhD research on music information retrieval, he set up a team of experts and they created a product that solves this problem. Chordify is a free online music service that transforms music from YouTube, Deezer, SoundCloud or a private collection, into chords. Make it as easy as possible to play along with the song you wish to play.
Chordify distinguishes itself in two fundamental ways, they figure out the chords of a song using state-of-the art technology and it is extremely easy to use. Bas: “It’s like karaoke for your fingers.“
1 in 10 people on this planet plays an instrument and for Chordify that is a huge market, they welcome 1,5 million visitors each month and they have ‘chordifyed’ 4,5 million tracks. There is no venture capital involved, Chordify sells premium plans and international advertisement partnerships. The premium features are ‘chordifying’ your own song on your machine, downloading PDF to print out the chords and much more. In the advertisement space they promote artists and festivals but also commercial messages for Converse, Sonos and Netflix for example.
Chordify has the ambition to become the number one platform to learn your favorite music. In order to achieve this ambition, they focus on three important product developments in the near future. Chordify wants become more social by allowing users to store, share and collect their practicing history and their music preferences. For artists to engage more with their fans, Chordify made it possible to embed the Chordify experience into their own website.
Last but not least; Chordify is now also available as an app for your mobile device.
Gigstarter – A story about live music
People who work in the music industry or music fanatics find it quite normal to book live music. But the majority of the people find it hard to book live music. They don’t know where to go because there is no clear transparent overview of all the artists you can book. That is the reason Gigstarter build a marketplace for live music. At Gigstarter you can book all kinds of live music from classical orchestra, dj’s, rockbands and even singer-songwriters. It’s an easy to use platform to find and book live music.
On the one side you have the bookers, people who are interested to book live music but on the other side you have the artists. There are a lot of artists under the radar who are difficult to find because they act locally and have a small network. You also have on the radar artists, popular artists, like Jan Smit, a popular Dutch singer from the Netherlands. If you would like to book Jan Smit and Google him, you will find a list intermediaries. They are not transparent, expensive and in between the booker and the artist. “So in the end you have a rich intermediary, a rich Google, poor booker and a poor Jan Smit.”
Bringing booker and artist together.
Gigstarter offers the solution to bring the booker and the artist directly together. Artists can promote themselves on the platform, the booker can discover good acts and book always at the source. Artists can create a free profile, get discovered and get the opportunity to get more gigs. The profile of an artist gives a good overview of what you can expect. You can find a price indication, live music video and three demo videos and there is a direct contact button. In the future Gigstarter wants to build a professional cloud based CRM system so you can get all the data from the artists, which is interesting for booking agencies. There are more than 1200 artists from the Netherlands are using Gigstarter. And each month about 200 bookings.
Gigstarter will expand through Europe. In September they have launched in Spain with a Spanish version of the site. They get more bookings by professional bookers like Paradiso in Amsterdam and they have a growing number of famous artists.
Spinnin’ Records is a Dutch independent record label, founded in 1999. Besides their main imprint, Spinnin’ Records hosts approximately forty sub-labels. It meteoric rise in the industry was fuelled by a hugely successful online strategy. Meindert Kennis (CMO) explains how Spinnin’ Records became such a big brand in the music industry.
The main goal of Spinnin’ Records is to bring inspiring artists from their bedroom to the main stages of big festival all over the world. They have accomplished that with artists like Afrojack, Nicky Romero and Martin Garrix. When these artists started with their first demo’s, Spinnin’ Records helped them with the marketing strategy, pushing their music online via Spinnin’s social channels (Facebook, Youtube, Spotify and Soundcloud) and helped them to grow their carrier.
In 2011 Spinnin’ Records became such a big brand they received about 150.000 demos each day. A lot of these demos were deleted because they had no time to listen to all these demos. So they came up with the Talent Pool. The Talent Pool started out as a Facebook application, where people can upload their track, add it to the Talent Pool, create a profile and people could vote for their demo so the demo gets higher on the big pile of demos. The track of the week is featured on a radio show. Nowadays the Talent Pool is a separate platform. The problem is people copy what is already there, so Spinning Recrods is always looking for something new. Meindert: “It is hard to communicate with all the artists, to interact with them we give them feedback on their music. Spinnin’ Records has about 15 million Youtube subscribers and their best watched video has 850 million views.
NEXT Conference is the event for those who actively participate in shaping the digital transformation. Once a year about 1,300 digital minds come together to learn about the latest trends and make their company fit for the future. Creative Holland participated in the Conference Program, organized a Dutch Digital Impact session and was the host of the closing network event.
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