Radiohead guitarist Ed O’Brien has been confirmed as a keynote speaker at the next instalment of MidemNet, the international forum dedicated to debating issues facing the music industry in the digital age.
O’Brien, who is a founding board member of the musician lobby group Featured Artists Coalition (FAC), will discuss Radiohead’s role as a pioneer in the digital distribution of music online and the opportunities the medium offers artists to connect with their fanbase.
The band achieved massive success marketing its most recent album In Rainbows online. In an industry first, the LP was offered to fans as a free download or on a user-choose payment basis. Ultimately, the band’s gamble paid off, with more than 1.2 million fans downloading the album on the day of its release for an average price of US$8.00.
Blogging on the MidemNet website, FAC acting CEO Jeremy Silver said the organisation was “thrilled” O’Brien would be addressing delegates at the event.
“It'll be really interesting to hear him speak then because the [recording industry] will have kept on transforming itself at the high rate of change it is currently enjoying – and so who knows what the hot topic will be?”
At age 41, O’Brien has been rated by Rolling Stone as one of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time.
MidemNet will be staged in Cannes, France, from January 24 – 27, 2010. Further information is available online at www.midem.com