A New York venture capital firm has committed to helping fund the eight startup teams that will next month start developing their plans in the Entrepreneur Center's inaugural Project Music accelerator program. (Applications are due next week.) Digital Entertainment Ventures' involvement will bump to $30,000 the funds each group will receive as part of their 14-week quest. The EC team also has secured a Project Music sponsorship from Google, which will provide "technical, industry and investment expertise." The EC's blog has more info here.
At an event Tuesday at Pinewood Social, YouTube announced a new partnership with the CMA.
In case you missed it, YouTube’s Director of Music Content Partnerships, Vivien Lewit, announced YouTube is partnering with the CMA to reach more members of the Nashville community and offer new educational opportunities for CMA members that will help them accelerate their musical careers.
In the coming year, YouTube will host multi-day production workshops to share best practices on creating content and building a fan base on YouTube. Participants can expect an opportunity to collaborate with musicians and other creators, get hands-on training with state of the art equipment and attend seminars on topics like audience development, programming and creative strategy.
Details, as the NBJ noted, are still vague:
Details about the partnership haven't been released yet, but it marks the second time that the CMA has ventured into music tech in as many months. In September, CMA signed on as the lead industry partner for the Nashville Entrepreneur Center's new music-tech accelerator, "Project Music."
"It's a good example of this moment," said YouTube spokesman Matt McLernon, when asked about the origins of the partnership. "There are a lot of one-off conversations we are having with Nashville right now."
YouTube will also open a version of its YouTube Space concept in Nashville, according to the NBJ; these are studios designed to help people learn the ins and outs and benefits of YouTube.
The Predators kick off a seven-game 17-day road trip tonight with a game in Glendale, Ariz. against the Phoenix Coyotes.
The trip — a byproduct of the Country Music Association taking over Bridgestone Arena for their annual awards — is the longest in team history. It includes games on both coasts and in four time zones.
The Predators have taken an extended road trip for the CMA Awards every season since 2006 (except for last season, which did not begin until January because of the lockout) and have had a pretty good amount of success, despite the difficult circumstance of playing a bevy of road games relatively early in the season.
The Predators overall record for the CMA Trip is 18-12-1. The team has had a winning record on the trip three times, an even .500 twice and a losing record just once:
In the three times the Predators have "won" the road trip, the team has had a winning record over their next 10 games twice. The one exception was 2011, when the team went 4-4-2, .500 by virtue of the overtime/shootout loss point.
Winning the trip, obviously, improves the team's playoff chances — as do any wins. The web site SportsClubStats uses multiple simulations to calculate playoff probability percentages every day of the season. The Predators improved those chances with each winning road trip — again, obviously — and hurt them in the other three seasons.
The biggest jump came in 2007, when a 4-1-0 road trip helped turn around a slow 4-6-0 start and boosted the Preds' playoff percentage from 21.7 to 59.4 percent, and they followed the trip with a 5-3-2 run in the subsequent 10 games. The biggest dip? In 2010. After starting the season 5-1-3, the Predators went 1-4-0 on the trip, their percentage dropping more than 35 points. In the nine games after the trip, the Preds went a mediocre 3-4-2.
The other difference in 2007 and 2010. The Preds missed the playoffs in the first and made it in the second.
The moral: while the road trip may be an important chapter in the season, it's hardly the whole story.
The Country Music Association has promoted Sarah McGrady to senior manager of strategic partnerships. McGrady joined CMA in 2009 as senior coordinator of strategic partnerships before being named manager of strategic partnerships in 2011. Lorie Hollabaugh and musicrow.com have more here.
The Country Music Association last week rolled out an upgraded health care program for its members and their families. The new CMA Instrumental Healthcare is a partnership between the industry group, Cigna, Pancoast Benefits and Vanderbilt University Medical Center. Enrollees will have access to a free prescription drug discount program at over 58,000 pharmacies nationwide as well as supplemental policies such as accidental, disability, dental and vision. They also will receive a 25 percent discount on their patient balance at VUMC up to a maximum of $2,000 per claim.
“Affordable and available health insurance is one of the most valued benefits for members of CMA,” said CMA CEO Steve Moore. “We strive to provide insurance options that meet our constituents’ needs and offer a whole new level of security — especially for members who are self-employed or otherwise not in a position to obtain coverage that fits their health requirements and budget. We feel confident that CMA Instrumental Healthcare accomplishes this important and necessary goal.”
The Country Music Association has beefed up its marketing and special events departments with the hiring of Karen Stump and Vilma Salinas. Stump (left in photo) has been named senior director of market research and comes from Scripps Networks Interactive. Salinas, who previously managed sales and marketing at downtown's Hard Rock Cafe, has been named senior manager of projects.
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