January 2017 TMO Newsletter (continued)
2016 Recap Letter from TMO Director Brendon Anthony continued
In addition, during 2016 we’ve continued to develop our TMO social and digital media campaigns that highlight Texas music news, music business developments, job openings, opportunities and resources for artists, and much more. We’ve been able to reach and engage 15-20K people a day via our social media campaigns (more than the total number that we were able to reach in 1 entire months’ time before the launch of our social media channels). These campaigns are augmented by the TMO monthly newsletter which commenced in August of this year. This newsletter highlights major events throughout the state that generate millions in economic activity, as well as interviews with industry professionals who are kind enough to share their perspectives. Special thanks to audio engineering pioneer Rupert Neve of Wimberley, TX-based audio equipment manufacturer Rupert Neve Designs, and 30-plus year member of the Willie Nelson Family Band, Mickey Raphael, for their willingness to share their knowledge and experiences with our newsletter audience. Look for many more industry spotlight interviews to come. Our over 14k subscribers are offered information about community outreach programs, partnerships with nonprofits, and the more than 1,000 events happening statewide throughout the year. We welcome any input from the community that might make this publication more meaningful and impactful for our subscribers.
We’re also proud to have worked alongside various Texas nonprofit organizations in 2016, helping them achieve their goals and missions. Some highlights included sponsorship of the SIMS Foundation’s annual Heart of the City fundraiser which provides life-saving mental healthcare services to hundreds of industry workers who would otherwise not be able to afford them. Additionally, the TMO was honored to assist Kids in a New Groove in raising awareness of their mission to provide mentors, instruments, and lessons to Texas children in the foster care system.
Our re-brand/re-launch of the Texas Music Charitable License Plate program in July has to date raised more than $10,000 to be awarded to 501(c)3 nonprofit applicants to facilitate their purchase of music instruments and music lessons for Texas school children, and for educational music programming in underserved Texas communities.
2016 also saw the TMO working alongside Governor Abbott to actively support and defend Texas songwriters from harmful federal action taken by the U.S. Department of Justice. In a letter sent to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, Governor Abbott voiced his strong opposition to the Dept. of Justice’s decision to alter the method by which Performance Rights Organizations like ASACP and BMI are required by law to treat the licensing of compositions by multiple authors. In short, the decision would have fundamentally changed (in a harmful manner) the way that songwriters are legally allowed to write and create with one another. The position taken by the Governor Abbott was covered extensively in industry publications and was praised by industry professionals nationwide as an unprecedented stand on the side of Texas songwriters.
Our work to promote the Texas music industry, and garner referrals for Texas music businesses, has seen our staff working at renowned nationwide events and conferences, including: SXSW, Americana Music Conference, Folk Alliance International, UTSA Music Business Day, TMEA Music Educator’s Convention, Music Fest at Steamboat Springs, and beyond. We also hosted the 15th annual “Capitol Salute to Texas Music,” to international industry leaders, music industry CEOs and state officials. The message delivered during Governor Abbott’s address at this event was clear: We’re here to support the state’s $3.8 billion music industry economy and increase opportunities for job creation in Texas.
I am personally honored to serve in my role as Director of the Texas Music Office, working daily to foster a welcoming environment for job creation, and economic growth, for Texas music businesses and individuals like yourself. I look forward to this New Year and the opportunities for growth and positive change it affords.
All our best from the Texas Music Office…and Happy New Year.
Brendon Anthony, Director
Texas Music Office, Office of the Governor