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8am-12pm: Registration and Check In - Atrium

8:30am-9:15am: Des Moines: The Next Music City - Cowles-Kruidenier Auditorium

Join industry experts for coffee and tea to discuss Des Moines' potential to grow into a Music City. Panelists include Jonathan R. Wynn (author of Music/City), Tobi Parks (Station 1 Records, Sony Music), and Kurt Bearinger (Community & Regional Planning, Iowa State). A thriving local music scene requires the support of musicians, the public, government officials, and area businesses for economic, social, and cultural benefit. Panelists will discuss the challenges we face as a music community in 2016 and identify goals as individuals and as a group to push Des Moines' music scene to the next level.

9:30am-10:30am: Music for All Ages (Free to the Public) - Heritage A/B (1st Floor)

Currently in effect, Des Moines city code (Sec. 10-8) prohibits the presence of persons under the age of 21 after 9pm in alcohol-licensed music venues. The current form of this ordinance greatly affects Des Moines' economic, tourist, and creative sectors and impacts the ability for our music scene to grow. Join a panel of local industry experts as they discuss the economic and cultural impact of the ordinance. Panelists include Bo James (Des Moines Music Commission, Hip Hope Inc.), Sgt. Lori Neely (DM Police Department), David Wilkins (Lefty's Live Music), Quinn Bottenfield (Musician), and moderator Timothy Meinch (Des Moines Register). Free and open to the public.

10:30am-12:00pm: Small Group Consultations - Atrium

With online registration, sign up for a 15-minute small group consultation with an industry expert leading their field in entertainment law, festival/venue booking, PR/marketing, or artist management. Experts include Brandon W. Clark (intellectual property attorney), Josh Parks Davis (Banned Booking), Jill Haverkamp and Andy Cusack (On Pitch), and Amedeo Rossi (80/35, SA Presents). Consultation spots are limited and are first come, first served. 

10:45am-11:30am: Session One

  • Survival Guide for Touring Bands - Classroom A/B (3rd Floor)
    • David Priebe (Green Room Music Source, MN), Jessinda Madonia (Bankers Trust Associate), Mike Tramontina (Visiting Nurse Services of Iowa), and Anne Cundiff (Hy-Vee Dietician) guide you through everything there is to know about booking out of town shows, scheduling a tour, living on a small budget, eating well while traveling, and ensuring your well-being while living in a Music City.
  • Nontraditional Jobs in the Music Industry - Heritage A/B (1st Floor)
    • The music industry offers a wide variety of employment opportunities for those of us with passions beyond musicianship. Discover how to blend your interests with music and learn more about alternate paths to take in the industry. Panelists include Bo James (Hip Hope Inc.), Priscilla Priebe (Creative Director of Green Room Music Source, MN), Dartanyan Brown (audio artist, educator), and Dana Meinch.
  •  Roadmap to Success: Critical Feedback for Developing Artists - Classroom A/B (3rd Floor)
    • The DMMC is excited to announce its newest education initiative designed to provide promising local musicians the resources, education, and development needed to push an artist's skill and brand to a level worthy of national recognition. The program will kick off at MU 2016 with an introduction and demonstration of the resources and feedback provided by this new DMMC initiative. The discussion will be led by industry professionals Tobi Parks (Station 1 Records, Sony Music), Thomas Kutz (Kreamer Law Firm, P.C.), Brandon Darner (Producer, Imagine Dragons), Amedeo Rossi (80/35, SA Presents), Jill Haverkamp (On Pitch), Lindsay Keast (DMMC Outreach Coordinator), and Adam Bartelt (2017 DMMC President). The vision of this new program is to support out music scene by improving our quality of music, establishing Des Moines as a city producing professional musicians and songs, and enhancing the draw of successful touring acts to central Iowa.

11:00am-1:00pm: MU Commons: Local Music Vendors & Networking (Free to the Public) - Atrium

Iowa has a robust music industry! Join local music organizations, academics, industry experts, and area businesses for casual networking and to learn more about the resources our community has to offer. Free and open to the public.

11:30am-1:00pm: Lunch - Click here for a list of dining options

1:00pm-1:45pm: Keynote by Jonathan R. Wynn - Cowles-Kruidenier Auditorium

MU is proud to present 2016's afternoon keynote speaker, Jonathan R. Wynn.

Wynn is a leading author and researcher of the impact of local music on economic development and community enhancement. Drawing from his experiences playing bass for a hip hop band to interviewing the mayors and festival producers of major national and international music festival, Wynn's most recent book, Music/City: American Festivals and Placemaking in Austin, Nashville and Newportis a look into how cities have adopted "festivalization" as a cultural policy, and the resultant effects of city branding on both locals and visitors, event organizers and participants. 

Jonathan Wynn is an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. His work has also been published in City & Community, Qualitative Sociology, Sociological Forum, Cultural Sociology, and Contexts Magazine, and an article in Ethnography called "Hobo to Doormen: The Characters of Qualitative Analysis, Past and Present." Read his Op Ed in The Des Moines Register: "Why cities should stop building museums and focus on festivals." All you have to do is ask and he'll teach you how to start playing the spoons.

2:00pm-2:45pm: Session Two

  • Brand Your Band: Strategic Self-Promotion Group Forum - Classroom A/B (3rd Floor)
    • Join marketing and industry professionals Andy Cusack (On Pitch), Tobi Parks (Station 1 Records, Sony Music), Priscilla Priebe (Creative Director of Green Room Music Source, MN), and Dartanyan Brown (audio artist, educator) for a group forum to share tips on successful self-promotion. Specific topics of discussion will include image branding, growing your online audience, protecting your intellectual property online, and more. Bring your own experiences to this discussion!
  • Legal Workshop - Heritage A/B (1st Floor)
    • Lawyers Thomas Kutz and Brandon W. Clark with moderator Brandon Darner (Producer, Imagine Dragons) help you navigate your most burning legal questions and teach you what to watch out for in the entertainment industry. 
  • Creative Booking to Expand Your Audience - Cowles-Kruidenier Auditorium
    • Bruce Bales (DSM Shows, Chapman House) and David Priebe (Green Room Music Source, MN) discuss how to strategically book shows to engage new audiences. Topics include how festival organizers select up-and-coming acts, what bookers look for in a band from out of town, and how to book unique events in nontraditional venues to build your local audience.

3:00pm-5:00pm: How to Create Social Change in the Music Industry - Workshop by the Publisher/Creator of Tom Tom Magazine, Mindy Abovitz - Cowles-Kruidenier Auditorium

In this 2-hour workshop, presented by Tom Tom Magazine's publisher and creator, Mindy Abovitz, the first hour will delve into social change and representation in the media and music industry. Mindy will discuss effective methods to employ in an individual and group setting. In the second hour, attendees will workshop issues within the music industry and learn tools necessary to move forward within its complicated and historically biased ways. Bring to this workshop new ideas, an open mind and music industry standards you would like to see changed!

Tom Tom Magazine is the only magazine in the world dedicated to female drummers. Tom Tom seeks to raise awareness about female percussionists from all over the world and hopes to inspire women and girls of all ages to drum, all while strengthening and building the community of otherwise fragmented female musicians. The magazine covers drummers of all ages, races, styles, creeds, sexualities, body sizes, skill levels and degrees of notoriety.

Mindy Abovitz is a self taught drummer and drum machine programmer with a Masters in Media Studies from The New School. She started Tom Tom Magazinethe first and only magazine about female drummers, in 2009. She hopes to impact the music industry through print media, new media, showcases, panels and community interactions and see a 50% increase of female drummers in the next ten years.

5:00pm-7:00pm: Art Opening & Networking (Free to the Public) - Hill Vintage & Knits (432 E. Locust St.)

Join speakers, showcase artists, and attendees for a special pop-up, music-themed art show opening and social hour. Drinks provided by Coors Light. Free and open to the public.

8:00pm-9:00pm: Keynote by Jessica Disu (a.k.a. FM Supreme) - The Basement (Des Moines Social Club, 900 Mulberry St.)

MU is proud to present 2016's evening keynote speaker, Jessica Disu (a.k.a. FM Supreme).

"Transforming pain into power" is a phrase Jessica Disu (a.k.a. FM Supreme) has encountered on her journey and she believes it is a message and reminder to move forward positively despite life's challenges and obstacles.

This keynote speech will feature several historical vignettes and personal stories about peace in Chicago, interpersonal & community violence, domestic violence, youth violence & intervention, music, education, activism, spirituality, depression and mental illness. Music can be instrumental in helping to heal a person, community and nation. This speech will discuss how music has impacted Jessica's community in Chicago for the past decade. 

9:00pm-1:00am: Showcase w/ FM Supreme + More Teeth + Kitsch + Squirrel flower - Handball Court and The Basement (Des Moines Social Club, 900 Mulberry St.)

Included with All-Access Conference + Showcase Pass. Limited individual showcase-only tickets are also available and can be purchased in advance hereTickets will be available at the door for $20. All-Ages Accessible.


The State Historical Building is at 600 E. Locust St. in Des Moines' East Village. Click here for more information on parking and directions.