Category: Blog

Best Practices for the New World of Live Music

In my ebook on Social Media for the music industry (Take the Crowd to the Cloud), I begin with the following statement:  The landscape of how audiences are built has completely, thoroughly changed in the last decade – in fact, it has redefined itself more than once.  Being malleable enough to “grow” with the flow can mean the difference between big successes or devastating failures in the music and digital arenas.  All of us, whether we’re artists or authors or thought leaders, must recognize that, in order to succeed, we must also think and act like CEOs and marketing mavens.

That idea, however, of becoming marketing mavens, must be tempered by a deep understanding of where your fan base is – not only insofar as location, but also where they’re at economically.  Of course, this specifically refers to live music, digital music and digital distribution are a different issue, and one that I address often.

If your next live gig is in Los Angeles or New York, then have at it, your ticket buyers are at least in a city that has jobs to offer, giving them a fighting chance at a healthy ticket price.  But if you’re playing in Rhode Island or Flint, Michigan, you have to seriously consider what the market can bear.  A lower ticket price doesn’t have to mean you’re eating PB&J for a week either, it means you have to get creative, so that those who want more contact or have more expendable income, can choose to participate on a higher level.  Consider a paid meet & greet before you go onstage, or an after party with some free merch to go with the separate ticket price.

Whatever you do, you have to do what Bob Lefsetz recently shared in his newsletter, the Lefsetz Letter: You have to align yourself with your fans.

Kelli Richards
CEO of The All Access Group

You can sign up for an advance copy of my ebook at (just click ebooks when you get the confirmation).


An Intimate “Fireside Chat” with Hollywood Producer, Gary Goldstein

An excerpt of Kelli’s Q&A with Hollywood Producer, Gary Goldstein, an inspiring voice in the film and music industries. Gary Goldstein produced one of the most iconic cultural expressions of the last generation: Pretty Woman. He has gone on to mentor many of the leading creative voices in music and film. He is an accomplished film producer, an author, a speaker, an innovator, a philanthropist, and a great guy. This is definitely one of the best fireside chats yet. (To hear this entire interview, please visit the Resources Page on my Website.)

Kelli Richards: Gary, put on your consultant’s hat for a moment, if you will.  When you look forward at the entertainment industry, what do you think is the biggest challenge we face, and what kinds of solutions do you see down the road?

Gary Goldstein: Very few people understand – artists and everyone haven’t really been taught — business literacy.  They don’t know the meaning of it.  The value of your intellectual property is so precious that to give it up for a royalty after expenses… well, the landscape is changing.  Make it your mission to find out what works for YOU.  Get engaged, get involved in these conversations.  Become joyful and excited about learning the marketing piece – the business of your art.  That’s never going to be less than central to your success. You know, Lady Gaga, she didn’t invent innovative marketing in today’s sandbox.  But she and her team simply mastered it better than most.  Her talent’s evident, sure, but her unspeakable, astonishing success is the stuff of brilliant, innovative marketing.


Kelli Richards: That’s because she herself does that.  She has a team around her that’s wonderful, but she herself, makes it a point to understand and to harness the power of social media and technology.  She actively embraces it, takes it on, leverages it to its fullest – and for example, understands the power of mailbox money with royalties in her retirement years, so she doesn’t give up her publishing rights.

Gary, What do you think are the DISadvantages of artists running their own content, if you see any – are artists at risk of becoming SO independent, that they won’t lean on the amazing knowledge base and expertise out there in the entertainment industry?

Gary Goldstein: Yes, I think that is the risk.  I think the risk is … the deficit is the education gap that we have suffered up until now.  And we have a learning gap.  There are a lot of folks who really don’t know or forget that they do need to become master entrepreneurs, marketers, business people and get excited about that.  Not get so intoxicated just with your music or your website that you forget to get that result, to really drive that relationship with your audience.  So to do that, yeah, don’t forget to seek out more successful people in the space.  Get mentors.  Surround yourself with collaborators who know what they’re doing.  …get noticed, get referrals, get access. …

….Get thee to multiple mentors.  Get thee to five-minute mentors, lifelong mentors.  Get thee to anyone who really has wisdom.  Not information, not data, not opinions.  Someone who really deeply has some wisdom, some success.  Get their counsel.  It will help you become fearless and humble at the same time.  It will help you believe in the possibility of your goals.  So you get out of your cubicle brain and into your joyful, young brain that loves everything new.  The cool thing is that it becomes a deeply personal time and journey.

Kelli Richards: And everybody will benefit from a guide on that journey.  There’s no reason to do it alone.  And the reality that there are people out there like you and I who are such mentors and coaches and guides, and we have a lot to offer those kind of people who are looking for us, who are seeking that support.


Gary Goldstein: Here’s the beautiful thing about being stubborn enough and hanging out long enough and having a little age on you.  For me, the past is a gift but I don’t live there.  For me, everything is about where I’m going.  The stuff ahead of me, I’m so excited about.  Using every learning, every piece of wisdom, every strategy, every relationship that I’m blessed to have in my life.  Tribe Hollywood is a great example of that.  Instead of me  mentoring people one at a time, I want to mentor them a thousand, two thousand, three thousand at a time.



To hear this entire interview, please visit the Resources Page on my Website.) And to learn more about Gary Goldstein’s latest project, Tribe Hollywood or to sign up for his “5 Things I Wish Someone Would Have Told Me About Hollywood” go to


Connectivity – A Vision of the Future

Sometimes I have to remind conference attendees, groups that I speak with, or even clients that digital content and digital distribution are a lot more than just music.  When we consider the amazing growth around music, however, it is easy to get stuck there.

But we shouldn’t. Digital goes far beyond songs and iTunes and singles and lockers, it goes past movies and downloadable books and content, it’s way bigger than anything we could have imagined five years ago, and I have no doubt that five years from now will showcase something else that’s beyond what we might imagine today.

Recently, at the 2011 MRC European e-Commerce Payments and Risk Conference, Mitsue Venture and offered up some mind blowing statistics and projections that anyone in the digital space should be aware of.  I’ll include their video here, which is featured on their website itself and on YouTube.  (It’s 7 and a half minutes long, but stick with it if you can, it goes fast.)  Below the video, I’ll highlight some of the more amazing statistics and projections that they offered.  My personal favorite bears special attention however, simply in regard to web users, traffic and connectivity.  It’s this:  Web traffic generated by only 20 homes in 2015 will be greater than the total traffic of the Internet way back in 1995.

Please enjoy the video, and as always, if you have any feedback, your comments are most welcome.


(Source: Mitsue Venture and

More consumers will access the Internet by mobile devices than by desktop or laptop by 2014.

2015 forecast of annual global mobile data traffic (75 exabytes) is equal to 19.000 million DVDs

Mobile-only Internet population will grow 56-fold up to 788 million by the end of 2015.

In 2015 mobile devices will exceed the home PC base installed.

500 million mobile using mobile health Apps in 2015.

In 2015 revenue mobile Apps will be an amount near to $40 million.

Social Networks revenues will grow more than 4-fold from 2010 to 2015.”

It is expected that in 2015 it will exist 2,5 Internet connected devices per inhabitants worldwide.

Yes, the bottom line is that digital is the brave new world, and we are the forefathers of what it becomes. Whether we’re in the music industry or any industry, we need to be ready for the digital revolution to completely renovate how we do business and how we meet our customers’ demands.

To your success.

Kelli Richards, CEO, The All Access Group, LLC

Source:  Mitsue Venture and


Cloudy Weather at Apple, Then and Now

It will come as no surprise to anyone that Apple’s stock will rise the moment Steve Jobs takes the stage later today.  By any estimate, Apple is worth billions – with or without Steve Jobs – but like it or not, Apple is not a democracy.  It is an autocracy.  It is a company carrying out the vision and changing the world, all according to the dictates of its leader, Steve Jobs.

I know something about this personally, albeit from a distance.  I worked for Apple for over ten years.  And yes, my claim to fame is that I worked in music.  In fact, I launched the focus on music that led the Music and Entertainment initiatives during my 10 year tenure there. The tragedy of that story, for me, is that it was during what I call the “dark days” at Apple, when Jobs was not sitting on the throne, lobbing ideas faster than the technology could keep up with him.  It was when the helm was run (and run into the ground) by others, with the phrase, “Et tu Brute,” hanging in the air.

I can remember saying to anyone who would listen that the only hope for us was somehow if Steve Jobs came back to Apple.  Nobody believed he would, of course.  He was running not one, but two companies by that time.  Surprising everyone, however, he did come back. Sadly, one of his first moves was to trim off as much as he could; to focus on the fundamentals in order to turn the company around, and my department was part of those cuts.  But turn it around he did.  Even though it meant a big career shift for me, I’d have to say that almost every single project Steve Jobs created, once back at Apple, was the right thing at the right time.  Quite simply, he has a passion and keen sense for what the consumer wants.  In my opinion as an insider AND an outsider, it never would have worked without him.

Here’s the coin flip on that one.  He’s built a Martha Stewart or Oprah type of empire, one that may not work without him on the throne.  Let’s look at the biggest example to date. The iPad.  When the iPad came out, Steve Jobs literally, single handedly changed a lot more than how people used computers or exchanged information.  He literally changed the economic structure of the publishing industry overnight, by his own design, just as he had previously done with music, film and TV – and nobody got a vote.  The technology is in place …and the consumer will now drive what comes next. Publishing companies will either get on the bandwagon, or run the risk of being left behind. It’s just that simple.

And with all of the controversy around clouds and lockers, especially in the music industry, Jobs has again stepped into the ring with a technology that consumers will trust.  Yes, some would say that he’s behind the curve – that lockers and clouds are already available, but it is the trusted brand of Apple that will bring clouds out of the status of rebel and into the accepted mainstream.  With Steve Jobs carving out legitimacy for a niche in the digital industry that is long overdue, perhaps music will finally stop bleeding revenue.   And Apple?   Well, as any good cloud knows, the sky’s the limit.


Kelli Richards, CEO of All Access Group





Join Me in June for a “Fireside Chat” with the Leading Minds in Branding, Coaching and

I’m pleased to share with all of you that my weekly “All Access Radio” Show has developed a strong and loyal following!  Over 20,000 downloads in just a few months.  I’ve been graced to interview some of the top digital visionaries and leading voices in the music and technology industries, as well as some great voices in the music and entertainment industries, including Finbar O’Hanlon, Hollywood Producer, Gary Goldstein, Media Futurist Gerd Leonhard; the President of Rafelson Media (and well known songwriter) Peter Rafelson; and entertainment technology visionary (and one of the sharpest minds in digital music) Jim Griffin. That list continues in the upcoming weeks.  I hope you’ll be able to tune in during June as I interview:

Monday 6/6 – 5pm Pacific TimeLibby Gill, CEO of Libby Gill & Co.

Branding Guru, Libby Gill is an entertainment industry veteran. Libby Gill spent 15 years heading public relations and corporate communications as senior vice president at Universal Studios; and vice president at Sony Pictures Entertainment and Turner Broadcasting. She was also the PR/branding brain behind the launch of the Dr. Phil Show.  A widely acclaimed speaker, Libby has delivered keynote speeches to organizations including Microsoft, Disney-ABC, Cisco Systems, Comcast, the US Travel Association, The Conference Board and many others. She is also the author of the best seller, “You Unstuck – Mastering the New Rules of Risk Taking in Work and Life.”

Monday 6/13 – 5pm Pacific TimeTerry McBride

Terry McBride is the current CEO and one of three founders of the Nettwerk Music Group, which includes Nettwerk Productions (Canada’s largest independent record label), Nettwerk Management (artist and producer management), Nettwerk One (publishing), and Artwerks (graphic & fashion design). Nettwerk has corporate offices in Vancouver, Boston, Los Angeles, Nashville, New York, Hamburg and London. Since its inception, Nettwerk has released over 500 different albums and sold over 150 million albums worldwide. In the past few years McBride has spoke at dozens of international conferences about advances in digital technology, intellectual property rights and the future of music distribution. Terry has twice been awarded the Pollstar Industry Award for Personal Manager of the year for his work with Sarah McLachlan (1997) and Avril Lavigne / Coldplay (2002).

Monday 6/20 – 5pm Pacific TimeAlan Cohen

Alan Cohen is a respected keynoter and seminar leader for professional meetings in the fields of personal growth, inspiration, holistic health, human relations, and achievement of work/life balance. He conducts Life Mastery Trainings around the world, and is the founder of All About U., a university without walls dedicated to higher learning for the higher self. Alan is a faculty member of Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, and has appeared on national radio and television, including Good Morning shows around the nation. His seminars have regularly been broadcast via satellite on the Wisdom Channel.  Alan is the author of 24 popular inspirational books and CD’s, including the best-selling The Dragon Doesn’t Live Here Anymore, the award-winning A Deep Breath of Life, and the classic Are You as Happy as Your Dog? He is a contributing writer for the New York Times #1 bestselling series “Chicken Soup for the Soul,” and his books have been translated into 24 foreign languages.

Monday 6/27 – 5pm Pacific TimeIan Miller, CEO of The Brand Practice

Ian Miller is the CEO and Founder of The Brand Practice LLC, a business and brand strategy consultancy. Ian Miller is an expert brand and marketing strategist with 30 years experience in building rapidly accepted/competitively advantaged brands. A recognized expert / lecturer in Ingredient Branding, Ian Miller has led the creation and global launch of the ingredient brand, NutraSweet, and worked closely with 50+ partner brands including Diet Coke and Diet Pepsi. Ian has applied this expertise to the successful growth of the Splenda brand and similar launches in consumer electronics, pharmaceuticals, retail and grocery.  For 10 years Ian has lectured and authored and founded a successful business/brand strategy/design company based primarily on his Rocket Branding strategic and insight research techniques. Additionally, Ian has taken on partnership and leadership roles for RightPoint, a fast growing digital technology and marketing firm with several fortune 500 clients.

So please join me each week as I host an intimate “fireside chat” with some of the leading minds in technology and digital music and media.  You can find my entire library of recordings at as well as some personal interviews where I share about my own experiences over a twenty plus career in music and tech.  See you there!

Kelli Richards, CEO, The All Access Group, LLC




Can MySpace Save itself by Porting into Facebook? Social Media & Digital Music.

Yes folks, Myspace Music has finally brought in an app that will let artists transfer their digital music content from Myspace into Facebook under a new “Music” tab. You can check out the program here.

Gratefully, this app includes streaming everything: music, photos, videos, events, etc.  With the global domination of Facebook continuing – and showing no signs of slowdown (yet), Music was one of the FEW remaining holdouts on MySpace…  MySpace still remains prime real estate, with over 14 million artists housing profiles there, but even that had begun to erode at the speed of light.  After all, the audience just wasn’t there any more.

This new Facebook app will allow artists to port digital music and other content from MySpace over to Facebook and manage one profile, which will show up on both Facebook and MySpace, and will have the added benefit of attracting audiences and traffic on both platforms.  This could prove to be a real problem for some of the other social app newcomers – but at this point, it just seems like a good solution to the millions of tunes lost in space on MySpace.


This is a very brief look at a topic I have covered comprehensively in a 50-page ebook. If you would like to be on the waiting list to receive this ebook (and be offered a special discounted cost), please register here. (select eBook Pre-Order)


Kelli Richards, CEO, The All Access Group, LLC



God Only Knows. Minefields and Memories…

I was recently speaking to one of my clients about high points of our careers, and I wanted to share one with you all.

I’ve had the chance to work on some really amazing projects over the years. I got to be part of the team that launched music at Apple, I’ve helped produce the PollStar Awards show year after year, with my good friend Steve Macfadyen (see our recent interview), and I’ve been part of the team on some amazing, very private, celebrity gigs.

These are often private fundraisers for a celebrity’s own foundation or choice pick charity. One of these was the “Open Hearts – Clear Mines” Adopt-a-Minefield benefit concert given by Sir Paul McCartney and Brian Wilson, where they joined together and sang, “God Only Knows.”

The concert and the song definitely live in my mind as one of the most moving and inspiring events that I ever participated in. Although there isn’t any video from the event to really speak of, there is a snippet of it in an Access Hollywood interview, speaking with Sir Paul and host, Jay Leno, about the event. (See below.)

As an event Producer and Celebrity Wrangler, it’s events like these that become knots in the thread of one’s life. I’m proud to have been part of that moment. To donate to Adopt-a-Minefield, go to

Kelli Richards, CEO, The All Access Group, LLC

Karma-Chameleon. The Fast-Changing Metrics of Digital Music

Music Industry Reviews

The changes in the digital music world continue to inspire a lot more than fear – they’re creating connections on every level, minute by minute.

It’s great to see the Billboard Music Awards getting so much attention on traditional media, but the truth is that their rankings simply don’t mean what they used to.  Long recognized as the industry standard, it’s no secret that the on-demand player and purveyor of music (and ranking) is now YouTube, one of the biggest creative disruptors of the digital music age.

Google has literally jumped on that bandwagon this week, releasing the “YouTube 100” – which tracks viewers and usage across “official music videos, user-uploaded videos and viral debuts, and uses this data to provide a holistic view of song popularity.”

Google’s YouTube 100 joins the ranks of many other services judging popularity, views and downloads in the music industry. And believe me, they’re measuring everything right down to your shoe size.  Facebook Fans, Twitter Followers, Vevo views, blogs and soon, mobile messaging lists.  Digital Media Wire quoted, YouTube Product Manager, Chris LaRosa, as saying, “Not only does the YouTube 100 give props when fans make original videos for popular songs, it also captures YouTube’s one-of-a-kind musical diversity. YouTube users get into music as fans and original musicians, and our new chart gives the community a better way to find the most engaging music on YouTube.”

As far as metrics go (and come and go), this is definitely one for our industry to watch closely.

Kelli Richards, CEO, The All Access Group, LLC


Personalizing Lyrics – One Amazing, Creative Way to Personally Rock The Fan Base

As a true lover of technology, as well as a coach in both the business world and in the digital music space, when I come across a tech solution that changes the course of a musician’s business and revenue stream, and builds a better fan base – well, let’s just say it’s always a reason to celebrate.  As the music industry has been pummeled over the last decade, hit with punches from outside and inside of itself, creativity has turned out to be the number one solution to surviving – and thriving – the ever changing landscape.

Enter Skip Haynes. Skip was the singer and guitarist for the band Aliotta Haynes Jeremiah.  Like a lot of bands, they worked hard and had one or two semi-hits.  In their case, the hit was a song called “Lake Shore Drive” that got a ton of mileage around it’s subject, Chicago, the home town of the band.  Over time, “Lake Shore Drive,” became a sort of local anthem, belted out at bars and college events and thought of fondly by Chicagoans everywhere.

Haynes, now 63, is one of the true creative disruptors.  He has held onto the rights to that song for the last forty years, and thanks to the digital music revolution, he’s come up with a mind blowingly simple idea and turned it into a very real revenue stream.  Pay attention folks, this is definitely a plan to model if you’ve got the know how, the time (and the rights to a good, recognizable piece of music).

For a fee, Skip Haynes will personalize his much beloved, “Lake Shore Drive,” to you – or your mother, or coach, or kids. Thanks to the portability of digital music, Haynes will sing the name of the subject, digitally splice it into the master of the song, and sell it to you for thirty-five bucks (if you want the CD — if the digital MP3 is good enough, its only $30.  You can then download it your iPod (or whatever), send it to your friends and family, put it in a digital Birthday Card.  Whatever.  It’s yours.  Personalized just for you.

Haynes recently told CNN contributor Bob Greene, that he’s sold hundreds of these customized songs –primarily through word of mouth and a couple of websites (including his own:

In addition to the obvious revenue stream this could mean for aging rockers or new bands, this is also a strong way to create a very real connection to your most ardent fans.  And that, my friends, is the real benefit of the digital music revolution – it makes reaching your fans as easy as click, splice, love affair.  The revenue is great, and seeing the innovation of a solitary creative disruptor at work is inspiring, but the opportunity to create a once-in-a-lifetime connection to the fan base is definitely not to be missed.

I would love to hear what you all think about this topic.  Feel free to comment on my blog at or on my Facebook Group Page.

Kelli Richards, CEO, The All Access Group, LLC


Search Resources

Topic Areas & Guests


Join our mailing list

For insights on industry trends, and for details on special projects/events. We respect your time and your privacy.

By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: . You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact