As the film Florence Foster Jenkins, the true story of a rich heiress who dreamed of becoming an opera star, highlights: money really helps artists, good or bad, become stars. The more relevant question for today’s young musicians and artists revolves around: how does art, and those who produce it, actually make a living in the modern economy? The business of art is complicated to say the least. A recent NPR piece about the economic challenges facing musicians today, helps connect the dots for the modern performing artist. Railing against piracy, dreaming of becoming Taylor Swift, and counting on the charitable sector no longer are options.
The business of music, even for the local guy, is grounded in navigating the modern, complex social media engines that drive our modern tech-based economy. Just like any other small business owner, artists and those who support them, need legal tools and infrastructure to create sustainable sources of income in the modern economy.
Take Neel Sharma, who in many ways is the quintessential millennial artist. An engineer by training, Neel now describes himself as a global story teller. He ventures across the world, moving from place to place every few months. Neel says this lifestyle:
Allows me to immerse myself culturally, while organically finding ways to build community and curate projects with the local people. Nothing is planned beforehand. These various projects serve as my method for global story telling across different artistic mediums
How has Neel managed to sustain himself amidst his worldwide artistic adventures? Not through old-fashion record sales. Faced with difficult questions regarding everything from copyright law to capital raising to business structure, he has been able to connect with like-minded professionals who have removed obstacles from his path.
To keep themselves afloat, millennial artists tend to have their hands in every cookie jar available, including Spotify, SoundCloud, Kickstarter, commercials, video games, and just about any medium that helps them gain exposure and funding. But these platforms can be confusing and complicated. Modern artists need allies who can guide them through the rapidly evolving regulatory maze of the digital world. Fortunately, this guidance is readily available. Socially-minded entrepreneurial artists, like Neel, are not only finding this legal guidance at JUX, they are finding lifetime partners and trusted advisers.
Attorney Kim Lowe helps artists in both the for-profit and nonprofit sectors, navigate the complex legal and business issues faced by the modern social enterprise. Utilizing decades of legal, business and leadership experience, as well as her nationally recognized unique cross-sector expertise, Kim helps business and thought leaders create, fund and operate for-profit enterprises, benefit corporations, cooperatives and/or nonprofit organizations within the millennial artist movement.