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Going Viral: In Your Dreams | SXSW 2021

Mick Fleetwood
British musician, founding member at Fleetwood Mac
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SXSW 2021
March 16, 2021, Online, Austin, USA
SXSW 2021
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Going Viral: In Your Dreams | SXSW 2021
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About speakers

Mick Fleetwood
British musician, founding member at Fleetwood Mac
Ole Obermann
Global Head of Music at TikTok

Michael John Kells Fleetwood (born 24 June 1947) is a British musician. He is best known as the drummer, co-founder, and leader of the rock band Fleetwood Mac. Fleetwood, whose surname was merged with that of the group's bassist John "Mac" McVie to form the name of the band, was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1998

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Specialties: Digital Media Executive with strong background in digital rights licensing. Extensive experience managing business development and sales teams globally. Skilled in transformation management. Experience working for major content rights-holder, start-up digital service provider, and leading e-commerce platform. Deep knowledge of audio and video streaming business models and key performance indicators. Experience in building out and overseeing analytics infrastructure and teams to drive insights from streaming data sets.

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About the talk

Today's musical artists crave two things: global virality on platforms such as TikTok and career longevity. Mick Fleetwood has achieved both. Sustaining over 50 years in the industry as a founding member of Fleetwood Mac, Mick was also part of TikTok's biggest viral trend of 2020. TikTok has become the music industry's best promotional tool since launching; breaking artists, new music and giving new life to catalog hits. Billions of video creations are set to music and its leaned-in and engaged community is driving chart success. TikTok’s Global Head of Music Ole Obermann has been at the heart of TikTok’s ascent since joining in 2019. Join Mick and Ole as they talk music, how to sustain a career, discovering new talent, the role of technology in shaping trends and culture, and what today’s music stars can learn from Mick’s decades at the top. #TikTokDreams

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SXSW dedicates itself to helping creative people achieve their goals. Founded in 1987 in Austin, Texas, SXSW is best known for its conference and festivals that celebrate the convergence of the interactive, film, and music industries. An essential destination for global professionals, this year’s online event features sessions, showcases, screenings, exhibitions, professional development and a variety of networking opportunities. For more information, please visit sxsw.com.

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Hi, I'm will Overman Global head of music to Tik-Tok sanks so much for tuning into this feature session. I'm very honored to present to you today Mick. Fleetwood, who you just saw skateboarding to the Fleetwood Mac song Dreams, which was originally released in 1977 Mick. Welcome. It's a real honor to have you here. Good to see you in. This is exciting and the great great memories. And now, I'm a whole different view of what's Happening. Yeah. Yeah, I'm excited to talk to you about

that. You know, we've learned that take Cox Community is really passionate about music and we seen the platform become a home where artists and fans can interact with one another and really Thrive what is the most iconic moments in 2020. What is this moment that unfolded where Nathan Apodaca was skateboarding? He was drinking his Ocean Spray cran, raspberry drink and he was sitting. So tell me, you know, what was that moment? Like to see The Rebirth of that song? I'm in to see it become is viral cultural moment. I think probably

one of the most talked-about moments of the entire year. Last year and hit like a submit hit. Like an emotional, emotional tidal wave at the musician and part of a advancement with my fault for so many years was introduced in a new way, you know, Alex has a blue totally spontaneous, totally joyous celebration a moment that it in Breaded on music, the music that I made some last 50 years with with Fleetwood Mac on everyone, that it was beyond belief and Anna. An instant feeling of this is just

super great and his energize on all the expression that you mentioned it before. We went on the program is it is it was so connected to the person Nathan. I know it was nice and you know how we know each other. Now that wouldn't have happened. So the old magic on the folded hands for me of course it was super special and I'm sleep with Matt sing the song being reintroduced at such an incredible level that was beyond anyone's imagination and that's the whole thing that that's unfolded with with what I'm saying. on Tik Tok the It's

very creative and I need some. Some people may not even know that that being created become intrigued and they stay and, and the whole thing grows out of it. So that was a mama to be remembered. Probably one of the most profound moments for me. And in many, many, many, many years connected to our music. I remember attending the 2018 music tears person of the year benefit and Fleetwood Mac was being honored and you get guys gave a wonderful performance, tremendous guest stars.

I remember Stevie Nicks, she gave a really passionate heartfelt speech. And she kept saying to the audience, she said, I really want, we really want as a band for our Legacy to live on. We won Your children to listen to Fleetwood Mac and we want their children to listen to sleep with Matt and I thought about that so many times while being in the music at Tik-Tok last year that we were actually playing a really big part in making that a reality and end this younger audience, you know, many of whom were not at work. When this album was originally released, during that

song, they were being introduced to it. I didn't get a very special way. So yeah, for me was also very special moment. So I know this is fantastic and you're reminding me of a lovely young lady. Lenny Gardener who sang her version of Dreams? A few months ago. I'm not that to me. Spoke volumes in terms of where this thing has gone and not only have I found out she's a really actually incredibly Talent. Assistive light of what we're talking about one thing, led to another and another and another

and it's not actually so much about Fleetwood Mac dreams, but once you accept in my world, that was amazing and fantastic. What it really triggered, is our conversation that it is happening. Now in such a profound, how do you reach an audience and how do you become something? I think. Number one is remaining open to know. I'm not 17 years older than 20 years old and I'm 70 years old. It didn't matter What mattered was as an artist. You see all of these things coming

coming to pass and you see people that may never have thought about picking up singing, that might have led. And probably for sure has led to them actually progressing and going forward. And I'm being part of a creative situation, not really became the joy of all this this adventure a little bit about The impact of you think the tick tock can have music business and how that's going to evolve. Maybe I can just give you a little reflection of my own on what I'm seeing

a man and I'm sure our audience would be really interested in hearing, you know, how you think about that. And how it, how you will be using Tik-Tok or how you think that that might impact future generations of musicians relating to in our conversation. It is exactly that from me to you, which is a narcissist, the music became part of it. You have all of the audience to participate is a collective on presents the music, their ideas, that moments that often connected to a whole collage of other people, having fun with one one idea,

which is soup But to me, I suppose, if I should stop asking you a question would be, the seems to be so much Vision that you must be thinking about it. Take talk about how this has become so powerful and in the greatest of ways that you or your guiding a ship to unfold in so many ways. And my question would be, as I do have a vision, or do you have a sense of where this is going for you but I can imagine the wrong. So many Fantastic connective parts of this may be for me, haven't been sort of, but

you might be thinking of a lovely thing to know that I've been part of a little part of a beginning of something of a vision for you. Using Tik-Tok in 2018. I was working for Warner Brothers, your record label, the time and I became absolutely fascinated by it. And I've been working for two decades and record labels. And one of the things that we always focused on was, how can we use technology to create a better connection between the artist, or the song, or the album, and the sand? How how

do we help? You know, you said Knology to make sure that we're connecting the right music with right fan and I realized, as I was scrolling through Tik-Tok these first few times that this was a marketing platform. Unlike anything that the music industry had ever seen because because it was the creators, were the ones that the creators on the platform where the ones who got behind a song. And when they Put their weight behind it explode overnight and it could go from an absolutely unknown artist and song to

a funeral suit Global Superstar smash overnight. And I think that's a very very profound thing that we are still. You're really trying to hold it on when it comes to how we all speak to help the music industry into work with the music industry. And also to bring the Creator's on Tik-Tok, you know, joy and and allow them to be creative and safe environment. So I think I think that's an important place to start from you. No end. And what I see happening now is that that Creator Community is even

bigger and they're getting even more creative. And and the unsigned artists are really starting to find a home on Tik-Tok and they're realizing You just need, you know that lightning to strike once that one Creator finds your song decides if they're going to make it part of the creation, the video creation that they put up my neck and kick off a career, right? And so I think where we are right now, I'll stop there because I, I would really be curious to hear how was your current using Tik-Tok. I've seen some of your videos that

you've posted, but it would be really interesting. I didn't understand how you're using Tik-Tok of this time, all of this lovely romance in the way of a bin connected, through the song, Dreams of sensibly. And, and I'm totally getting a whole communication with people who write on. We try to keep up as much as we can, but one of the, one of the lovely things, a sled, a whole relationship. But I'm now World War 1 song. Let's do another pin. In terms of Fleetwood Mac,

wild animals with comparisons, with Regal, what's with this being the communication about people, finding out the office that we were inspired by an in Fleetwood Mac's has become a real education on a reminder of all of the music, you know, cuz it has meant something that really is is the backbone of all the musician. Me speaking about what it what is it that you can do? Which is you just said in terms of your world, you're already realizing what a precious thing that you are holding. You know, I took to allow of not allowed to

have it on Open Stage. The people can expressed in all sorts of different ways. I'm, I understand. We're talking about music being a catalyst. I think that's the most precious thing that they come comes out. First food for me and relating to two people on a more personal level, you know, and seeing what they write, see what it said and up, that is part of this whole story about how do we use this platform in the reach of the flap? For a hundred million people who spend lots of time, on Tick, Tock,

every single day, hopefully being entertained, hopefully, being able to create themselves. And I think about how do we enable more creativity, right? And so, you know, I am curious how you think about that. So, many of the barrier, barrier is used to be in place, when music was being created are no longer in place because we now have a new technology that makes it much easier to create music and collaborate on music. Even if not in the same place, like

almost a barrier of a psychological barrier that comes down when you can create music on a platform like Tik-Tok, does it enable you to maybe overcome a fear of stressing yourself creates creatively for the first time or maybe for the hundredth time? You know, that that's something we think a lot about and I think it'd be really interesting to get your point of view. A musical created for set your whole life, how do you would think about that? Imagine the band is Tik Tok,

my my my weld open. When I became part of a band and I think that that is, what is intrinsically happening, right from the beginning, whether someone is a seal is the joining of weather, does this feedback there is objectivity, as we had fun with that. I'm going to do better instantly sometimes. You wait, sometimes you do it again can you become? I need to see other people reflecting for me. I can say is a musician would be when I turn around on stage. Look at Sage on the thief who plays bass and Fleetwood Mac. What is that? I'm rude boys. For me, I would I

would always say remember what the real essence of of how this thing started and how it affected people is the magic. And if you never lose that me to a next question, which is if you think about these young creators of musical creators, who are there, they're all over the world right now. Hopefully, they're on Tik-Tok, hopefully, they're, you know, kind of overcoming any fear to share their art with the tick, tock Community. What, what advice would you give them or what? What Reflections on your own career? Would you share? That

might help them in a retrieve whatever it is that they want to achieve. Musical aspirations or perhaps special musical career. Sometimes when especially when you're young but in truth you look bad. So I'm you're asking me who is 18 years old? But I feel like a child still and I still follow. My instinct is if it feels good and you're connected drive and strive for that. And if you're given a gift while you can perform a say, this is a stage that was talking about it and it truly is a stage back in the day. It would

be traveling theater group going around from town, to town performing, performing Fiesta, whatever it would have been that way back in the day. When your passes that would be as quick as possible, realize that you have something precious and be confident and and believe in yourself and believe in the fact that you have other people that feel exactly how you feel and that becomes something that is hot Tik Tok in an amazing way, which is a blessing, because being lonely with a feeling,

it is not always a great thing that you feel lonely with a feeling what is happening is people are not feeling lonely. That's feeling the other entities people are coming together, Wizard and throwing it into one, big Melting Pot. That becomes reflective of the real Essence is feel what you feel and don't be I ended up sharing what I had with all the people which is has been. My life has been really ostensibly with sleep with me before that. I've course I was with it a couple of times when I was learning learning my

Croft to sleep with matches is, is that family? Are you seeing a real patent so much talent is being presented? The, you can't help, but feel what can we do? Water water, the things that might lead to in a while guiding or being part of that guidance to two. Turn the world on to the tool this time around what what is happening in your world, with the creator of with just one creator that can get it moving and hopefully other creators then pick up on the song as well. And then use it in a video that they create creates this sort of exponential, of fact. And you

can find a very large audience and by the way of global travel around the world on Tik-Tok within minutes hours days. So you can find this massive audience what you think she is usually within days sometimes weeks, you see, those songs that are finding that popularity in that audience on Tik-Tok, they start to appear in the viral. Charts on Spotify and add. Sign in apple music in the big other streaming services. And at that point, you know, we really have a hit song that our hands because it has crossed over from

Tik-Tok, Tik-Tok famous in people's playlist and they're listening to the full-length song and hopefully digging into the discography of that artist. And, and discovering that artists today in a deeper way, I think almost equally important is that at that point, the song has become a cultural moment because that's one thing you see how well you know we make these hit songs on Tik-Tok or or the artist in the creators make them but they happened on Tik-Tok more than just it's a big song on

Tik Tok or Spotify rap music. It's now also a part of popular culture, you know, and, and that really is what Tik-Tok is becoming a platform for Is this popular culture, that's heavily based on music, but also very Visual and very creative 3-day it. It does not cease to amaze me how much creativity, some of these people. Some of these creators put into a 50 second video like 15, 20, 30 seconds, you watch it at a whole story has been told to you and you don't realize that you it's been 15 20 or 30 seconds. You think you've washed, you know, five minute or perhaps

even longer because I think you do. Those are all the types of things that we're really focused on intuition passion. We touch them I think right. But we started talkin about the whole thing is connected to a true expression passion. All of that, lovely stuff that description totally sets up. In a way, but I was trying to describe and it's, it's, it's really truly amazing. What what's on hand and that that's a very beautiful. Lovely story story would would be

going back to the games when we first started was a revitalizing of realizing, you know, we've had an incredible 3 last songs off a blessed. We've been really successful and it really seems like forever and who knows whatever? But it meant something about the 2018 music chairs events. And, and how Tik-Tok is reintroducing music to to have a whole new generation? Dreams, you know, was really the moment on Tik-Tok in 2020 but I was going back and looking

at some of the other amazing Legacy artist who had these kind of rebirth on Tik-Tok. And again, I think The Beached entirely new groups of fans. So weak, we had a big campaign with John Lennon up for his for his birthday. Literally billions of use of these videos. We had Prince and phony and we had Run DMC. We had Queen, we had Elton John, you know, so Legacy artists who have less such a mark in musical history a. But now, we're getting them in front of these seventeen-year-olds, twenty-five-year-old 30 year old

and that, and that means that means a lot to me personally to be able to contribute in that way. One of those things. Northern is complete sense but looking back which I'm able to do you turn around and go, right? It was all worth the time and having you describe the Retro effect of awesome, you just mentioned, Aspen part of that that's family. It is a huge leap forward. Really rephrase that that feeling you go right with everything that we did everything that maybe was still doing and maybe some at the stoplight. John Lennon. There is no more coming from him

Saturday, but you have that magic, you're talkin about. I know anyone. That would be close to him and if he was maybe saying he could say this, but my father would say it no matter what this was all it was worth something. Putting that. The Universal Music is all about that. Having this conversation can lead to go on Friday. I was talking about stopping over again. Boring everyone, but it it's really really magical and you're in the middle of that with you with your Tik Tok

tonight and what it represents. Some music, like I said to Nathan, I said that we had a personal conversation and I was relating about what this is. Do you know he's had so much many ways as possible change of life or change. The Rhythm, huge amounts of feedback and my client is said, I said, you know what, niacin Fleetwood Mac, I was you. That conversation about what it's meant as a musician reaching in our conversation here and realizing I'm being reminded of all music. That puts a

part of my life. That's been revitalized with with people that may may never have had that connection. So I'm I'm very grateful to you guys and go set on the whole premise of off Tik-Tok Live long. Make, I just want to say thank you so much again. We really enjoyed having the chance to talk to you about Tik-Tok, having the chance to talk to you about Fleetwood Mac and dreams. You know, this has been a song and the album rumors has been a big part of my life. I think I told you this already but we have a ritual in my home, where I'll be listen to the album every Saturday morning, with my children,

with my wife. So it's been a real honour to have a chance to talk to you. Thank you so much.

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Mick Fleetwood
Ole Obermann