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SOCAN representatives were front and centre at the very first Creative Entrepreneur Summit, which aimed to provide emerging artists and industry professionals with opportunities to hone their entrepreneurial skills, while providing them with the tools and resources needed to turn their talent into a sustainable career.

Powered by SOCAN Foundation and presented by TuneCore, the online summit, held from July 20-29, 2021, explored music publishing, distribution, marketing, entrepreneurism, legal fundamentals, financial management, mental health management, and more, through hands-on workshops, keynote presentations, and panels.

Michael Asante, SOCAN A&R Representative, Rap and R&B, led a “SOCAN 101” session that explained what SOCAN does, how to maximize royalty payments, the benefits of membership, and how the organization supports its members. Michael was accompanied by Arun Chaturvedi  of the Songwriters Association of Canada, and Tonya Dedrick of the Screen Composers Guild of Canada, while a Francophone version of the session was led by SOCAN A&R Executive Sara Dendane.

Marie-Michèle Bouchard, SOCAN Generalist, Communications & Marketing, participated in a panel, “Digital Distribution 101: Staying Independent & Keeping Your Masters.” The participants discussed building a fanbase, growing a catalogue, and earning revenue by working with a digital distributor.

SOCAN Foundation Executive Director Charlie Wall-Andrews presented the opening keynote speech, “The Rise of the Artist Entrepreneur,” about navigating a complex music ecosystem to disseminate talent to a broader audience. She used a case study to de-mystify the entrepreneurial mindset for artists, and explore pathways to build and maintain sustainable livelihoods as music creators.

In a “Publishing 101” panel, Margaret McGuffin of Music Publishers Canada, Mishelle Pack of Sony Music Publishing Canada, and Cheryl Link of peermusic explained what a music publisher is, and what they do, while a French version of the session was presented by Daniel Lafrance of ÉDITORIAL AVENUE.

There was also an “In Conversation” interview with Haviah Mighty, moderated by DJ Agile, in which she discussed the creative, entrepreneurial hustle, hard work, and determination that have allowed her to climb the ranks of the Canadian hip-hop and R&B scenes, while garnering international attention, and staying true to her core artistic principles.