Thank you Mr. Chairman and Mr. Ranking Member, members of the task force ? thank you all for this opportunity to testify before you today on an issue so critical to the future of this country, the issue of Net Neutrality. I?m a rock singer, so I have some experience getting in front of people and speaking my mind, but to be honest, you guys aren?t really the demographic I?m used to dealing with. So this is very exciting for me.
It’s a real honor to be here. I’m a rock singer, so I’m used to speaking my mind in front of a mic, but to be honest, this isn’t the crowd I’m used to. The reason I’m here is because my band OK Go has had the good fortune to be one of the first to truly find success via the internet. I probably don’t need to tell you our story, because I’m assuming you’re the FloridaDeb23 and TechRick2000 that I always see on our message boards…but I do wanna show you a few of our videos to demonstrate how important an open internet is to musicians these days. read more
WASHINGTON, D.C.? Hot on the heels of the release of a collaborative digital EP, irrepressible pop-rockers OK Go and funky New Orleans brass act Bonerama joined forces for a sold-out performance at Washington D.C.?s 9:30 Club on Saturday, February 2. The bands ? who originally met at Future of Music Coalition?s annual Artist Activism Camp in New Orleans ? played energetic sets to raise over $8,000 for New Orleans musicians, including Mardi Gras hero Al ?Carnival Time? Johnson and Sweet Home New Orleans.
OK Go and Bonerama?s new EP, You?re Not Alone, will be available exclusively on iTunes on Tuesday, February 5. All proceeds from the collaboration will go to benefit musicians like Al ?Carnival Time? Johnson, who lost his home and possessions in Hurricane Katrina. read more
WASHINGTON, D.C.â€” On February 2, OK Go and Bonerama will join forces for a benefit at Washington, D.C.’s 9:30 Club. The show is in support of You’re Not Alone, a digital EP the two bands put together after OK Go spent the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina recording with the New Orleans funk-soul band deep in the city’s Upper 9th Ward. One hundred percent of the proceeds from the EP â€” available exclusively at iTunes â€” will benefit Al “Carnival Time” Johnson and other members of New Orleans’ music community who are still struggling to rebuild their homes and their lives in the wake of Katrina. The five-song mini-album will be released on February 5 â€” Mardi Gras. read more
NEWÂ ORLEANS, LA â€“ Last week,Â two benefit concertsÂ raised over $6,000 for Sweet Home New Orleans â€” a coalition of non-profit organizations that helps find affordable housing and provides rental assistance for the cityâ€™s musicians â€” and Big Easy music legend Al â€œCarnival Timeâ€ Johnson.Â The concerts were the culmination of FMC and ATCâ€™s annual Artist Activism Camp, which brings together established and emerging artists to discuss best practices for artist advocacy. For two days prior to the concerts, the benefitsâ€™ performers toured New Orleans, visiting the Ninth Ward and hearing from some of the cityâ€™s musicians about the efforts to revitalize their music community.
On February 2, Bonerama and OK Go will meet for another benefit, this time at Washington, D.C.â€™s 9:30 Club. The show is in support ofÂ You’re Not Alone, a digital EP the two bands put together after OK Go spent the second anniversary of Hurricane Katrina recording with the New Orleans funk-soul band deep in the cityâ€™s Upper 9th Ward. One hundred percent of the proceeds from the EP â€” available exclusively at iTunes â€” will benefit Al Johnson and other members of New Orleansâ€™ music community who are still struggling to rebuild their homes and their lives in the wake of Katrina. read more
Would the band OKGO (you know the guys from the treadmill video) exist if net neutrality didn’t exist?
That’s the question that was at the heart of a presentation given this afternoon at the "Music, Technology, and IP Policy Day" by Future of Music Executive Director Jenny Toomey. Toomey laid out how OKGO managed to go from relatively unknown indie band to Grammy Award winner, Jay Leno playing, mass market conquering super band.
OKGO started its climb to stardom by filming a $20 video of the band doing a fun, but slightly dorky, dance to one of its songs. The band posted the video on YouTube, and asked the general public to submit their own video versions of the dance. The video inspired a raft of video responses that featured everything from lego men to topless men performing the dance.
OKGO followed the original video with its now famous treadmill video that pushed the band to a new level of stardom. As Toomey pointed out, it’s hard to imagine an OKGO existing on an Internet where big telecoms are setting up tollbooths to charge web content providers for faster service.
Toomey gave her definition of net neutrality: "It means that artists retain more control," Toomey said. "They don’t have to maintain the relationships they had to before to reach their audience."