A Conversation with Music Pioneer Scott Welch

I would have never known Scott Welch had it not been for an intersection of traditional and social media last spring. As fate would have it, a LinkedIn post searching for opportunities to branch out led to a reply from a fan of my radio station, WNCW, who put me in touch with Scott for the Google Hangout episode of Lingua Musica posted in this article.

Myra Chapman of All Indianz saw my post, and as a listener from Greenville, SC, was familiar with me on the radio. She reached out and offered help in sourcing her extensive network of artists and music professionals for being on my new series of video interviews and roundtable conversations.

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Myra put me in touch with Scott Welch, whose list of accomplishments and experiences reads like a highlight reel of milestones in the music business, with a successful foray into the medical field with ChromaGen for good measure. I was both excited and a bit nervous: would he be a high-strung type A personality? Would I be able to engage him and guide the conversation? And what to talk about? There was an overflowing cornucopia of life story here.

For example, Scott has managed the careers and development of multi-platinum recording artists Alanis Morissette, LeAnn Rimes, Steve Perry, Paula Abdul, Collective Soul, C & C Music Factory, and others that have sold a combined total of over 100 million albums worldwide.

Welch was involved with the marketing launch and the IPO of MP3.com, which was one of the first digital music websites and the launch and development of Stubhub, an online ticketing company purchased by Ebay for $320 million. He is also a co-founder of Highnote, a real time web search company and is on the board of directors of Musicians On Call, a nonprofit that brings music artists to the bedsides of patients in healthcare facilities.

Darius Rucker and Randy Houser perform for a hospital patient through Musicians On CallLuckily, Scott has a warm and patient personality and was easy to talk to both in setting up the outline for our show and on camera once it began. I wanted to draw out some sage advice for music artists, professionals and fans in the "wild west" kind of industry we find ourselves in now. How can you promote yourself best? What pitfalls can we avoid? And what about the future of the music industry? I read a quote of his from a 2002 interview which intrigued me: “The whole financial structure that involves artists and record labels has to be changed, and it will change....I would go back to focusing on the music and quit worrying about the corporate structure, worrying about how many units you sold, etc. It’s got nothing to do with art and art is what makes our society liveable.” These were some of the topics we drew from on the show.

We aired the interview live on my Google+ page and have the YouTube videos for you below. While the conversation was lively, our internet connection often was not. After a good start with no hiccups, some of our strands in the world wide web seemed to tangle and we had to start the show over again, so there are two parts to our conversation.

Your comments are welcome here and you may feel free to contact Scott directly as well at scott@swelchmgt.com. We hope you enjoy this episode of Lingua Musica, where music is the universal language!

 part one

part two