Over 3500 (and counting) musicians, composers, songwriters, publishers and licensors around the world (19 countries) have found a portal to the new world of music creation. MDIIO. To say that this platform dedicated to music is robust is an understatement. It is art and science; the convergence of creativity, AI and machine learning, as well as a toolkit for a sector starving to find opportunity and protect its copyright and royalty interests.
Founded by Grammy and Academy Award nominated songwriter/producer, Justin Gray and 2-time E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year nominee, Curtis Serna, MDIIO (the face of Songistry, Inc.) was launched as a music asset/copyright management and marketplace. We caught up with Curtis in Calgary, Alberta. The first thing we wanted to know is how these two music minds met.
“Justin learned of my success in creating and bringing award winning software to market and being nominated twice for Entrepreneur of the Year, as well as being an active tech investor. Justin flew to Calgary where we met and Justin shared his vision for protecting the interest music creatives, and democratizing access to licensing opportunities. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Justin over the past two years and I’m glad our paths have crossed as he’s been a solid partner. He’s very humble and gracious, considering the success he has achieved. He’s a high integrity individual that truly cares about the music industry and the fact that many music creatives are not awarded the opportunity to achieve success because of a lack of access or not being at the right place bathe right time. The music industry is tough to break into for creatives and Justin (and MDIIO) want to make it easier for creatives to earn a living within the music industry.”
With over a million new songs uploaded to the web daily, the two of them recognized the gap: missing copyright and metadata details. This gap is costly to creators; 46 million of them in fact who did not receive royalties, as much as $2.5 billion in 2019. In order to advance MDIIO as an entity that can protect and help the interests of the music industry globally, Songistry, Inc is looking for $2.5 million USD to invest in MDIIO. Serna explains why.
“We are currently in due diligence for major funding which allow us to attract additional talent in key music markets (LA, NY, Nashville) and to build out our marketing and support teams here in Edmonton. We also plan on expanding our artificial intelligence features that will provide further competitive advantages as well as enhance the user experience for our subscribers. We plan on enhancing our mobile experience as well as expand our intellectual property. We will also be investing into translating MDIIO into Mandarin in order to leverage Justin’s success in Beijing (having achieved twelve #1 hits with the biggest Asian artists in China).”
So, does the concept work elsewhere? Well, consider this. MDIIO landed an $8000USD licensing opportunity from SONY Interactive who was looking for music to be used in their 2018 MLB game. MDIIO posted the project and eager MDIIO subscribers (1500 at the time) pitched their music. Three weeks later, MDIIO curated and submitted 38 tracks to SONY. A Canadian music creative saw their music selected and licensed. Important here is that the musician retained all master and copyrights to his music. This was a simple licensing transaction.
MDIIO impresses with its technology and resources. For Serna, it’s more about the value proposition. “Based upon my experience of bringing new technology to market, I would state unequivocally that it always boils down to the value proposition and the people involved. We have a grand vision of protecting the interests of music creatives, and we are fortunate to have terrific technology. But technology in itself is not enough – it takes an exceptional team to execute. Justin is literally a globally successful music producer and songwriter and is a visionary. Our CTO is exceptional and truly cares about the MDIIO community of subscribers. Delivering an exceptional, memorable customer experience is engrained into our organization and part of our corporate culture. We could not accomplish what we have without the phenomenal team working with us.”
The MDIIO website says, “Pitch. Promote. Track. Earn.” It’s working as filmmakers, video game producers and just about anyone out there looking for music are gravitating to MDIIO in search of the best in original music. Just as important, music creatives are getting more than exposure. Their music and the value of that music are protected. In a world where music independents are struggling, MDIIO offers a secure home and plenty of doors to open.
And that is —dare we say it — music to everyone’s ears.