Music Update

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Amsterdam

Over spring break I visited Amsterdam for the second time this semester.  This visit was a lot different from the first time, as it was about 50 degrees warmer.  Because of this, we spent most of our time there at Vondelpark, the biggest park in Amsterdam.  Because of the amazing weather, everyone was outside, spending time in the sun.  The park was packed with people everyday, so we explored a lot of it to find a prime place to hangout.

Another thing we did while in Amsterdam that I really enjoyed was the Van Gogh museum.  Van Gogh is an amazing artist, and it was really cool to see a lot of his works in person.  Van Gogh’s self portraits always interest me, and here are some I was able to see:

Some of Van Gogh’s famous sunflower paintings were also at the museum, here is a video the museum website offered about his works during this period:

The thing I love most about amsterdam was the biking culture.  The city is SO biker friendly, I have never seen so many bikes.  Every street has huge bike lanes, and it just seems like a better/easier mode of transportation around the city.

MY VERY OWN PODCAST

After learning about podcasts in class, our next task was to create our own.  For our podcast we decided to talk about our travels from this semester.  We just sat around having a casual conversation about our favorite places and why, and it actually went a lot better than I expected.  I am not a fan of recording myself, or just of the general situation we had to be in to create the podcast as I feel I am awkward.  But here it is! Hope you like it!

PODCAST

The Podcasting Phenomenon

Above are the two most important podcast pioneers.  The First is Adam Curry, an ex MTV presenter, and the other is Dave Winer, a program and blogger and also the creator of RSS.  They were friends since the early 90’s and they would discuss how to develop better systems to download and offer audio files through the internet.

So what does podcasting really mean?  It is a very controversial term but, most of the pioneers conclude that podcasting comes from: IPOD + BROADCASTING… (Do we really need an IPOD to subscribe or to listen to a Podcast? Of course not, but Curry had the IPOD on his mind while creating the whole structure.

What are the benefits of podcasting?  Web syndication, automatic processes, from push medium to pull medium, no gatekeeper, and portable, and a new channel to communicate.

Marketing 2.0

In class we learned about marketing 2.0.  I found this extremely interesting, as I have interned for a social media marketing company for the past two summers, and this is an industry I am interesting in having a career in.  First we discussed that because of the internet, it is now vital that we pay attention to the increasing availability and use of social media.  43% of social media is in the marketing department.  A company should have the goals of listening and ideally, engaging in conversations that are happening across all social media platforms. (How to use facebook and twitter as marketing tools)

Because social media media marketing is still a new concept that hasn’t been completely explored, companies are still making mistakes when it comes to their tactics of marketing.  These seven main mistakes are: 1. Poor management of expectations, 2. Errors in the establishment of objects, 3. Using social media as a sales channel, 4. Poor definition of the target, 5. Low business involvement, 6. Do not use the tone of language to the social media, and 7. Underestimating the resources required.  Although there are some brands who are doing it right, check out the top facebook brands below:

Corporate blogging is one aspect of social media marketing that we discussed, where corporations create a blog to reach a specific objective.  In a corporate blog people write as an official or semi-official worker or partner of the enterprise.  The author is absolutely connected with the organization and everyone can notice it.  But, there have been situations in the past where corporations have misused blogs, which in turn mislead their audience.  An example of this was in November of 2006 when Sony created a blog called, “All I want for Christmas is a PSP,” which was supposedly written by a guy named Charlie.  Someone soon discovered that the blog was registered on a domain property of Sony, and they were forced to admit and apologize.

Although social media is a new form of marketing, companies are willing to take the risks, because they are aware of the incredible benefits it may have.  Just the fact that 175,000 new blogs are registered everyday and 1.6 million posts are uploaded everyday, should be enough for a company to get their brand out there as well.

Coachella

Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival is a huge music festival put on by Goldenvoice, at the Empire Polo Fields in Indio, California.  The first ever Coachella was held over two days in October of 1999.  25,000 people attended the two day festival, with performers such as Beck, The Chemical Brothers, Tool, Rage Against the Machine, and Jurassic 5.  After not making any profit from this event, Coachella was put on hold until 2001, when it was moved to the month of April, to avoid the scorching heat the desert.  As the years went on, Coachella began to build up more and more acclaim, and now is a world famous event, bringing in huge acts every year, and is now a three day event.

I have been attending Coachella for the past 5 years now, and it is by far my favorite music event.  This year the event took place in April, which I obviously missed due to being in Spain!  Here are some videos of performances from Coachella 2011:


A stage at Coachella, with an insane background of palm trees and the sun setting

My best friend Sydney, basking in the heat of the Indio desert.

Berlin

Last weekend I went to Berlin, Germany, and it is now my new favorite city in Europe!  I was really excited for this trip, as I had always wanted to go to Berlin as I had heard it has an amazing music scene/nightlife and it was a very fashionable city.  We really lucked out as it was the second weekend that Berlin had actually been pretty warm, so everyone was outside enjoying the rare sun.  The first day my friend Colleen and I spent all day walking around, exploring whatever we stumbled upon.  We walked through Tiergarten park, which is the biggest park in the center of Berlin.  After exploring for a while on our own we met up with a friend who is currently living and studying in Berlin, and she took us to a beer garden.  It was really cool to see actually beer gardens that were permanent structures, unlike ones I had seen at music festivals and such.

Our next day in Berlin we went to the famous East Side Gallery.  This was really cool, as I was not expecting it to be how it was.  It was not a typical gallery, as all of the art work was outside on huge walls, and it was really cool street art.

Across from the gallery we spotted a creepy circus and decided to explore inside, until we got too creeped out.

Our last day in Berlin was by far my favorite.  We spent the entire day at the Mauerpark flea market.  We had been looking forward to this for a while, as Barcelona does not offer any promising flea markets.  The market was very cute, and had so much stuff.  I got a really cool leather backpack, which I had been looking for for a while!

Also there were really cool beer gardens throughout the market, with lounge chairs and sand floors.  On the other side of the park there was a huge amphitheater packed with people.  Curious as to what was going on we walked over there, and realized that people were doing karaoke.  My friend who lived in Berlin told me that the Karaoke guy was famous, and on nice days he brought his sound system to the park.  It was really cool to see people from all over the world get really into it and also sing songs in english.  We spent over an hour watching people, good and bad, and had a really good time.  After my weekend I wondered why I never considered studying abroad in Berlin, until I remembered that up until recently it had been freezing, and very snowy.