What We Do

Photo by Ignacio Quintana

Photo by Ignacio Quintana

Unite

We bring together all parts of the local music ecosystem including artists, performers, music professionals, and venues. Our local culture is far more collaborative than competitive. We are an interdependent system, and the more we connect, the more successful we’ll be.


Economic Data Collection

We are conducting the first-ever census of the Portland music industry through our MusicPortland Profile Drive and an Economic Impact Study in partnership with PSU and the City of Portland. By quantifying the impact music and artists have on our city for the first time, we can leverage the resulting data to better inform economic development planning, public policy, business development and music tourism initiatives. Fellow music cities like Austin, Nashville, and Seattle have already gathered this data resulting in major policy wins and economic growth.

Community Building

As our city grows, it is harder to retain the close-knit musician communities or to find the music businesses and resources you need. MusicPortland will be an information hub to promote and host professional development and networking opportunities. 

Monthly Meet-ups and Gatherings

We’ve hosted nearly 30 gatherings by genre, by industry sector and our exciting First Monday Meetups for the entire Portland music industry that includes networking, professional development and updates on the positive changes happening through our collective efforts. Our First Monday Meet-ups regularly bring together more than a hundred local music professionals (musicians, producers, labels, managers, publicists and more). As a representative organization, all of our gatherings provide opportunities to share your views, concerns and ideas for how MusicPortland can support you. Join us on the next First Monday.

Collective Action

We are powerful together. As an example, in early 2019 over a hundred members of our community (including musicians, industry professionals, and fans) stood together to oppose a policy that threatened local venues and affordable housing, through City Hall protests, letter-writing gatherings, and social media. Being united, informed, and engaged, we can have an enormous impact on this city.

 

Upcoming Gatherings

 

photo: James Kemp

M3.jpg

Defend

We identify and oppose threats to any part of the music ecosystem, from musicians to venues to music businesses. We advocating for policies, regulations, and programs that support music in Portland.


MUSIC POLICY COUNCIL IN CITY HALL

We established Portland’s first-ever Music Policy Council at City Hall, giving the music community a voice in city policy, practices, and regulations to make Rose City more music supportive. this was done with direct support and encouragement from Commissioners Fish, Eudaly and Hardesty.

MUSICIAN LOADING ZONES

We worked with Fair Trade Music PDX (AFM 99) and city leaders to enact Musician Loading Zones at 16 local venues and will soon expand the pilot program to 12 more venues. To use these Loading Zones, fill out a Profile and then apply for a permit here.

PROTECTING VENUES AND RECORDING STUDIOS

We worked with a coalition of organizations to put a halt to the city's irrational crackdown on unreinforced masonry buildings that threatened 30 music venues with closure. More than 100 of our members participated in protests and letter writing. Commissioner Hardesty and PBEM are now revisiting how to make our city and buildings safe with fresh eyes. We remain in the conversation.

In addition, large scale construction and housing infill has a direct impact on venues and recording studios. We are working with the city planning department to explore embedding the Agent of Change Principle into building codes, which has been effectively applied in other cities to reduce the impact of building development on existing venues. This principle would require developers to make necessary changes (such as soundproofing) to existing businesses.

BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

Various organizations around the city offer compelling economic development programs. MusicPortland will facilitate engagement of music businesses and bands with these resources.

EXPANDING AVAILABLE REHEARSAL SPACES

MusicPortland is involved in the implementation planning discussions for the Affordable Arts Space resolution to provide new, secure and affordable spaces for the arts, including popular music businesses and rehearsal space.

RE-IMAGINING PERFORMANCE compensation MODELS

Working creatively with city government, venues, OLCC, musicians and others, MusicPortland seeks to evolve new models for live performance compensation. There are many interesting ideas from other cities for new economic models for music performance; to improve the payscale for performers, increasing the caliber of performance (and its positive effect on food and drink sales) without increasing costs for the venue. Through collective and inclusive conversations with venues and artists, MusicPortland would like to find new and mutually beneficial ways to improve the calculus for all parties.

DEVELOPING A CASCADIA MUSIC CORRIDOR

MusicPortland is working with Vancouver and Seattle to establish a resource to make it easier to tour throughout the region. Cascadia Music Corridor will provide resources to help performers target and engage with appropriate venues, standardize the booking process, and encourage new partnerships in the region. Ultimately, the network would include performance spaces in Oregon, Washington, Idaho, B.C., and Alaska.

PROVIDING ARTIST GRANTS

MusicPortland plans to develop a direct Band Grant Program to support local musicans with funding to be applied any way they choose. This will happen as soon as the funding streams are established.

Musician Loading Zones (pictured at McMenamins Al's Den)  Photo: Vortex Music Magazine

Musician Loading Zones (pictured at McMenamins Al's Den)
Photo: Vortex Music Magazine

Music Policy Summit with City Hall leaders  Photo: Jason Quigley

Music Policy Summit with City Hall leaders
Photo: Jason Quigley

Protests at City Hall to oppose URM legislation that threatened historic venues and affordable housing

Protests at City Hall to oppose URM legislation that threatened historic venues and affordable housing

 

photo: Beth Olson

betholson-credit-Pickathon-Adia-Victoria.jpg

Amplify

Portland’s independent music scene has already earned acknowledgement from around the country and the world. With coordinated messaging and programs, our individual successes can unite to power a collective brand that benefits everyone. We seek to boost our identity as a music city; locally, nationally, and beyond.


PORTLAND’S FIRST GEAR FEST

We are organizing the first annual PDX GearFest, an expo of dozens of Portland's boutique music manufacturers on November 10th at Polaris Hall. Find out more.

PATRON PROGRAM

As new companies relocate their headquarters to Portland, they are well aware that the cultural allure of our local popular music scene is a key advantage to attracting and retaining talent in a very competitive marketplace. We will be developing a MusicPortland Patron program to engage these companies to support the local music economy, and to provide their employees with new ways to become active participants in the local music scene. These investments will pay for on-site performances by local artists..

MUSIC TOURISM

We are in discussions with Travel Portland to promote music tourism. We are discussing a roadshow of Portland musicians and businesses to promote our music culture to key foreign markets. Closer to home, we are discussing creation of a permanent, self-guided walking tour with plaques to map and celebrate events in Portland music history.

COLLECTIVE BRAND

MusicPortland is working to developing a collective Portland music brand that celebrates our independent spirit. Media relations and a focused campaign to promote the collective will reap rewards for all participants.

"LISTEN LOCAL" 

Like the successful "Buy Local" program, "Listen Local" is a planned program to embed purely local music into area businesses, with promotion of local shows and media for sale. Like Buy Local, it is both a promotion of the quality and variety of our local music, and also a clear economic investment in our local economy.

MUSICPORTLAND FAN ENGAGEMENT PROGRAM

MusicPortland aims to promote our collective musical asset and to draw more local and visiting fans to live shows. The MusicPortland Fan Engagement program will provide benefits based on the number of shows fans attend and new ways for venues to engage with their frequent customers.


If you support our work, join us!

BECOME A CONTRIBUTING MEMBER

We need resources to advocate for you. If you support the work we’re doing, please consider becoming a Contributing Member of MusicPortland. MusicPortland dues are a fully tax deductible business expense and available at a sliding scale to fit your means and support of our mission. Our initiatives are influenced by our members. You tell us, we listen.

Come to an Upcoming Event