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Exclusive Interview: 4QFor imeem CEO Dalton Caldwell

This week's 4QFor (Four Questions For) features imeem's young founder and CEO Dalton Caldwell answering the same questions we put last week to Nimbit founder Patrick Faucher.

Imeem_dalton_caldwell_2 Q1. What major changes in the music industry do you foresee over the next year?
Over the next year, everyone will be a lot more serious about new business models in digital. There’s a lot more going on out there already- look at what we’re trying to accomplish here at imeem as well as the disruption caused by the recent Radiohead album launch. It’s time for people to get the memo that digital is about more than ringtones and iTunes.   

Q2. How are you and your company preparing to benefit from these changes?          
We strongly believe in ad-supported music and imeem has been the most successful in proving out the model.  There is a tremendous market opportunity for ad-supported music to work on a large scale.  We could easily see a reality where total digital revenues from advertising dwarf download sales.

Imeem_3 Q3. What excites you?
I’m excited to prove that ad-supported music really works and that the site has been able to scale to the large growth over the past year and service over 18 million users. At the end of the day though, I still really enjoy music and being around music and still get chills when I hear something good.  My parents taught me to do what I love and what I believe in…so here I am.

Q4. What’s next?
A major label executive once told me that the future of the music industry is and always has been in the young people trying to build something new in reaction to the old.  He cited folk, punk and rap.  For young people and digital music, the genie is out of the bottle, we are living in the post-Napster world. Teenagers today don’t even remember the old Napster… a 14 year old today was 7 years old when it was shut down. Technology disruption happens time and time again to established industries, but no matter what, the world keeps turning.  People and industries always adapt and that’s what will happen in the music industry as well.