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Eric Stensvaag

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Venture Capital in the Fitness Space: A Candid Chat with CEO & Founder Jeff Yasuda

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Oct 15, 2019 12:28:19 PM
Jeff Yasuda founded Feed.fm alongside Eric Lambrecht and Lauren Pufpaf, with the belief that music integration and licensing should be easy for any business, whether digital or brick-and-mortar. Early adopters like American Eagle Outfitters, Anheuser-Busch, and other consumer marketing companies found a legal and efficient way for customers to stream music within their online environments.

In 2017, Feed.fm began delivering music for Fitbit’s in-app fitness programs. Nearly three years later, we wanted to get Jeff’s perspective on venture capital in the fitness space, which has grown to dominate our music as a service business.

Feed.fm has worked with many of the top fitness companies, so you’re in a unique position to connect the dots. Tell me about some overall trends you’re seeing in fitness.

Fitness is an incredibly hot space right now. Consider 1) the amount of financing that has taken place and 2) the recent Peloton IPO. VCs like seeing a market where companies can exit, either via acquisition or offering shares on a public exchange. When there’s acquisition and companies going public, it’s indicative that the business segment—in this case fitness—is healthy, and investors want to participate in the upside.
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Topics: Music streaming, Music as a Service, Fitness

Make “No Excuses” for a Lousy Workout Soundtrack: 1000s of Exercisers Vote on Their Top Workout Songs

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Aug 21, 2019 2:37:48 PM

The past five years have seen significant growth in the fitness tech sector, transforming how many people exercise. One thing that isn’t changing? The need for fresh, inspiring music, which has been shown to enhance athletic performance for professionals and amateurs alike. A detailed study by the Sports Medicine – Open journal found that people work out 28% longer per week when they have the right music.

As a B2B music company, Feed.fm is on the front lines of this fit tech groundswell, handling music licensing, curation, and integration for more than 40 different fitness customers. The specific exercise programs offered by our customers (Fitbit, 8fit, Tonal, Mirror, and others) differ greatly. That said, there are a few workout music stations that are always winners regardless of activity.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music streaming, Customer Engagment, Fitness, Music for wellness

The 2 Yoga Music Mixes You Should Know About

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Apr 23, 2019 2:35:08 PM
According to the National Institutes of Health’s 2017 NHIS, the popularity of yoga is growing dramatically, with 14.3 percent of U.S. adults practicing yoga in 2017 compared to 9.5 percent in 2012. Some of this growth can surely be attributed to the stressful political climate. Another contributing factor is the increased accessibility of yoga: practitioners can choose from a great variety of online/in-app classes in addition to those offered at yoga and fitness studios.
 
With more people making yoga part of their daily lives, it’s no longer a given that classes will be practiced in silence. There are plenty of silent yoga options for those who would choose only John Cage’s “4’33” for their mix, but many students find that music enhances their practice. A Google search for “yoga music” yields countless results, and tons of recommendations are also available on Spotify or your streaming service of choice.
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Topics: Music streaming, Music as a Service, legal music, Customer Engagment, Music as content, Fitness, Music for wellness

10 Valentine's Day Songs for Single People

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Feb 14, 2019 12:46:00 PM

Valentine’s Day, Valentine's Day, what are you doing for Valentine's Day? If you're single this year, it's a good bet the answer is "nothing." As Saturday Night Live reminded us with this cheeky song from last weekend's show: "Valentine's Day is for lovers."

We decided to flip the script for this year's holiday, creating a list of 10 Valentine's Day Songs for Single People. And since we're in the business of music streaming, here's a handy 35-minute mixtape with our picks from the past two decades of hits. Unattached? No problem!

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music streaming

Tips for Recording Crisp Workout Audio

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jan 25, 2019 1:42:15 PM

With more and more people migrating from the gym to digital fitness programs, there’s an impressive quantity, quality, and variety of fitness classes available on demand. As the fit tech boom continues, we’re frequently asked to provide input on both the legal side of music integration and the technical aspect of audio recording. The diagram below simplifies the decision process and summarizes the advice our Head of Curation (and Sound Engineer) typically shares.

Perhaps it’s intuitive that audio quality and music are as important as the image, lighting, and visual elements of your finished product. If not, here’s some advice from professional sports photographer and videographer David Bracetty, who makes a living based on how things look: “…I can’t recall a single comment on video quality, [but] I do recall commenting on sound and being able to hear, so get a good mic."

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Topics: Music as a Service, legal music, Fitness, Music for wellness

Holiday Gift Guide: 12 Great Music Gifts for 2018

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Dec 7, 2018 12:20:52 PM

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…to be a music lover. Sure, we may find our ears shutting down from the barrage of holiday music, and we can quibble about which version of “White Christmas” is the best (it’s still Bing Crosby’s). But in terms of gift giving and receiving? December brings a chance to catch up on all the latest music swag. Our 12 Great Music Gifts list represents a cross section of price points, eras, and genres.

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Topics: Retail, year in review

Music is Changing Behaviors & Re-Wiring Brains

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Oct 18, 2018 3:08:27 PM

“Music is an important part of our physical and emotional well-being, ever since we were babies in our mother’s womb listening to her heartbeat and breathing rhythms.” -- Franz Wendtner, Clinical Psychologist, University (General) Hospital Salzburg

It’s an intuitive, increasingly acknowledged fact that music is a powerful motivational tool. Perhaps you play music in the morning to help you wake up, enlist the radio when driving to help stay focused and alert, or listen to music during your workouts. Over the past half-century, countless studies have shown the positive correlation between music and activities as diverse as exercise and shoppingMusic’s ability to help us perform better and “stick it out” is a behavioral result.

What’s lesser known: music can also deliver long-term physiological results, re-wiring our brains in a process known as neuroplasticity. Neuroscientists offer the following shorthand for this re-wiring phenomenon: “Neurons that fire together, wire together.” Research has shown music’s ability to increase neuroplasticity, and there are many innovative, music-powered solutions to age-old medical problems that affect all of us.

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Topics: Fitness, Music therapy, Music for wellness

Introducing Tiffany Sirikulvadhana, Head of Customer Success

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Oct 4, 2018 2:51:06 PM

We’re thrilled to introduce Tiffany Sirikulvadhana as the newest member of our team. A customer success veteran with six years experience, and a former plaintiff’s attorney, Tiffany is uniquely qualified to serve as our Head of Customer Success. Tiffany describes Feed.fm as her “dream company…I get to work with exciting customers using music to drive stronger results. And as an attorney, I understand the intricacies of music licensing and know Feed.fm is providing an essential service to our partner companies.”

After graduating from Loyola Law School in Los Angeles, Tiffany spent the first four years of her career practicing law, with an emphasis on disability rights. Her skillful client advocacy prompted a friend to lure her into the tech world, as customer point-person for a mobile startup. As someone who’s always been interested in tech and consumer trends, Tiffany developed a strong track record working at a number of SaaS companies.

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Customer Engagment

30 Best Nine Inch Nails Songs -- Nine Inch Nails at 30 Years

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jul 31, 2018 12:51:44 PM

In November 1988, Trent Reznor recorded a 9-track demo of songs that formed the basis of Nine Inch Nail’s first album Pretty Hate Machine. As fans of the band know–and this album bluntly states–“Nine Inch Nails is Trent Reznor.” During the 1990s, Reznor established himself as one of the most admired musicians of his generation, a reputation he’s upheld even while developing an impressive side-career as a film and television composer.

With the arrival of Nine Inch Nails’ acclaimed Bad Witch last month, it’s an ideal time to celebrate the band’s 30th anniversary. Below is my list of the 30 best Nine Inch Nails (NIN) songs. But first, a little background on Reznor and NIN…

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Topics: Feed.fm Blog

Music Festivals Roundup: Summer & Fall 2018

Posted by Eric Stensvaag on Jun 15, 2018 1:10:26 AM

Wowza! In my 3rd year assessing the music festival scene on behalf of Feed.fm, I feel confident stating that there’s never been a better time for live music omnivores. While creating the following roundup of summer and fall music festivals—28 in total—I was somewhat dumbfounded by the quantity and variety of high-quality offerings across the country.

A few high-level observations before diving into the chronological list below:

  • While the traditional “summer” music festival continues to explode its seasonal confines, promoters still steer clear of winter. So die-hard fans will get a short breather come January…before the Ultra Music Festival (Miami) jumps the gun again in early spring.
  • Music festivals are popping up and disappearing with surprising frequency, perhaps indicating the market is becoming saturated. Examples include the failure-to-launch Fyre Festival (Bahamas); the one-time-only Desert Trip (Palm Desert, CA); and FYF Fest (Los Angeles) which unexpectedly canceled its 15th annual event.
  • Which artists lay claim to the most headliner slots this year? Of the festivals we’ve surveyed, The Weeknd is the clear winner with 6 appearances. Janet Jackson, Arctic Monkeys, Erykah Badu, and Florence + The Machines have 3 appearances apiece.
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Topics: Feed.fm Blog, Music Business