Streaming Spotlight: Jaclyn Siu — The New Music Experience
Machine learning, digital immersive experiences, gaming, XR, online communities — how can the world’s most exciting emerging technologies help you and/or your artists tell stories and share music?
The creative possibilities are endless at this intersection of music and technology. In ‘The New Music Experience’ streaming session, Jaclyn covers topline ideas, insights, and concepts across various categories to get some inspiration flowing and open up some new possibilities in this new frontier.
A Hong Konger, New Yorker, and now Berliner, Jaclyn has lived and breathed creativity and technology in the world’s most exciting cities. She has worked with a wide range of artists, from the superstar (JAY-Z and Rihanna at Roc Nation) to the indie (at YouTube-channel-turned-indie-label Majestic Casual); led two immensely successful tech-forward NYFW seasons at fashion label Rebecca Minkoff; and is now managing Partnerships at innovation production company UNIT9. She has spearheaded and produced creative digital marketing campaigns that have reached tens of millions of fans around the world, and knows first-hand the impact and excitement of building new technological and digital experiences in the music and creative realms at large.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and why you’re interested in what you do?
I’m Jaclyn, and I manage client partnerships at UNIT9, a global innovation production company. On paper, my role is relatively straightforward: It’s pretty much client relations-meets-sales-meets-consulting. However, the best part of being at UNIT9 is that I’m able to be part of the discourse around the most exciting technologies and help push those boundaries together with brands, agencies, and clients looking to do something cutting-edge.
I come from a very multi-faceted background. I graduated with a double degree in Journalism and Political Science; I started my career in fashion and transitioned into music, all intersecting with digital and tech at almost every turn; I’ve tried my hand at entrepreneurship by co-founding a company with one of my best friends; and I’ve been fortunate enough to have lived in some of the biggest metropolitan cities around the world and picked up many different languages. It’s incredibly exciting for me to be able to bring all of those skills to a place as welcoming and as forward-thinking as UNIT9, and work on projects and have conversations (with colleagues and clients alike) that excite and inspire me every day.
What is your involvement with shesaid.so?
Currently my involvement has primarily been around the talk “The New Music Experience” I did on shesaid.so’s Instagram Live, but hopefully when the situation around COVID-19 stabilizes, I’ll be able to scale up my involvement and become more active in the community. I’d love to make myself available as a friend or resource (if you will) to fellow women and female-identifying/gender non-conforming folks. The world needs to hear from us and see what we’re capable of.
What do you hope to achieve with your talk on ‘The New Music Experience’, and why do you think it is important for those watching or the music industry in general?
My main inspiration for the talk was to encourage a rethinking of the traditional music experience through the use of innovative technology. Having spent over half of my career in the music industry, I’ve come to know the ins and outs of this world very intimately, and my goal was to at least spark a couple of new thoughts and conversations around changing the status quo, beyond just being a passive response to COVID-19.
I’ve always been fascinated by the way technology can enhance and elevate the human experience, and being at UNIT9 has given me a unique insight into how we have the power to shape these technologies into what we need them to be. I wanted to at least shine a light on what could be possible: Immersive and experiential technology can feel so foreign and abstract to many people in the industry, and I wanted to do my part in helping demystify it a bit.
Could you take us through a few of the key points from your talk (Perhaps 3 points?)
It’s undeniable that a big part of a live music experience is all the intangible “stuff” — things like the atmosphere, the “vibe,” the screaming and excitement and immediate kinship with your fellow music lovers that you can’t quite distill into words. The focus of my talk was essentially: How do you take those indescribable elements, and take them into the digital sphere? How do you break through the noise and get creative with online storytelling?
In my talk, I give an overview of everything from animation and CGI to XR (mixed reality) and motion capture, interspersed with personal and professional anecdotes from my own life and career, and my take on how I believe these elements can shape what I call the “new music experience.” Everything I talk about is something that I have firsthand experience with and that I’ve personally seen successful results from, through UNIT9 or otherwise — and most importantly, that I’m excited about.