BMI’s “Speed Dating For Songwriters” Rocked YouTube in New York City


(L to R): Mike MacAllister, Jojee & Julie Hardy at BMI’s “Speed Dating for Songwriters” event at the YouTube Performance Space in Chelsea Market in NYC on April 11th, 2017. Photo Credit: Kim Lorraine Photography


The BMI “Speed Dating for Songwriters” concert was recently held at YouTube’s performance space in New York City. Although “Speed Dating for Songwriters” began three years ago, this marked the first collaboration with YouTube.

A little background- “Speed Dating for Songwriters” was introduced to foster creativity among some of BMI’s most promising NYC-based songwriters, producers, and artists whose paths may not have otherwise crossed. It’s a unique program that has created a sense of community among BMI’s NY-based songwriters, who have formed close friendships and working relationships as a result. It is arguably one of the most successful, efficient and beneficial initiatives that BMI has started in the past few years. It is not, of course, an actual dating event but is an intimate networking event for a hand selected group of BMI’s most promising up and coming songwriters. “Speed Dating for Songwriters” takes place a few times a year in NYC and LA.

Here’s how it works- 12-15 participants get acquainted, listen to each other’s music, form collaborative partnerships and obtain instant feedback, all in a short amount of time. After the event, the songwriters are separated into groups of three or four, and tasked with writing a song, which they will perform approximately six to eight weeks later in front of their peers and BMI executives.

L: BMI songwriter Natalie Duffy

The recent YouTube partnership was two-pronged- First the songwriters were given an invaluable tutorial from a YouTube executive on how to increase fan engagement and viewership on the platform. Second, the songwriters were able to perform the songs for the first time in front of a live audience at the YouTube space in Chelsea Market. These performances were filmed for the songwriters to share on their YouTube channels.

“Speed Dating for Songwriters” has spawned some bona fide success stories. A perfect example would be BMI songwriter/producer Andrew Seltzer. Through the program, Seltzer was introduced to up-and-coming indie singer/songwriter Maggie Rogers and R&B singer Mickey Blue, both of whom he is has since collaborated with. The program also paved the way for BMI songwriter Mike Campbell. Through a contact he made at “Speed Dating for Songwriters,” Campbell was put in touch with pop siren Daya, and went on to co-write her Billboard chart-topping single, “Sit Still, Look Pretty.”


Celebrating over 76 years of service to songwriters, composers, music publishers and businesses, Broadcast Music, Inc.® (BMI®) is a global leader in music rights management, serving as an advocate for the value of music. BMI represents the public performance rights in nearly 12 million musical works created and owned by more than 750,000 songwriters, composers, and music publishers. The Company negotiates music license agreements and distributes the fees it generates as royalties to its affiliated writers and publishers when their songs are performed in public. In 1939, BMI created a groundbreaking open-door policy becoming the only performing rights organization to welcome and represent the creators of blues, jazz, country, and American roots music. Today, the musical compositions in BMI’s repertoire, from chart toppers to perennial favorites, span all genres of music and are consistently among the most-performed hits of the year. For additional information and the latest BMI news, visit, follow us on Twitter @BMI or stay connected through Broadcast Music, Inc.’s Facebook page. Sign up for BMI’s The Weekly and receive our e-newsletter every Monday to stay up to date on all things music.


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