Built around something that exists everywhere—music—a new economic development opportunity has taken hold in cities across America and throughout the world that is helping create competitive, attractive, and equitable places. A city that understands its music economy can leverage it in a variety of ways—to create jobs, bolster talent and skills, enhance tourism, and importantly, to make communities better places in which to live, work, and play. Growing this type of economy requires engaging across all areas of the city to understand its strengths, where the gaps and barriers lie, and what policies and investments ought to be employed to enhance music’s role and impact in the city and its people.
On Thursday, February 23, Brookings Metro hosted an event exploring music’s role in placemaking, focusing particularly on Huntsville, Alabama, whose wide-ranging audit led to the opening of a world class amphitheater, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, whose community development initiative, Fire in Little Africa, has received global acclaim. Speakers representing both cities discussed how creating robust music ecosystems can transform and improve cities in myriad ways.
Enjoy this “Songs About Cities” playlist comprised of submissions from our audience and curated by Sound Diplomacy!