One of the world’s biggest, monumental festivals is almost upon us again and Google are providing the hype before the date arrives.
Coachella is just days away and to get you in the mood for a week of festivities, amazing music, and fun in the valley Google have some fun additions for their Home Speakers. Google Home and Google Assistant are the perfect accompaniment for Coachella this year.
With your Google Home, Mini, Max or your phone’s Google Assistant you can say “Hey Google, talk to Coachella” and then:
Discover new artists: You know your must-see artists for the weekend, but this year’s lineup is flush with amazing acts that you may not be familiar with. This new feature allows you to discover new artists playing the festival, and gives you exclusive playlists to get you up to speed with the 2018 lineup.
Create your festival schedule: Once the artists’ set times are announced, you’ll be able to ask the Google Assistant what time your favorite artists are playing, then add them straight to the Coachooser app.
Get answers to festival FAQs:You can get performance times, travel info, what’s allowed into the festival and all that jazz.
Get the backstage experience:Whether you’re tuning in at home or in person at Coachella, you can listen to backstage interviews with some of your favourite artists once the festival begins.
Test your Coachella knowledge: Which artist got a surprise celeb kiss on stage during a 2015 headlining performance? Play trivia to test your knowledge of memorable Coachella moments and performances, and get excited for what may happen this year.
When you get to Coachella the fun from Google doesn’t end. Google have transformed some of the Ferris wheel gondolas into Pixel photo booths with transforming, colourful backdrops for taking the greatest selfies whilst you’re soaring above the festival.
Coachella’s YouTube channel will be live-streaming some of the biggest acts coming to the Californian festival including Beyoncé, The Weeknd, ODESZA, Post Malone, The War on Drugs, Kygo, Chromeo, Alan Walker, BØRNS, alt-j and many more. You can even watch in virtual reality with the VR180 livestream so it’s like you’re actually there at the festival.
“Whether you’re packing your bags for Indio or tuning in from your couch, we’ve got you covered.”
These days making it as an independent artist is totally achievable but that doesn’t mean it’s always easy – here are some tips for going on tour from artists who’ve done it themselves.
Going on tour is a massive step for artists in lots of ways: it builds your audience, it promotes your music, it helps you to connect with fans, its fun, and it can also be a massive source of income. As DIY becomes a better and better choice for musicians without the need for giant labels to spread the word planning a tour is totally do-able if done right.
Berlin-based hip-hop producer Walter Gross takes the approach of playing, and sometimes even staying, at “non-traditional venues”. He says: “You immerse yourself in local subcultures and meet the most interesting and gracious people. It reaffirms your love for humanity.” He emphasises that no venue should necessarily be off limits as you never know what one show could do for you.
Gross says book your tour with – “A map, a calendar, and whatever contacts you’ve got”. Find out where similar artists and artists your friends with have played, other bands tours are a great reference point and explore new audiences with similar tastes to what you’re offering – it’s the best way to build your music. Gross adds: “Brevity is key – boiling your sound and package down so it’s succint and coherent. People lose interest quick.”
Contacts and friends in the industry and nearby music scenes will likely be your biggest asset and the give-and-take that comes with these connections are what creates a strong music community. LA experimental rocker Sophie Weil helps bands around LA find tour venues and gigs through her own connections. She can make a post on Facebook, “Anybody played in Eugene, Oregon?” and get help from contacts around the country. She says: “This is happening everywhere and we’re all trading.”
When you’ve found somewhere you could play or hear about potential at a venue get in contact as directly as possible and make sure that you keep chasing it up until it is secured, or you know for certain whether they can do it. You want to finalise as early as possible, no-one needs a gig cancellation last minute. Knoxville jazz guitarist Mike Baggetta advises: “If the person booking the space doesn’t write back, write again. If they still don’t write, call.”
When it comes to pay Baggetta recommends centring certain dates around one bigger gig that can help fund the rest. “It’s all about the anchor gig. Something that pays well to cover however many shows nearby that don’t. A concert series or festival may kick in hotel rooms – it’s always worth asking.” Make sure any payment is arranged and secured beforehand, or at least set down in writing so that no venues can take advantage.
Likewise with accommodation you need to make sure that it is secured in advance. See what the venues and gig organisers can offer, they might have a space or provide lodging for you but if not you need to make sure you have a place to stay – preferably somewhere that doesn’t exhaust the money you just earned from that gig. Again contacts in the biz will be a massive advantage in this respect. Weil says: “Make yourself as little of a burden as possible. I usually give them a tape or shirt, or return the favor when they come to LA.”
Most important of all is looking after yourself and your gear, especially as you’re doing things yourself. Weir adds: “Enjoy yourself, but have your wits about you and listen to your gut. If you feel unsafe in a situation, leave. If you don’t have all your ducks in a row you are gonna get burned. The cliché of the lazy musician is a thing of the past. Just stay positive when things do go wrong so you can figure out a solution.”
Finding the best ticket prices is going to get a lot easier with TickX who’s new funding will help them spread across Europe.
British company TickX have built a business on letting concert-goers in the UK search all available ticket sellers for the best possible prices. It’s a valuable tool in a market which has become saturated with inflated ticket prices caused by aggressive middle-men (looking at you Ticketmaster), bots and scalpers causing escalating prices to see your favourite artists.
A new series-A funding round led by the UK’s largest venture-capital firm BGF Ventures brings £3 million in new funding to TickX. They plan to use their new funds to expand their services to “even more European countries” in the coming months as well as introducing cinema tickets to their searches and expanding the team to 35 staff members.
Their £3 million investment comes after the company turned down £75,000 in funding from the ‘Dragons’ in the investment TV show Dragon’s Den. The dragons requested a higher equity than founders Steve Pearce and Sam Coley were willing to accept. It worked out well for the duo as they then earned £750k in the months following from a funding round led by 24Haymarket.
CEO and co-founder, Steve Pearce said: “Over a million event-goers last year discovered that TickX is the only place they need to go to discover experiences and buy the best tickets. Now, our focus is firmly on international expansion and leading innovation in the multi-billion pound global experience market. The new funding round from BGF Ventures and our other fantastic investors will drive us towards becoming the go-to destination for experience-lovers across the world.”
George Mills, an investor at BGF Ventures, said: “We are both proud and excited to be backing Steve, Sam (Coley, the CTO) and the whole of the TickX team. We’ve been seriously impressed by their ambition and pace in building the company, and we’re confident that TickX will continue to expand and reach their goal of becoming the global go-to platform for discovering experiences.”
If you’re in Britain or the Irish republic you can check out TickX now and find the best deals for over 125,000 events around the UK: www.tickx.co.uk
Every act at this year’s Coachella has been revealed and includes everyone you could want from David Byrne to SZA, Tyler the Creator to ODESZA, Jamiroquai to alt-J.
Coachella has got to be one of the biggest festivals in the world, and if you don’t believe us just look at this year’s line-up. The festival is so vast that it takes place over 2 weekends with the same acts, just another chance to get the incredible Coachella experience.
This year’s line-up is incredible with artists old and new, near and far, spanning every genre imaginable. There aren’t many places in the world where you can bop along to rappers like Vince Staples and Tyler the Creator and then move on to watch the legendary electronic music pioneer Jean-Michel Jarre the day after seeing Talking Heads genius David Byrne.
Not just about music the festival also celebrates art with art installations set up by various physical artists. The music festival will take place in the Empire Polo Club in Coachella Valley in California in April. Tickets go on sale this Friday, January 5th at 12PM PST at coachella.com but they will no doubt be flying out so be quick!
Here’s the line-up in alphabetical order if the poster is too overwhelmingly impressive for you:
In an epic re-imagining of what Google Translate could be used for they’re going on a music tour around Europe.
It’s been 11 years since Google Translate first launched to help the world understand each other. An 11-year career is taking Translate on tour, exporting a Swedish band with shows being translated across 3 languages.
Google cite musical prominence from bands such as Abba, The Cardigans, producer Avicii and many more as evidence of the excellence in Swedish music. However it can be harder for foreign speaking artists to break in a very English-speaking dominated industry. Google Translate to the rescue.
The Translate Tour will see up-and-coming Swedish indie pop band Vita Bergen perform their latest single ‘Tänd Ljusen’ in 3 languages across 3 cities. Over the course of a few days Vita Bergen will visit London, Paris, and Madrid to perform in the 3 different languages.
It seems Google aren’t just trying to show off how well their translation software works, but also spread culture and show the extent of possibilities with Translate. Google will also be inviting people all around the world to tune in and watch the barrier breakdown as one Swedish band goes multi-lingual.
Google updated Translate’s system last year from a phrase-based translation which translated recognisable phrases. Now using their Neural Machine Translation it reads the entire sentence so it can account for context and grammar for far more accurate translations.
Google said: “Using this updated version of Google Translate, the English, Spanish, and French translations of the song were close to flawless. The translations will also continue to improve, as the system learns from the more people using it.”
Vita Bergen’s release event will be live-streamed today at 5PM CEST.
YouTube have partnered with Ticketmaster to offer tickets to gigs straight from their massive video platform.
YouTube is no longer just for watching live shows that you missed or want to reminisce over gigs you’ve seen, now you can secure your place at future concerts from the video site. A new partnership with Ticketmaster will see concert details and purchases implemented into YouTube.
YouTube say that they’ve been experimenting with ways they can offer tickets to fans on YouTube. Ticketmaster marks their first ticketing partnership and will see hundreds of artists offer tickets for their upcoming US tour dates. Tickets will show up on certain artists’ official music videos where a simple click will take you straight to Ticketmaster to buy tickets.
YouTube said: “YouTube’s massive fan base paired with Ticketmaster’s global roster of concerts and security of verified tickets means we can easily connect a fan’s discovery of music on YouTube to their ability to purchase concert tickets.”
YouTube have slipped into the music streaming sphere thanks to their music offering with video, providing a revenue source as well as a listening platform. Certain streaming services like Spotify have been advertising concert dates and tickets on their platform for a while now.
YouTube say that they are “just getting started”. Soon they will expand the feature to all artists with Ticketmaster shows in North America. They also say that they have plans to carry on and expand this feature globally.
Ultra Worldwide have just completed their world tour for 2017 and have revealed incredible statistics about just how many people love their festivals.
On Saturday, 14th October Ultra Brasil closed their second annual festival, marking the end of Ultra Worldwide’s massive 2017. The festival organisers saw a monumental year that had over 1 million people dancing across 45 events in 20 countries all around the world.
Ultra Brasil saw the culmination of Ultra Worldwide’s expanded efforts, which saw over 90,000 people come together for one festival in Rio De Janeiro’s Sambodromo. It followed the debut Ultra Mexico by just one week as well as a variety of RESISTANCE and Road To Ultra events that took place over ten days across 7 countries. Ultra dominated Latin America this year.
Over 1 MILLION people attend Ultra events for a 2nd consecutive year!
With such an impressive row of events out of the way Ultra wanted to show off a little of their pride in how successful the year has been. For the second year in a row Ultra Worldwide have drawn over 1 million people from around the world. Here’s a rundown of their stats for 2017:
Ultra Worldwide 2017 General
Total global attendance: 1,000,000+
Total number of events: 45
Total number of new events in 2017: 23
Country count: 20
Total number of festival event hours: 554
Total staff employed worldwide: 10,000+
Ultra Worldwide 2017 Media
Livestream hours broadcasted via UMF TV: 143
Livestream hours viewed to date: 3,000,000
Total number of artist appearances: 1,028
Total ULTRA Passport holders: 300,000+
UMF Radio country distribution: 62
UMF Radio estimated weekly listeners: 32,693,400
Just days after Apple Music’s London Festival gets shelved Spotify step in with ‘Who We Be’ festival, the streamer’s first UK live music show.
Apple’s London music festival has been cancelled after it’s annual run, but no worries as their biggest rival has jumped straight on the case. Barely half a week since Apple cancelled their Apple Music festival streamer No.1 Spotify announced Who We Be, a UK festival hosted by the streaming legends.
Who We Be will take place on the 30th of November, again in London but this time at Alexandra Palace. Performers will include a curated selection of the grime and rap scene in Britain with Grime legend Dizzee Rascal, Manchester MC Bugzy Malone, Cardi B, Giggs, J Hus, and Stefflon Don all for free.
The festival gets its name from Spotify’s popular, curated Who We Be playlist which is followed by 140,000 listeners. Lucky for those listeners, Who We Be followers get first access to tickets when they go on sale on September the 11th, next Monday.
The BBC are stepping up to fill the Glastonbury-shaped hole in 2018 as the festival takes a break for fallow.
Glastonbury announced earlier this year that they would be taking a break for a year to allow the festival site to recover and be reborn out of the mud, its first chance to rest since 2012. With a giant gap in live British music next year the BBC have stepped up to the plate and are planning to hold 4 giant events across the UK.
An expansion of the BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend, they will be holding the ‘Biggest Weekend’ at locations in England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland. 175,000 tickets will be made available for the massive event which will take place next May on the bank holiday weekend, 25th-28th.
It hasn’t been revealed where in each country the festival will take place nor which acts will play, but you can bet it will be a range of massive artists. Whilst BBC’s events normally feature one or two of their popular radio platforms presenting music, the Biggest Weekend will feature concerts from Radio 1, Radio 2, Radio 3 and 6 Music.
The director of BBC Radio and Music, Bob Shennan, says this will be the BBC’s biggest music event ever, saying: “BBC Music has a strong history of bringing the nation together for some special moments, and this is the biggest single music event ever attempted by the BBC. We will be celebrating the diversity of music from four different corners of the country, bringing the best UK music to the world and the best global music to the UK.”
The festival will be covered by the BBC’s TV channels BBC2 and BBC4, as well as rolling coverage featured online on the BBC site. And speaking of TV – the festival is part of a new, larger commitment to music from the corporation who have also recently announce their first music-focused programme since Top of the Pops ended over 11 years ago. The program will broadcast 6 episodes this summer with interviews, comedy sketches and, of course, live performances.
Britain’s greatest celebration of jazz returned for its 5th year last weekend and saw jazz legends from back in the day and rising stars alike put on a killer festival.
Up near the Brighton coast for the past 5 years a small festival has been held as a showcase of the amazing jazz, funk and soul artists around today – particularly jazz. Set on the beautiful grounds of Glynde Place Love Supreme never fails to provide an incredible weekend of music, community and an overall atmosphere of pure, unfiltered beauty.
Of course it’s unfortunately too late in the timeline for the legends like Miles Davis and John Coltrane (although the dedication is right there in the festival’s name). That said, the templates and precedent set by the golden age of jazz is seen ever clearly in the range of incredible and talented acts performing every year at Love Supreme.
This was my second year at Love Supreme after being blown away by the location, music and ambience of last year’s festival. This year Love Supreme managed to secure a couple of old-school legends for the bill with jazz guitar virtuoso-come-R&B star George Benson taking the main stage and legendary keyboardist and jazz-fusion innovator Herbie Hancock.
George Benson lit up the crowd with nostalgia as young and old alike came together to sing and sway to his soulful crooning that, at 74, sounded as quality as ever. Herbie Hancock opted for the more personal Big Top stage, the biggest of their tent stages which was perfect for diverse and intimate jazz that emanated from Herbie and his talented band which featured Terrace Martin on the drums.
The Big Top also played host to Christian Scott who blew away audiences with his incredibly powerful and intimate tracks. As he has become notorious for, Scott went off on monologues describing his connection with each band member and the stories behind some of his songs. Putting context behind the players you’re watching and the composition’s you’re hearing give a whole new dimension to Scott’s pieces however the staff clearly weren’t ready for such a long talk as Scott was being rushed off stage towards his last song.
Kamasi Washington was back for another year, upgraded from the Big Top to the main stage. However deserving I feel Kamasi is of any notoriety I felt that the stage didn’t suit Kamasi’s epic pieces and powerful builds with restricted sound. Last year’s performance blew me away thanks to the intimacy of the Big Top and Kamasi’s absolute power over the sax, this year I didn’t stick around to the end of his set.
Other notable acts include the Robert Glasper Experiment who shined with Glasper seamlessly moving between tracks and incorporating his renowned covers of Roxanne and Smells Like Teen Spirit, which got the crowd going wild. The Jackson’s rocked the main stage following their recent regrouping, which I heard was great – I however had other priorities.
Badbadnotgood were slated as my favourite to see after their recent album ‘IV’ blew my tits off with gorgeous jazz blended with hip-hop and electric noise. Whether it was the stage, set-up or their mood I don’t know but their performance wasn’t the blow-away event I was hoping for. Still a pretty wild ride, however.
When it came time for the night there was a choice between the great DJ’s on, including Nightmares On Wax, at the Green and Blue bar, hidden away between the woods. There was also a range of music in The Arena tent which became home to multiple dance trains and chants of “Ohhhh Jeremy Corbyn“.
I also had the pleasure of seeing my friends in Têtes De Pois play on the bandstand in the centre of the festival. The lovely Leeds lot played a killer set of their sophisticated originals and even a jazzed up cover of Redbone by Childish Gambino. Têtes De Pois got to play the Bandstand after winning a competition between 3 other artists to play there, the runners-up ‘The Thirteen Club‘ also happen to be a RouteNote artist I’ve liked for a long time – so that was all very cool.
Now one of the things that made me fall in love with Love Supreme festival so much last year was it’s atmosphere. Thanks to still being a fairly niche event the crowds are normally dedicated fans and muso’s who have come to have a good time and enjoy great music. Young and old alike, t-totallers and joint smoking teenagers can all co-exist in a land where all that matters is amazing music, being happy and loving one another. Love Supreme never fails to create this ambience.
Beyond the music there’s the food and drink. Whilst the food was once again top quality from a MASSIVE range of independent outlets featuring everything from paella, black pudding hotdogs, duck burgers, and plenty for the vegan and veggies. Drinks were a different story: Of course we all know festival drinks are overpriced but £5.50 for a coke can’s worth of beer is quite honestly a joke, as is paying almost a tenner for a double with mixer. This resulted in many sneaking drinks in, which were thankfully allowed in the campsite.
And then finally the location. Set in a gorgeous valley surrounded by trees and hills with the glorious looking Glynde Place looking down over the festival. The surrounding countryside really completes the beauty that is held at Love Supreme festival.
Despite weather predictions the sun was blazing on both Saturday on Sunday, and I like to think the love and beauty that encapsulates Love Supreme helped clear the skies for my favourite festival on earth.
It truly is A Love Supreme.
Tickets for Love Supreme 2018 go on sale tomorrow – 06/07/2018 – for super early bird price of 30% off. Find out more at : www.lovesupremefestival.com