Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Belfast Music Week: 250 events, 70 venues, 7 days

The Wonder Villains will be just one of the acts performing during week
The Wonder Villains will be just one of the acts performing during week

It will be a week of music from all genres, a chance for new bands to showcase their sound and a celebration of culture.

The brochure for this year's Belfast Music Week was launched yesterday at the Ulster Hall in the city. Previously announced events include the Mojo Fury album launch, Distortion Projects' Rock the Hall, industry panels, 15 Years of Bedrock and Van Morrison's Freedom of the City gig.

Visitors are expected from Dublin, London, Nashville and beyond. Last year Belfast Music Week generated £2.1m for the city.

Three months in the planning, the festival's co-ordinator Stuart Bailie spoke of how hard it had been to pull everything together with 250 events due to take place in 70 venues from November 11-17.

He said: "It has been like herding cats, but we now have a fantastic line-up.

"If you're a good songwriter or artist this really is your chance to move things on. We have so many big industry types flying over to Belfast for the festival – management companies, publishing companies, record labels. This is the time to do business.

"We have no shortage of great bands performing from Go Wolf, to Ryan Vail, the DJ Unknown and Joshua Burnside."

The festival co -ordinator is tipping Belfast-based Go Wolf for big success. The indie duo of Scott Jamison (25) and Chris Sloan (23) will be performing at the Limelight as part of the 2013 showcase.

"We have been together for two years but we haven't got a record deal yet," Scott said.

"Music week is great for local bands to make a noise and raise their profile.

"It is a great opportunity for us to get noticed and play to a local audience.

"It's the first time we've played at Belfast Music Week."

Terri Hooley, who is curating a night of live music at Voodoo and DJing at Lavery's, said he didn't expect much sleep. "There are so many gigs that I want to go to, it's going to be so difficult to get round them all.

"It's brilliant. I set up a similar festival years ago to try and get record companies over to Belfast... years later, without any funding from anyone, Belfast City Hall have got behind it. It will be a week of such wonderful talent.

"I have always believed that for such a small country, per head of population, we have got the best musicians, writers, painters than anywhere in Europe.

"The new bands we have got coming up are just amazing. It is fantastic to see Belfast so alive and vibrant. We have had a difficult year and it will be nice to put Belfast back in a better light. It's great to have something positive."

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