Things we are looking forward to in 2017 – the events, the artists, the music…
Now that the ups and downs (and more downs) of 2016 are behind us, we can stand up, dust ourselves down and look forward to the next 12 months and all the promise they hold. On the whole 2016 was actually a very good year for music on Merseyside – the regions festivals were well received and gained the awards to back it up, artists from the area broke out of the locality to make an impact on a national and international scale, music venues proved that the demise of the Kazimier was not the end of the world with some great gigs and excellent new spaces opening up. 2017 will hopefully follow these trends with some excellent sounds to keep an ear out. Here’s our 8 things we are looking forward to in Merseyside music this year…
Oyé Celebrates 25 years
The marvellous Africa Oyé celebrates 25 years in existence this year – an incredible achievement for any festival. Anyone who has been to Oyé will know the special atmosphere it brings to Sefton Park in June. This year, the organisers are planning broader activity outside of the 16th-17th June weekender to bring the good times Oyé vibes to even more fans of music from Africa and it’s diaspora. Once again, the festival will be supporting local talent with it’s Oyé Introduces festival slot (last year taken up by the fantastic XamVolo who came in to talk to Sound Station ahead of the festival).
Liverpool’s Summer of Love
Marking 50 years since the 60s high watermark of peace, love and great music, Liverpool is celebrating it’s role in what made 1967 the Summer of Love. Looking at such monumental events such as the opening of the Metropolitan Cathedral, the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality, the release of Sgt Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band and the poetry anthology Mersey Sound, organisations such as the Liverpool Philharmonic, the Bluecoat and Homotopia will host a range of events across the summer. Keep your eyes peeled for details!
The winner of last years 2016 Merseyrail Sound Station Prize is itching to make the most of his victory at Moorfields last November. Singer-songwriter Astles is set to embark on a years worth of activity which will show music fans what he is capable and build on the potential he showcased at the final. Details of a special show in March are set to be unveiled imminently…
Emerging Stars to Keep An Eye On
As well as the two aforementioned future superstars, Liverpool has a raft of emerging talent ready to bust out and make their mark on the music industry. One place to see many of these is Aprils Threshold Festival in the Baltic Triangle with artists such as The Shipbuilders, LOKA and Tabitha will performance across various venues. Sound Station will once again be getting involved with our own stage headlined by the hugely talents Danye.
To listen to our podcast recorded at last years Threshold Festival click here.
Merseyrail Sound Station turns 5
We have lots of plan in store to keep Merseyrail Sound Station’s position as THE place to find your new favourite band through a variety of live activity, great online content and other bits and pieces. You can keep abreast of the goings-on by signing up to our monthly e-newsletter here. It’s the platforms fifth year in existence so we want to make it our biggest and best yet – if you want to get involved get in touch!
Vinyl’s continued resurgence
In what is a clear sign that music fans are the most committed, discerning and tuned in, Vinyl sales reached a 25 year high this month. We love the respect the format gets and hope many more Sound Station artists will one day see their sounds committed to wax as former podcast guests She Drew The Gun did last year.
The Health Of Local Music
2015 saw the closure of the Kazimier, a very sad sight indeed. However, with the rise of the Invisible Wind Factory, the north docklands venue from the same organisation and other great new venues opening their doors, 2016 proved the resilience of the Liverpool music scene. 2017 will see more activity at venues such as the North Shore Troubadour and Meraki (who neighbour the Invisible Wind Factory), new autonomous rehearsal rooms Pirate Studios provide affordable space for artists to practice in and festivals such as Positive Vibration will build on its awards gong while WRONG Festival introduces itself. Onwards and upwards.
A key part of the incubatory environment Merseyside provides for emerging musicians is doubtless LIMF Academy. The jewel in Liverpool International Music Festival’s crown rewards forward thinking talent and provides a platform for them to shine with festival spots, a development programme and industry exposure. 2016 saw podcast guests Eleanor Nelly and L U M E N gain ‘Most Ready’ status and have barnstorming years. We can’t wait to see the fraternity of talent included in the 20-strong list this year.