Scotland’s Go North, Manchester’s In The City, Brighton’s The Great Escape and London newcomer Musexpo have all established themselves as industry favourites. The events also invite members of the public to attend night time gigs, allowing A&R execs to gauge a band’s ability in front of a paying crowd.
Sound City in Liverpool is a ‘city centre music festival and conference’. Its Director, David Pichilingi, established the event three years ago on the back of a series of successful showcases at SXSW with The Coral, a band he used to manage.
‘At SXSW, we noticed that the Welsh had their showcase and the Scottish had theirs too, while the British were all lumped together. The thing was, we didn’t feel particularly British. We felt like Scousers, and the Mancs felt like Mancs.’
It was a sense of regional identity therefore that propelled Pichilingi to create Sound City, an event where 400 music acts play in venues around Liverpool alongside a packed conference schedule. Of those 400 acts, roughly 100 will be from the Merseyside area.
Sound City’s selection procedure for bands is based on a network of ‘the best ears in the business’ who put forward their recommendations to Pichilingi.
David’s top tip: ‘Bands should focus on their craft,’ says Pichilingi. ‘If you do what you do well, someone will find you, it’s “the Pele effect”. Too many bands have read a book on how to market themselves when what they should be concentrating on is being really good at what they do. It’s our job to search you out, and at Sound City we’ll try and get to you first, and put you in front of people who can change your life.’. Go global by playing at a trade show abroad. - our International trade shows gives you the low-down.