Looking to discover the next big thing in music? Then downtown Manhattan is the place to be this week.
This Tuesday marks the first of five fun-filled days of music adventure and discovery that is the CMJ Music Marathon. More than 1300 hopeful artists and bands will draw curious crowds at every underground New York music venue imaginable. Hundreds of panels, seminars, mixer, parties and more will be held across the city. For those unfamiliar with the festival’s history, dubbed by some as the SXSW of NYC, CMJ has been hosted with Greenwich Village as its epicenter for more than three decades, and some of the biggest acts in the industry first made their mark here - Lady Gaga, Black Eyed Peas and Mumford & Sons, to name just a few.
Since performing at Lower East Side venue Mercury Lounge during CMJ in the fall of 2009, when they were a relatively unknown folk-band from the UK, it has been up, up and away for Mumford & Sons. They recently blew first-week album sales records out of the water with more than 600,000 copies of their sophomore score Babel selling in the first week, and more than 8 million streams. The foursome is currently in the top 99th percentile across every metric from MySpace to Facebook, to Rdio, can boast more than 50 million views on YouTube and Vevo combined, and had close to 200,000 page views on Wikipedia in the past week alone.
Several artists who have appeared on the Next Big Sound fastest accelerating artists chart will be performing at CMJ, such as Manicanparty who charted in July and are booked for both Littlefield and Arlene’s Grocery, as well as The Neighbourhood who are scheduled to play Brooklyn Bowl Wednesday night. At last year’s event, the Alabama Shakes were hailed as one of the great big breakout artists.
This year Next Big Sound will be co-hosting a CMJ event of our own, arranged by Sneak Attack Media, alongside companies such as SoundCloud, Mobile Roadie and Bandsintown. Join us Wednesday afternoon at the Bowery Electric for a showcase of some great new bands and a music tech meetup. You can RSVP here.
So if you’re in town this week, CMJ Music Marathon badges are still up for sale and there will be plenty of opportunities to catch some serious hits (and most likely a few misses). So let the madness begin.