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Gigs and debates at Un-Convention

Charlene McAuley reports on a Salford music conference that's not all about the next big thing

Published on June 3rd 2009.

Gigs and debates at Un-Convention

Music lovers in and around Manchester will embark en masse to Salford for Un-Convention 2009 at the end of this week. Countering the In The City event in Manchester, this not-for-profit grassroots music conference is staging its national event in Salford on 4, 5 and 6 June, and will be a hub of independent musicians and labels alike.

With future events lined up in Glasgow, London, Reykjavik and Barcelona, the Un-Convention conference 'embodies the spirit of independence, and celebrates the optimism, resilience and passion of music’s bright young things', tapping into the mentality of those who want to move away from the hype and make up their own minds.

Un-Convention will be host five debates, each focussing on a key issue that independent or DIY artists and labels face. With panellists ranging from Peter Hook of New Order to Glastonbury's chief band booker Martin Elbourne, the convention is using its niche credentials to pull in the big names, promoting debate and discussion.

The conference aims to appeal to individuals who don't want to be told what the 'next big thing' will be. Instead, it will encourage the exchange of ideas, camaraderie, and collectivism.


In addition to the panels and workshops, Un-Convention presents live talent, across genres, from all over the country.

Bands include: I Am Kloot, Everything Everything, Kyte, The Loose Salute, Magic Arm, Kasms, Arthur Delaney, Gallops, Sisters of Transistors, The Tombots, Arch Nazards, Fangs, Jamie Finlay, Withered Hand, Louis Barabbas and the Bedlam 6, John Smith, Jake Flowers, Jesca Hoop, plus a Lil' Fee (The Whip) DJ Set.

MTV's and XFM's Jo Good will be Master of Ceremonies on Friday night, with Vic McGlynn of BBC 6 taking over on Saturday.

Everything Everything

The schedule for Un-Convention 2009 is:

1. The Artist Panel – Setting The Scene (Thursday 4 June, 6pm)
Moderator – John Robb (Goldblade)
Panellists – Chas Smash (Madness), Peter Hook (New Order), Ashley Beedle, Liam Frost, Lil' Fee (The Whip), Pete Jobson (I Am Kloot), Aniff Akinola, John Smith

2. Outside The Box (Friday 5 June, 12noon)
Moderator – Andrew Dubber (New Music Strategies)
Panellists – Stef Lewandowski (Type Records), Steve Lawson, Abigail Seabrook (Lady Georgianna), Amran Ellahi (Aashiq-al-Rasul), Caroline P Churchill (aka Caro Snatch)

3. The Modern Role Of Collection Agencies (Friday 5 June, 4pm)
Moderator – Mark Meharry (Music Glue)
Panellists – Michael Cassidy (I Think Music), Howard Mills (Humble Soul), Simon Aldridge (BMI), Ed Smith (MCPS)

4. Bands As Enterprise – Do It Together (Saturday 6 June, 12noon)
Moderator – Al Farquhar (Modern Art Management)
Panellists – Martin Atkins (Tour:Smart), Vic McGlynn (livefrommanchester.com), John Empson (Emperor Management), Richard Hoare (Clintons), Rich Dale (Escape Act), Saul Galpern (Nude Records)

5. Live – It’s Easier To Ask For Forgiveness Than It Is For Permission (Saturday 6 June, 4pm)
Moderator – Howard Monk (The Local)
Panellists – Martin Elbourne (Glastonbury), Olivia Chapman (Bloom Festival), Anna Moulson (Melting Vinyl), Crispin Parry (British Underground / Circuit Live), Tim Perry (The Windmill), Jay Taylor (The Ruby Lounge), Fred Fellows (Secret Garden Party)

If music is your passion and the mainstream doesn't satisfy your insatiable appetite, Un-Convention 2009 is the only place to be this week.

Tickets and more info is available at: wordpress.com

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