Every year the Music Commission puts together a group of industry heads and they scour through hundreds of the best bands and songs that have come out of Berlin for the Listen to Berlin Compilation and Awards!
And here’s how it breaks down:
There’s the Listen to Berlin Compilation – which comes out as a CD, featuring 18 tracks from 18 artists. Each week a Spotify playlist is posted featuring another 4-5 new winners, until the entire 18 are there, ready for the big day: two playlists are already out, the first on 15th September and the second on 4th October. And there are still two to go….who will it be? Just who will it be?
The list of the final 18 will then be announced, together with the fourth playlist, on the 21st October. From that point, the public have the chance to vote for their favourite three – and these will win an award – see below – at the 5th November Listen to Berlin Awards.
And then there’s the Listen To Berlin Awards themselves, an exclusive and invite-only (hint: unless you win the indieBerlin tickets to attend – see below!) evening in the Kesselhaus on 5th November, where the awards are presented. The event falls neatly within the scope of the Most Wanted: Music industry convention which takes place in the Alte Münze on 6th and 7th November, where leading lights of the international independent music industry meet to nod thoughtfully, eat vegan bratwurst (probably) and then go and party all night.
No but seriously folks, it’s a great meeting of minds, seriously good workshops and talks and seminars, and of course loads but loads of networking opportunities. Was I there last year? You guessed it. Got the teeshirt and all. On the site it’s billed as:
“Most Wanted: Music – The bullshit-free, get-it-done, connectivity conference for creatives and music business professionals who know that Berlin does it differently.”
And I can’t help but agree.
NB: for the musos who want to push their career forwards, for the industry people who have not been paying attention recently: there are still a few tickets to be had for the MW:M music industry convention. Follow the link you’re looking at to check it out.*
So what are the Listen to Berlin Awards? Where did it come from, what’s it about?
The listen to berlin: Awards are a distinction for remarkable achievements in the music and creative industries. The prize is awarded without taking any account of commercial gains – unlike some others we could mention – to people active in the Berlin music and creative industry who have made, in the opinions of the judges, a remarkable contribution to the cultural and musical diversity of the capital. So there.
What’s also cool:
The nine categories include:
- The People’s Prize: the public get to vote on their favourite three songs from the Listen to Berlin Music Compilation, one will win the prize!
- The Jury prize: Our esteemed jury choose from the same compilation and get to say which song/artist they figure has shone out this year.
- Prize for supporting and developing the Berlin music scene: There are of course all those who stand in the shadows, behind the artists, tirelessly working away to make sure the Berlin music scene is the thriving, exciting place it is. One person or organisation did more than most: who could it be?
- Prize for Sustainability: these days of course sustainability is the word on everyone’s lips, and the music industry is (generally) doing its part in making things a little more, well, sustainable. There are certain faces around who have been carrying our conscience and doing the dirty work. This is the moment we get to say thank you!
- The Rolf Budde Prize for Haltung – which translates as demeanour, comportment, stance…this is the prize for the person, organisation or group of people who have stood up and been counted.
- Prize for Music Journalism: You guessed it. The best journalist or organisation that did the best…journalism. Speaks for itself really.
- Prize for Music Video Innovation: Tons of music videos out there. Which was the most innovative this year? I guess it’s time to find out.
- Prize for the Most Creative Campaign: Some people just send out a few press releases. Others invert gravity and pull us backwards through wormholes to get the message across. One of these two groups of people win a prize. I’ll let you guess who.
- Honour Prize: While most of us are ricocheting around our own private hamster wheels, there are those of us who think, decide, and stand up to be counted – and in doing so reflect positively on the rest of us.
The listen to berlin: Awards are part of the MOST WANTED: MUSIC Convention (November 6-7) and will be presented on November 5 in front of 400 invited guests in the Kesselhaus of the Kulturbrauerei.
Write to win (at) indieberlin.de for a chance to win a pair of tickets to the Listen to Berlin Awards on 5th November with indieBerlin!
Noel Maurice is one of the founders of indieberlin. Originally from the UK via a childhood in Johannesburg, he has been resident in Berlin since 1991. Describing himself as a ‘recovering musician’, he is the author of The Berlin Diaires, a trilogy detailing the East Berlin art and squat scene of the early 90s, available on Amazon and through this site.