BBC Introducing Amplify proved once again that the British industry is stock full of the biggest rising talent and industry heads but also that the experts can tell you how and why it is within an arms reach.
This year the three-day conference was held at London’s Tobacco Dock, a historic stone-built building with ornamented walls of glass windows and open courtyards. Wide halls rang out with open mic stages, product displays, and rooms of seminars and panels with the conference hosted by BBC presenters on topics from across the industry. Focusing on no specific genre and without attitude – I thought this was their best go yet.
Breaking boundaries between spectators and core members of the industry, the panels of the conference were hosted by artists and label heads galore. Big names this year included Annie Mac, Nile Rogers, and James Bay only to name a few with performances from artists like Maisie Peters, Sophie & The Giants and Freddie Long.
Panels were informative and diverse between sectors from changing business attitudes to human ethics like climate change. The conference was perfect for someone with minimal knowledge of the industry over to someone already working in the industry themselves.
Representation is certainly not more important than it was years ago but it’s certainly more prevalent, with panels highlighting women in music and titles like ‘How LGBTQ+ artists are breaking boundaries’ we saw a shift in the industry this year. Diversity is being recognised and as are the people who champion it such as emerging radio presenter and DJ Jaguar.
A key area of the conference for any emerging artist was the feedback centre; an area for attendees to queue up to receive ten minutes of one on one time with A&R’s and industry professionals. An opportunity that is rare and could be a breakthrough for an artist, the possibilities were endless.
However, walking around the conference itself gave anyone attending enough of an opportunity to meet their local BBC Radio representative or more. Even getting drunk with your favourite radio presenter was possible at the Quay Tavern or to stay sober and eat every vegan meal you ever thought you could see.
If you’ve been lying on your bed this week listening to the radio and thinking how you can do it better then next year make sure that you buy tickets for this event – it’s not one to be missed.