In an either extremely clever or just brave bit of scheduling, the inaugural edition of the Miami Music Festival launches this Thursday, less than a week after the onslaught of Art Basel Miami Beach. Despite the lack of a long recuperation lag, though, if you truly want to support South Florida's development as a musical nexus, this event is worth checking out.
Presided over by Will Edwards, the owner of Transit Lounge, the MMF is designed as a multi-day shebang of simultaneous industry conferences and panels during the day, and band showcases at night. Think a mini SXSW or CMJ, with a Miami flair. While those other, larger conferences have long been indie rock-centric, this jam represents a much broader spectrum of genres. Rock, Latin, jazz, Caribbean, hip-hop, and R&B acts are all represented, and while the spread is heavily local, there are a number of out-of-towners arriving to play as well.
A number of real industry heavyweights are set to attend and lead panels, and there are at least 20 simultaneous showcases a night, in a number of tents and venues across the lower downtown/Brickell area. So no, it's not your average rinky-dink local music festival, but rather promises to be a well-oiled machine with way too much going on for any one person to attend.
So here's our guide to help you pick and choose which new acts to discover.
Of course, a number of local standbys are playing, and are always worth checking out -- so we'll just go ahead and name-check Jose El Rey, Awesome New Republic, Suenalo, Ex Norwegian, Jacob Jeffries Band, Mayday, and the State Of, among many others, as worth your time.
Otherwise, stay tuned to Crossfade later today and throughout the rest of the week for introductions to other bands who will be playing the MMF.
Miami Music Festival. Thursday, December 10 through Saturday, December 12. Various downtown Miami venues. Public showcases start at 8 p.m. each night. Three-day wristbands cost $50, or $35 for students. One-day wristbands cost $25, or $20 for students. Otherwise individual showcases cost $10. miamimusicfestival.org