BIGSOUND Drops First Official Speaker Announce + Tech and Visual Arts Program

May 11, 2017



BIGSOUND Festival, the southern hemisphere’s biggest celebration of new music held in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley from September 5 - 8, has unveiled its first round of tastemaker attendees and speakers, drawing from a massive pool of buyers, talent scouts and A&R from around the globe, along with some inspirational local legends.

Heading the announcement are two Australian artist keynotes, Archie Roach and Tina Arena. Proving there are many ways to Australian music success, the two speakers’ career paths couldn’t be more different, yet they have both cemented their place in the Australian consciousness through crossing cultures, ages and genres to prove the relevance of telling Australian stories through song across multiple decades.

"It is my honour to welcome our esteemed first keynote speakers to the lineup this year, Tina Arena and Archie Roach - two Australian icons who have contributed so much to our cultural identity over the past few decades. I know they have a lot to say, and I absolutely can't wait to hear it,” said BIGSOUND programmer Maggie Collins. “I’m also so excited to finally reveal just a glimpse of the many exciting, hungry, and passionate people that are chomping at the bit to come out to BIGSOUND. They're gagging to discover their next favourite Australian band, and work with them around the world."
Some of the hottest US music tastemakers are heading down under for BIGSOUND 2017 including Quentin Tarantino’s music supervisor Mary Ramos. Ramos is responsible for some of cinema’s most seminal Grammy, Academy Award, BAFTA and Critics Choice-nominated soundtracks including Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill Vol. 2, From Dusk Till Dawn and Jackie Brown, creating soundscapes that have defined the cinema for a generation of movie-lovers.

This year will also be a celebration of BIGSOUND successes, with alumni that have signed deals after hype from their previous BIGSOUND Festival performances bringing their international teams back to join the party. Domino’s Peter Berard will be heading to BIGSOUND after the label signed one of last year’s buzz acts Middle Kids while Stuart Meyer from Sub Pop will be attending having recently inked BIGSOUND alumni Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever. The UK’s ATC Live is sending Isla Angus, agent for BIGSOUND 2015 buzz band The Goon Sax. Brazilian publicist Adel Hattem from D Music Marketing, BIGSOUND 2014 alumni Flume’s current South American promo representative, will also make the trip across the Pacific.


The Worldwide Independent Network’s (WIN) Alison Wenham will also provide a mini-keynote on the state of the global independent sector. BIGSOUND also welcomes triple j’s Nick Findlay and Zan Rowe, A&R from Trouble In Mind Records, Belmont Bookings and Magnetic Asia, as well as dozens more great humans that can really help BIGSOUND attendees build a global career in music. If you’re in the music industry and you’re not excited by this line up, then you’re just not Googling hard enough.

A panel of the international delegates will also be deciding the inaugural Levi’s® Music Prize - a $100,000 annual prize pool up for grabs to support BIGSOUND alumni to take the next steps in their career and create opportunities from the buzz they create at BIGSOUND Festival. Applications for artists wanting to play in front of the world’s music tastemakers and be eligible for the prize are able to apply now via the all-new and super-easy application process at

Artist applications have been extended by two weeks and will close on May 22.
BIGSOUND Festival 2017 will also see the launch of a number of new elements, including an expanded program of music technology content in the conference and a new Music Tech Showcase. Emerging Australian music tech companies with products at prototype stage are encouraged to submit showcase applications via the BIGSOUND website. Successful applicants will receive a full day of mentoring in the lead-up to BIGSOUND, and the invaluable opportunity to market test their products with the music industry in attendance.
"Technology is arguably the biggest influence over today's music industry, so it's fitting that BIGSOUND becomes more inclusive of the tech sector." said QMusic Executive Officer Joel Edmondson. "The new Music Tech Showcase is something we hope establishes itself over time as being as valuable to the tech sector as BIGSOUND's artist performance opportunities are for emerging musical talent."
This announcement follows the recent addition of BIGSOUND's Visual Arts Showcase (applications are also open on the BIGSOUND website) as the event expands to become a platform for the full range of industries and sectors that make the Australian music industry a global success.
Stay tuned for more exciting announcements about BIGSOUND’s evolution in 2017!


Archie Roach (AUS) – Keynote
Tina Arena (AUS) – Keynote
Adel Hattem – D Music Marketing (Brazil)
Alison Wenham – Worldwide Independent Network (UK)
Andrew Jervis – Bandcamp (USA)
Ash Kerley – Girls Rock! (AUS)
Bill Roe – Trouble In Mind Records (USA)
Bob Van Heur – Le Guess Who? Festival / Belmont Bookings (NL)
Eva Trifonas – Ninja Tune (AUS)
Isla Angus – ATC Live (UK)
Ivy Yuen – Magnetic Asia Limited (Hong Kong)
James Clarke – Aeroplane Agency (AUS)
James Moodie – Vevo (UK)
Jane Abernathy – 4AD Records (USA)
Jenn Yacoubian – Goldenvoice (USA)
Lucy Wood – Festival Republic (UK)
Mary Ramos – Saturday Music Inc. (USA)
Mazin Tappuni – Communion Music (UK)
Mel Brown – Impressive PR (UK)
Melissa Woods – Third Side Music (USA)
Mike Ajayi – All My Friends (UK)
Nick Findlay – triple j (AUS)
Paul Adams – New Community Management / Roc Nation (USA)
Peter Berard – Domino Recording Co. Ltd. (USA)
Poppy Reid – Seventh Street Media (AUS)
Rebecca Young – Collective Artists (AUS)
Ric Leichtung – Adhoc (USA)
Roy Amar – Bear Parts Music (AUS)
Stuart Meyer – Sub Pop (USA)
Sullivan Patten – Sullivan (AUS)
Sylvie Piccolotto – Rock City (Argentina)
Zan Rowe – triple j (AUS)


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