Melbourne five-piece Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever have been awarded the third round of the coveted $25,000 Levi's® Music Prize by a panel of international judges today.
The quarterly prize aims to support artists that have built significant initial career momentum via their BIGSOUND experience, but who need a financial leg-up to keep moving forward on the international stage. Showcasing at BIGSOUND 2016, Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever went to sign with Sub Pop Records and release their acclaimed EP The French Press in 2017. with their debut album set for release in June 2018, the band are currently on a two-month overseas tour, playing the European and American festival circuits, including Coachella, Shaky Knees Festival, The Great Escape in the UK, and Barcelona's Primavera Sound.
"We are so grateful to have been chosen for Levi's® Music Prize. BIGSOUND provided the opportunity for us to play a bunch of shows in front of music industry folks from around the world. Because of the conference, we were able to secure a US booking agent and set things in motion for us to start touring our music. Because touring is not cheap, particularly for Australian bands, it is not easy for young artists to take their music on the road. The Levi's® Music Prize will help us tour our album to new audiences in new cities and towns" -Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever.
The decision was made by a panel of international music industry buyers including representatives from ATC Live, Planetary Group and Vector Management.
The Levi's® Music Prize fulfils BIGSOUND's ambition to deliver increasing value to showcasing artists, as well as cementing the Levi's® brand's ongoing commitment to the Australian music industry. Together creating the largest music prize in Australian music history, offering a total annual prize pool of $100k over an initial three-year commitment. So far, Stella Donelly and Alex Lahey have been awarded $25,000 each, to help them achieve their export goals, with another prize announcement still to come to round out the first year's commitment. Last month, Levi's® also announced that from round 1 2018/19 the prize will increase to include $5,000 to each winning artist in travel from Stage & Screen.
"It's been great to see the Levi's® Music Prize gain momentum over the last 8 months. We've had such a positive response with an amazing array of musicians applying each quarter. Australia has an abundance of talent; and it's a joy to be able to give back to the music community in such a way that can really help further an artist's international career opportunities/ We look forward to seeing all of our winners achieve success and make inroads overseas in the coming months and years to come" -Levi's® Marketing Manager for Australia & New Zealand Nicky Rowsell.
Administered by QMusic in conjunction with Sounds Australia, the prize provides multiple opportunities for BIGSOUND artists as they build their international careers post-BIGSOUND.
Applications are now open for Round 4 and will close June 11, 2018. Artists who have performed on the official BIGSOUND line up between 2013-2017 are invited to apply via the BIGSOUND website. This is the last chance for artists who showcased in 2013.
Artists accepted to play BIGSOUND Festival, 4-7, 2018 are automatically eligible for Round 1 2018/19 Levi's® Music Prize with the winner to be announced on the final day of BIGSOUND 2018. Artist showcase applications are still open for this year's event- apply before May 10 for your chance to perform in front of some of the most influential figures in the international music industry. Visit the www.bigsound.org.au for more information.