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Liverpool’s Sound City festival and Virgin Music UK announce two year partnership

1 year ago

Liverpool’s Sound City festival and Virgin Music UK announce two year partnership
Credit: Jonny Nolan

Sound City is delighted to announce an exciting new two-year partnership with Virgin Music Artist & Label Services.

The UK’s leading independent festival for new music will join forces with Virgin Music to support and drive opportunity for the next wave of young creatives. 

Sound City takes place this year from 28-30 April 2023 with tickets on sale now at

With shared values at its core, including diversity, innovation and creativity within the sector, the partnership will roll out for the first time at this year’s Sound City festival and conference. During Sound City Conference taking place on Friday 28th April 2023 and already boasting a bumper line-up including Jamie Webster, Bob Vylan and Lady Leshurr, Virgin Music will host a special ‘in conversation’ session between Virgin Music UK President Vanessa Bosåen and artist VV Brown, delving into experiences in the music industry, and how this looks as the industry moves to the future. 

What’s more, ‘Virgin Music Presents’ is the exclusive, all-new, headline showcase set to take place at ‘New Music Friday’, the opening evening of music of Sound City aimed at shining a light on undiscovered talent from across the country. This showcase will see four emerging acts from Virgin Music’s exciting and diverse roster, spanning a multitude of genres, perform intimate sets at a chosen venue in Liverpool city centre – with line-up and location to be revealed very soon. 

Also at this year’s Sound City, ‘Meet Virgin Music’ will take place as part of the Liverpool festival on Saturday 29th April at Liverpool Arts Bar, one of the festival satellite venues. In a first for the festival, the event will offer educational insights plus thought-provoking interviews and discussions, curated by the team at Virgin Music. Fans can expect an introduction to the world of artist and label services plus focussed conversations that delve more deeply into a selection of the wide range of genres and artists that Virgin Music represent. Guest speakers and artists are set to be announced in the coming weeks as Sound City draws closer.

Melissa Meadows (Head of TV and Content, Virgin Music U.K.) and Richard Ashton (Head of Radio and Label Relations, Virgin Music U.K.) said: 

“We are delighted to announce this exciting partnership with Liverpool Sound City, and are proud to be a part of a festival that showcases the best musical talent, situated in such an important and historical musical hub. We can’t wait for the Liverpool Sound City audience to discover a sample of the Virgin Music roster and enjoy the discussions within our curated panels”.

Sound City’s Managing Director Becky Ayres added: 

“We’re delighted to be working with Virgin Music – a truly iconic brand in the world of music for fans and artists alike – at Sound City 2023. They have blown us away with their ideas which are completely in tune with their values – disruptive innovation, musical creativity and innovation, putting artists absolutely at the centre of everything they do – and ours. It’s so exciting that our audiences will be able to learn more about how they work and their diverse and innovative roster of artists. I’ve no doubt that it will be brilliant and look forward to developing this groundbreaking partnership over the next two years.”

Virgin Music is already making a contribution to supporting young creatives in the North West, contributing to Sound City’s new Pay It Forward scheme that encourages leading industry businesses to donate, allowing local young people from disadvantaged backgrounds to attend the Sound City Conference and festival. Virgin Music have paid for five  individuals to attend Sound City that may not have had the means to otherwise. Sound City would also like to thank the following businesses who have also contributed to their Pay It Forward scheme: AIM, Arts Council England, CAPLL LTD,  scotts, Tessuti, SAE, Tunecore, Amplead, Bruntwood, Bundobust, gigseekr, Keychange, Leeds Conservatoire, Modern Sky, PRS Foundation, SAMA, SESAC and Vevo.

Sound City has long been supporting the next wave of young creatives through its expansive portfolio of educational programmes and initiatives, designed to open doors and opportunity for young people in the North West region. This includes Sound City’s Artist Training and Development Programme, Launch Training, Hidden Music Histories and Sound City Satellite.


Sound City Festival is the must-attend celebration of music discovery, and undisputedly the UK’s independent festival for new music, headlined this year by Maisie Peters and chart-toppers The Reytons. Kicking off the festival season with a plethora of the most exciting emerging acts spanning a multitude of genres, Sound City delivers the ultimate festival to discover the sounds of the future. Welcoming music loving attendees and artists from across the UK and the world over, Sound City takes place in its Liverpool home, a city with a buzzing live music scene and a rich musical heritage. In what’s set to be a bumper year for Liverpool, which has been hand-picked to host the Eurovision Song Contest, Sound City runs from 28-30 April 2023.


The annual Sound City conference is the UK’s leading independent music conference and AIM UK’s ‘Conference in The North’. For over 15 years, Sound City has welcomed leading industry figures, emerging artists and aspiring music business professionals to Liverpool for a full-day programme of educational panels, in-conversations and networking parties. Sound City 2023 is the must-attend event for established music professionals and aspiring creatives alike, as music lovers and industry leaders from all over the world are welcomed to the North of England for an unrivalled day of innovative, forward-thinking industry discussion. The first wave of in-conversations and panels will be announced on January 31st. Taking place on 28th April 2023, tickets for the Sound City Conference are on sale now via



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