Thoughts and music of double J x

Focus Wales: wXm: Version 5.0

7df31f2b-9090-469f-87f3-38ab62496008FOCUS WALES Music Festival returns to North Wales from 22ND – 25TH April 2015 for its 5th year!

FOCUS Wales has once again taken over the town centre of Wrexham for four days, with an audience of around 4000 people, to see showcases from over 150 bands from Wales and around the globe, and a series of high profile and educational music industry seminars & events, plus three nights of stand-up comedy, hosted across various venues within the town.

SlavesNewPhoto1Music Headliners announced for the 2015 festival include: SLAVES – fresh from the NME tour, and BBC Sounds of 2015 nomination…

Full 4 day wristbands for admission to all FOCUS events are available now at: http://www.focuswales.com/tickets for £50 each. Tickets allow access to all FOCUS Wales shows and interactive programmes.

EAGULLS – Leeds-based band achieved great US success at SXSW and The David Letterman Show, and was o be followed by another guest DJ; MIKE JOYCE of THE SMITHS… Welsh rock five-piece FUTURE OF THE LEFT performed tracks from their new album ‘How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident’, followed by BBC Radio 1’s HUW STEPHENS..

Rounding things off on the Saturday, Japan’s psychedelic quartet BO NINGEN… Other announcements included: Kerrang! magazine favourites ALLUSONDRUGS, and the original Creation Records band THE MEMBRANES, THE  SWEET BABOO, SAMOANS, ZEFUR WOLVES, THE PALE BLUE DOTS, SWNAMI, R. SEILIOG, MOJA, LITTLE ARROW, YUCATAN, //NIGHTS//, AMY STUDT, FALLS, SEAZOO, GOLDEN FABLE, HOUDINI DAX, COWBOIS RHOS BOTWNNOG, BLACK HONEY, TRECCO BEIS + over 100 more live acts from Wales and beyond. Plus comedy from: HENNING WEHN, RAY PEACOCK, SEYMORE MACE, & more.

Manic_Street_Preachers_2_-_credit-_Alex_Lake_1378295268_crop_550x288MANIC STREET PREACHERS Had Special Screening in Wrexham as Part of FOCUS WALES FESTIVAL

FOCUS Wales 2015 also hosted an exclusive screening of new MANIC STREET PREACHERS documentary: CULTURE, ALIENATION, BOREDOM AND DESPAIR. The film, which was made by filmmaker Kieran Evans and longtime Manics collaborator Robin Turner, was originally planned as a 20-minute DVD extra to go with last year’s ‘Generation Terrorists’ reissue box set. However, a full 76-minute version of it featuring archive film, TV clips, artwork and band photos from their personal archives.  The screening was accompanied by an introduction and Q&A session with BAFTA award winning director KIERAN EVANS and best-selling author, Manics biographer, and music critic for The Guardian and The Observer, SIMON PRICE. Kieran has worked with the MANIC STREET PREACHERS for a number of years and his promo for their single ‘Show Me The Wonder’ won Best Video at the 2013 Q Awards. He worked with the Manics on all visual aspects of their recent ‘Futurology’ album campaign, directing all the promos, short films and live tour visuals and is currently working again with the band on a series of short films based around their recent Holy Bible live shows. It’s safe to say he’s also a massive Manics fan…

The film was screened at UNDEGUN POP UP ARTS CENTRE (Formerly JJB Sports, Regent St. Wrexham) on SATURDAY 25TH APRIL 2015

mike joyceFocus Wales 2015 was delighted to announce MIKE JOYCE of THE SMITHS as the keynote speaker Friday 24th April! Joyce was drummer and founder member of THE SMITHS from their formation in 1982. He was discussing his life in music and as a member of this iconic British band and the revolutionary change they brought to the face of music in the UK and around the world with John Robb.

On Friday 24th panels kicked off with a Rights Clinic, followed by ‘Composing Music For TV & Film’, and then a Guest Presentation with Youtube Entrepreneur Gareth Evans, who was talking about his rise to over 200,000 subscriptions and 25 million hits on the video platform to promote his music. This was followed by ‘Digital Horizons: How To Build a Career In Music Online’ with representatives from Spotify, Bandwagon, Music Glue, and Sentric Music.

RitzyThe interactive programme this year also included: RITZY BRYAN of THE JOY FORMIDABLE in conversation. Ritzy was in conversation with BBC RADIO WALES’ ADAM WALTON, discussing her experiences as the singer, guitarist, and co-writer of one of North East Wales’ most successful band of the last 10 years.

Thursday 23rd kicked off the programme with 4 panel sessions, covering topics from ‘How To Pitch a Campaign To National Media’ with the likes of BBC RADIO 1’S HUW STEPHENS, and the editor of NME magazine MIKE WILLIAMS, to ‘Why I Can’t Quit: The Reality of Being In a Band in 2015’ with representatives from TEAM ROCK RADIO, LIVE NATION, and SPINEFARM RECORDS.

vinyl streetIntroduction to Remixing Project in association with Dee Valley Water

Each year in the event’s run up FOCUS Wales deliver a variety of community based projects. These projects provide people of all ages and abilities with access to engaging and informative workshops and performances. This year FOCUS Wales are collaborating with ‘Vic Studios’ to present the ‘Introduction to Remixing’ project in association with Dee Valley Water. This project offers 10 young music enthusiasts the opportunity to partake – FREE of charge – in the 2 hour micro course, which offers participants the opportunity to learn the basics of music remixing. The sessions took place at the Wrexham Victoria Youth Centre (13 Hill Street, Wrexham, LL11 1SN), and were presented by Course Director and Studio Co-ordinator Mike Harmina. Participants who successfully complete the course were rewarded with a FREE FOCUS Wales Festival Wristband, granting free access to the festival. Successful participants are also awarded an OCN ‘Introduction to Remixing’ Level 2 qualification certificate.

Ian Plenderleith, Chief Executive of Dee Valley Water, said: “Dee Valley Water is pleased to be able to contribute towards the growing success of this important arts festival which is based in the heart of our supply area. We are particularly pleased to be helping young people learn more about the world of music. We look forward to welcoming everyone to this beautiful area for what will be a stimulating and entertaining weekend.”

For bookings and enquiries please email: vicstudios@hotmail.com

fw2015FOCUS Wales’ extensive interactive programme now spans across 3 days featuring panel discussions, music industry help clinics, performances, and film screenings. All interactive sessions are open to weekend ticket holders, and day ticket holders within the day of purchased ticket.

*Previous FOCUS Wales performers include: Euros Childs / Michael Rother (NEU! / Harmonia / Kraftwerk) / Catfish & The Bottlemen / Charlotte Church / John Cooper Clarke / Huw Stephens (Radio 1) / The Whip / Damo Suzuki / Cian Ciaran / Islet / Gary Delaney / All We Are / Kids In Glass Houses / Jodie Marie / Man Without Country / Gulp / Georgia Ruth / Norman Lovett / By The Sea / John Lawrence / Jamie Smith’s Mabon / The Gentle Good / Bastions / Keys / Al Lewis + lots more!

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