There will be some of you who have spotted our Shake Up 2012 article and will have been excited about the prospect of a new showcase event for Urban & Dance music in the region. There will be some of you have read the word 'Urban' and not even known what it means!
To be honest, I can't really blame you. It's one of those genres of music, that if you don't sound like you know what you are talking about, you can end up looking a bit stupid, and with it being one of the most unrecognised genres in our region, that might just be the case. Despite urban being the heartbeat of the UK music chart today, there appears to be no big spotlight shining on the wealth of artists we have right here on our doorstep.
If I asked you to reel off 10 supposed 'indie' or 'rock' bands in Sunderland, I am sure you would have no problem. What about if I asked you to give a shout out to some of our high flying 'folk' artists? I bet you could give me a never ending list and spell them backwards. However, if I mentioned Zico MC, Phenzo and Top Boy Round Here, would you think I was trying my luck at scoring some illegal points on scrabble or naming some of the finest urban acts in the North East?
We have such a wealth of talented MC's, producers, vocalists and DJ's around these parts who remain under most of our radars due to a lack of exposure and the great big barrier there seems to be in North East music to allow them the popularity that some of our other artists enjoy without even lifting a finger.
We hope that an event like Shake Up gives some of our rising stars the platform to show of their talent as well as an opportunity to receive advice and feedback from some of the best urban & dance acts in our region.
If you are an aspiring DJ, Vocalist, MC, Producer or band in the NE and would like to be involved you can attend our launch event at Independent on Saturday 14th July. If you would like to read more about Shake Up 2012 click here or you can follow the event on twitter.