The partnership between Boiler Room and Ballantine’s was created to support and showcase revolutionary underground music scenes from around the world. Over the past four years, they have documented the stories of 21 local music scenes, collaborated with more than 150 artists and 65 million music fans have enjoyed the online music content.
This year’s project, True Music: Hybrid Sounds is set to embark on a tri-continental tour next month, visiting Moscow, Sao Paulo, Beirut and Valencia. Alongside the energetic one-off live events that have made Boiler Room a household name, this year’s series will be pairing European techno, house and electro-disco producers with contemporary local acoustic musicians.
In conversation, Steven Appleyard, Chief Business Development Officer at Boiler Room and Tom Elton, Head of Music at Ballantine’s, would provide insight how this year’s groundbreaking mission came to fruition.
Steven Appleyard: “The overarching theme of the project is to represent artists who are doing it their own way. Our mission is to support these artists, these scenes and further them. This project unlocks something new for music fans that neither partner could achieve in isolation. This year, we wanted to work with international talent to get recognition and exposure to what we’re trying to do, but we also wanted to work with local talent. The countries that we’re looking to go to, Russia, Brazil, Lebanon and Spain, have got such an interesting tapestry of contemporary music, so collaboration seemed to make the most sense.”
Tom Elton: “In the past, we’ve done mainly electronic shows, but we always want to keep it fresh, new and exciting. Because you’re doing something from two very different worlds, you’re reaching out to a broader audience. We want people in Brazil to tune in to what’s going on in Lebanon. It’s all about connecting these music communities that are totally thriving. Our job is to create a platform and connect the dots as much as we can.”
By providing a platform for collaboration and exploration for the endless possibilities of fusing synth and organic musical elements they hope to challenge artists out of their comfort zone, creating new sonic landscapes as well as unearthing music communities that might have been overlooked otherwise. The story behind each collaboration will be brought to life through a series of documentaries featuring intimate performances and ‘making of’ footage. These films will explore the creative approaches of the producers and put a spotlight on each city’s local music scene. The exclusive new tracks will feature on the True Music EP that will be released on digital and vinyl later this year.
Find out more about True Music here.
Words by Catarina Ramalho