BBC Music has announced the inaugural BBC Music Day – a nationwide celebration of music. On Friday 5 June 2015, BBC Music Day aims to bring people together across generations and communities through their love of music.
This unique day will feature live music events and performances involving both well-known musicians and local communities across the UK and the BBC’s Performing Groups, and will be broadcast on BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 3, BBC 6 Music, Asian Network, BBC Local Radio, at bbc.co.uk/musicday, plus BBC One’s The One Show will be broadcasting live from the Music Day event in Glasgow. There will also be an official World Record attempt between Wales and Patagonia, which will be simulcast on BBC Radio Cymru, BBC Radio 3 and BBC Radio Wales.
The dawn to dusk day of celebration involves musical events in more than ten UK towns and cities, with a number of star names acting as BBC Music Day Ambassadors: these include singers Tom Jones, Lulu, Ricky Wilson, Ricky Ross, Rae Morris and George Ezra; producer Mark Ronson, beatboxer Shlomo, Bollywood singer Kanika Kapoor, Only Men Aloud’s Tim Rhys Evans, and conductor Charles Hazlewood. The Ambassadors will be championing BBC Music Day. Some will be doing this through live performances on the day, others will be taking part in radio and television programmes, others will be supporting Music Day on social media and on the website.
As part of the event, the BBC is launching BBC Music Day’s Unsung Heroes, a UK-wide search for individuals who have made or are continuing to make a big contribution to music in their community. People around the country are being asked to nominate their local music champion – someone who has had a significant impact on music in their area and who stands out through their dedication to music, for example by supporting young musicians or setting up a community choir. From all the nominations, a BBC panel will compile a shortlist from which they will select five winners who will receive a BBC Music VIP Pass, giving them and their friends tickets to the BBC Music event of their choice, from the BBC Proms to the BBC Music Awards to the Radio 2 Folk Awards and beyond. The opportunity to nominate opens today and closes on Friday 24 April. Full details are at bbc.co.uk/musicday
Bob Shennan, Controller Radio 2, 6 Music, Asian Network and Director, BBC Music says: “BBC Music Day is a unique opportunity for people to celebrate music and musical talent, whether attending one of the many events taking place or tuning in at home. Honouring music’s Unsung Heroes is a key part of the initiative as there are so many people around the country who do great work in their communities and it’s time for their dedication and achievements to be recognised.”
BBC Music Day kicks off with ‘Hadrian’s Wall of Sound’ – a unique, visually spectacular musical relay from Bowness on Solway to Wallsend. Hundreds of musicians from diverse communities along the wall will journey by bicycle, horse, open top vintage bus, motorbike and unicycle, passing a baton from performer to performer. The music will start at daybreak in West Cumbria and finish in North Tyneside – 73 miles and 14 hours later. This ambitious feat will be reflected live on BBC Radio 3 – led by the BBC Singers – and on BBC local radio, BBC Radio 6 Music and BBC Look North (North East and Cumbria).
The day culminates in a fantastic BBC Music Night concert from Glasgow’s City Halls where a range of fantastic artists from different genres will perform with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra. The event will be hosted by Radio 2’s Ken Bruce and BBC Radio 3’s Katie Derham and simulcast live on BBC Radio Scotland, BBC Radio 2, BBC Radio 3 and BBC Red Button, with BBC Asian Network airing Jaz Dhami’s performance. The Glasgow event will be the focal point of a five day Festival of Music at BBC Scotland’s HQ in Pacific Quay.
Among the towns and cities who will host BBC Music Day events are Belfast, Bradford, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool and Plymouth. Events that take place on Friday 5 June range from a live broadcast of BBC Radio 3’s In Tune in Bradford to coincide with the city’s World Curry Festival, to a special performance of Craig Charles’ BBC Radio 6 Music’s Funk and Soul show in Liverpool. Other highlights are the first ever concert in the Crumlin Road Gaol and an attempt to break a Guinness World Records title with a link-up facilitated by BBC Radio Cymru between singers in Cardiff and Patagonia and accompanied by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales. This World Record attempt will also be simulcast on BBC Radio Wales and BBC Radio 3. BBC Music Day will also feature an inter-generational, special educational needs and disability concert with members of Charles Hazlewood’s British Paraorchestra in Bristol.
BBC Music Day Ambassador Charles Hazlewood says: “Music is the most universal language we have, way more so than any dialect or tongue, and every person on the planet engages with music on a daily basis. The music industry in the UK is a world leader. It’s highly appropriate then, that the BBC should devote a whole day to celebrating these absurdly musical isles.”
Ricky Wilson, Kaiser Chiefs’ lead singer and coach on BBC One’s The Voice said: “Some of us catalogue our life through music… and we all have a song we love and most of us have a song we love to hate! I’m supporting BBC Music Day because love it or loathe it – music affects us all.”
Singer Lulu, says: “BBC Music Day is important because it’s a chance for us all to get together – young and old, from every community across the UK – to celebrate what music means to us. Only the BBC could do this. I’m proud to be a BBC Music Day Ambassador.”
Singer-songwriter Rae Morris, says: “I’m truly honoured to be an ambassador for BBC Music Day. The BBC has played a huge part in my journey so far. Without BBC Introducing and support from Radio 1, 2 and 6 Music, I definitely wouldn’t be in the very fortunate position I am in today. This feels like a great opportunity for me to thank the BBC for their support so far and also to celebrate their great work; providing us all with constant access to the things we love and opening doors to endless pathways of new musical knowledge!”
Bollywood singer Kanika Kapoor says: “Music spans the different languages and continents, generations and communities around the globe so I’m delighted to be supporting BBC Music Day.”
One Direction says: “On BBC Music Day our tour will see us playing in Cardiff’s Millenium Stadium. We hope wherever you are you have as much fun as we will! Music brought us together, and every day we love what we do. Get involved, play, sing and have a good time.”
Brit Award-winning singer George Ezra says: “The BBC have been there right from the start for me and everything that’s happened to me over the past two years all started at BBC Introducing, so thanks to the BBC and wishing them all the very best for BBC Music Day!”
Tenor Noah Stewart says: “Music is the number one international language in the world that connects and binds us. It provides a steady heartbeat of joy, inspiration and healing. Let us celebrate together the power and beauty of music.”