Details of the seventh annual North by Northeast Music Festival and Conference, happening citywide June 7 to 9, were announced this week. Some highlights:
As in years past, things begin in earnest June 5 with a fundraiser for the White Ribbon Campaign -- aiming to end men's violence against women -- hosted by the Tea Party's Jeff Martin along with Moist's David Usher, Matthew Good and belter Todd Kerns, all backed by the Dexters. New this year is a silent auction featuring rock paraphernalia from Oasis, INXS, Foo Fighters and others.
Also new and extremely cool is a companion film fest dubbed SoundVision 01, screening at the Bloor Cinema. In addition to a keynote address by soundtrack composer Alf Clausen (the dude behind the music on The Simpsons), the fest features the Canadian premieres of Southlander (featuring Beck and Beth Orton), Rock Opera and For The Love Of Rock, a rockumentary on chicks in music, among them Jane Siberry and Indigo Girls.
Naturally, gig pigs are called to arms to witness the 400-odd bands and artists playing in T.O. clubs over NXNE weekend -- including Boston's The Pills, Chicago's Songs:Ohia, Kingston's Luther Wright & the Wrongs, Montreal's Les Séquelles, and Toronto's Howie Beck, BrassMunk, Citizen Kane and Nefarious. Shows are accessible by wristband, available for $18 via Ticketmaster as of May 9.
The conference component runs throughout the fest at the Holiday Inn on King. Keynote speaker Danny Goldberg currently heads up Artemis Records and is the former boss of Gold Mountain Entertainment, management home of Nirvana, Sonic Youth and the Beastie Boys. There are outdoor "block parties," too, and a June 6 kick-off at Nathan Phillips Square, talent tba. Yowza. For complete details, see www.nxne.com.