BIGSOUND Reveals Its 2020 Virtual Conference Program + The BIGSOUND50


Top L-R: Ms Thandi, L-FRESH The LION, Memphis LK
Bottom L-R: ASHWARYA, JK-47


The much-anticipated The BIGSOUND50 and conference program have been revealed today, as the 100% virtual and 100% free online BIGSOUND 2020 gets ready to go live in your living rooms, laptop screens, and office spaces on October 21st and 22nd.

The BIGSOUND50 are the handpicked hottest new acts in Australia right now, shining a spotlight on the next crop of emerging music talent. Featuring artists across the spectrum of genres who will be part of BIGSOUND’s famous networking program, the 50 artists will receive coverage across BIGSOUND platforms as well as mentoring, online meetings and opportunities over the coming 12 months to connect with delegates to further their music career and future pathways.

“From The BIGSOUND50 to the conference conversations, First Nations voices are prevalent across the entire event as we hold valued perspectives on re-futuring the music industry,” said First Nations Programmer Alethea Beetson, “Working alongside the festival programmers  to curate The BIGSOUND50 list has led to an even stronger representation of Indigenous artists than ever before at BIGSOUND. This is supported by a First Nations program and a number of decolonial conversations within the wider conference schedule offering solutions to the issues faced by the music industry in 2020.”

The BIGSOUND50 selection includes Dallas Woods, The Merindas, Jaguar Jonze, JK-47, L-FRESH The LION, Sycco, No Money Enterprise, BIRDZ, Memphis LK, Harper Bloom and more. See below for the full list of artists.

“When it became obvious that we wouldn’t be able to do anything physical this year, we came up with a whole new way of showcasing our BIGSOUND artists in 2020” said co-programmer Dom Miller. “The BIGSOUND50 are the 50 artists BIGSOUND believes the world should be paying attention to in 2020 and beyond.”

Co-programmer Ruby-Jean McCabe added; “It was a massive undertaking to narrow down all of the incredible applications to 50, but we have managed to pick a group of talented and inspiring artists that we know will all become household names. We’ve discovered some of our new favourite artists through this process, and we can’t wait to showcase what’s next for The BIGSOUND50.”

The virtual conference program is also revealed today including a keynote from Wait But Why co-founder, and artificial intelligence and creativity thought leader Tim Urban, whose groundbreaking, hilarious, and insightful Ted Talk on procrastination has racked up over 41 million views and changed the way we think about how we think.


Tim is joining previously announced keynote presentations from Tom Morello, Kev Carmody, Tones And I, Amy Shark, Nat’s What I Reckon and more.

BIGSOUND’s full program of thought-provoking topics include the “United Nations of The Music Industry Sh*tshow” featuring industry leaders from the USA, Canada, Singapore, India, Japan, UK, EU and New Zealand coming together to share their insights on rebuilding from COVID-19 in their markets, while “The Future of Event Streaming” will look at the rapid development of music events online and what that means for the future of online events and licensing.

“Pay The Rent” will explore the use of Indigenous quotas across radio, festivals, and streaming as an agent for change, bringing together ABC Radio’s Rhianna Patrick, radio NCI Canada’s Dave Mcleod and SGC Media’s Stephen Green, and “A Licence to Live” explores making a living through composing for video games, ad sync and theme songs, with Doom composer Mick Gordon and million-stream songwriter Nat Dunn. Nat will also be giving hot tips on making hits in your bedroom and creating a home studio and recording from home for “Studio Wars”.

“Beyond the Bla(c)k Tile” will feature Dameeeela, Busty Beatz and more for an honest discussion between people of colour and the music sector about performative allyship and real reparations from the music industry, with pathways and suggestions on how to dismantle and reform the systems from within. L-FRESH The LION has also curated a presentation “Putting Down The Master Tools” which will cover alternative pathways and unpack different models for artists and sustainability in music beyond the mainstream Western music system.

“Cultural Resurgence” will tackle the importance of storytelling and culture in and through music with artists Dr Lou Bennett, Gina Williams, Jeremy Dutcher and Thomas E.S. Kelly, and Ecca VandalMo’Ju, and Kira Puru will lead an honest and personal roundtable discussion on how their lives and livelihoods have been affected by COVID-19.

Dr Guy Morrow will break down extended reality case studies of Bjork’s VR album ‘Vulnicura’ and Florida-based company Magic Leap’s work with Icelandic band Sigur Rós in a special presentation around technology platforms and music, Support Act will provide valuable pathways for various mental health challenges, while workshops on Facebook marketing, Spotify streaming, change management, and financial crisis management will give the practical advice and strategies needed by a community ready to face 2021.

FREE registration for BIGSOUND 2020 is currently open, and the full program schedule is available now at www.bigsound.org.au


L-R: Jaguar Jonze, Aodhan, River Boy


QMusic, producer of BIGSOUND, is assisted by the Australian Government through the Australia Council, its principal arts funding and advisory body.
BIGSOUND is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland and Tourism and Events Queensland and features on the It’s Live! in Queensland events calendar.


Thanks to Title Track

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