Music festival and conference mash up brings aspiring musicians to viewers at home
By Raymond Ward, The New 411
Springboard Music Festivals, dubbed the “music discovery festival,” announces its 14th event and first ever virtual music event, Springboard Midwest. The online event, originally slated to debut to audiences in Chicago this summer, will now stream to viewers on Twitch, Instagram, YouTube and Facebook Live on September 12 starting at 2 p.m.-10 p.m. CST and will showcase artists and performers, from the Midwest and all around the world. “As the world faces the pandemic head on, the music industry is faced with the challenge of keeping the arts present and alive,” said CEO and Founder of Springboard Music Festivals, Barry Coffing. “In times like these, the arts have the power to enlighten the world and lighten the heavy load of the harsh reality so many of us are facing. While a virtual event doesn’t replace our traditional festivals, we hope that it will bring some semblance of happiness to our viewers and fans.” The conference and festival kicks off a two-day “Band Bootcamp,” where all previous Springboard mentors, performers and artists are invited to attend virtual workshops, panels and pitch sessions with veterans and professionals in the music industry.
The non-profit event supports performing artists, the music, non-profits and venues. Festival attendees are urged to contribute and support through a virtual tip jar. “As long as we go on, it will play on. We will sing, dance, love, cry, work, study, and march to the sound of music. What the world needs now is love and great music,” added Coffing.
Money goes back to the music community and non-profits: Millikin University, Berwin Public Art Initiative and Music Over Miles.
A local Chicago artist Xavier Keyz will be featured. Keyz has no intention of redefining R&B. On the contrary. It is his passion for classic soul that continues to make the artist a standout among so many gimmick-ridden acts currently pervading the airwaves.
Born and raised in Chicago, Xavier Keyz (a.k.a. Cameron Frazier) began singing at age 2!. He recalls, “It was Faith Evans’ hit ‘Soon As I Get Home.’ I sang it out loud to my parents and friends and they all gave me this look of surprise. I was just learning to speak and yet I was delivering verses and choruses, and they were in tune!” From that point on, there was little doubt that music was destined to become the major force field in his life. He took to the piano as if he had played it all of his life —playing any song by ear. And thus was born his lifetime moniker: Xavier Keyz.
“I’m the perfect example of someone that knows that if you believe in yourself and never allow your vision to be diminished by circumstances or the negativity of others, success will find you. I know I have what it takes to shine in a crowded field. It takes perseverance, of course, but this is where I belong. Next year by this time, I have a strong feeling that my name will be known!”
To learn more about the music discovery festival, log onto [www.springboardfest.com].