Red Bull Music Academy Tour returns October 2016


By Steven Pankhurst | Last updated 9 February 2017

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Red Bull Music Academy has announced plans for its month-long 2016 UK Tour, calling at four UK cities for a series of back-to-back mini-festivals. Rolling into Liverpool, Glasgow, London and Leeds over consecutive weekends, the musical icons and rising stars of each city will be given the platform to throw down and celebrate their contribution to the UK’s scene. They’ll be joined by international names that connect the dots between the UK and a global exchange of musical ideas.

The programme continues the Academy’s nearly 20-year mission to celebrate and educate within music, shining a light on vital artists and movements from music’s past, present and future. Across genres as diverse as hip hop, grime, soul, house, techno, garage and electro, the RBMA UK Tour will present club nights, studio sessions, AV shows, art installations, radio broadcasts and, ever at the centre of the Academy experience, intimate live lectures with some of today’s most important artists. Running concurrently in October, the Red Bull Music Academy itself lands in Montreal, with an accompanying programme of events to be announced.

Featured headline events include lectures from Dizzee Rascal, Young Fathers and Krept & Konan; a coin operated laundrette takeover with Jackmaster; DJ Harvey’s return to Leeds after a hiatus of 25 years; a headline slot for Detroit’s Moodymann with a light show to match; grime showcases marshalled by scene heavyweights Slimzee and D Double E; and workshops with studio experts such as Mumdance, Gorgon City and Shura.


Beginning in Liverpool from 6th – 9th October, things kick off at the city’s Victorian Palm House with a mesmerising showcase of future soul with RBMA alumn Jamie Woon. UK rap duo Krept & Konan sit down for the Tour’s first lecture, chatting about how they maintained their credibility alongside a major label deal, before spotlighting the Future Sounds of Hip Hop in a line up bristling with promise. The weekend also offers a lesson in the scene’s past from one of the masters, Kenny Dope, along with a tantalising proposition as Moodymann takes over with laser modules and mirrored kinetic sculptures. D Double E also lays down the gauntlet to a raft of top MCs for a beatless recital within the city’s imposing St. George’s hall.

The Tour travels north to Glasgow for 13th – 16th October, with D Double E carrying the baton to the GLA x LDN event as the capital and Glasgow sit side by side and DEE and Rinse resident Sir Spiro headline a tale of two scenes. Kölsch takes his live show to Glasgow’s Barrowland Ballroom before hitting Sub Club for the afterparty, DJing in the city’s equally iconic basement, while Numbers put a never before used venue below the city streets to use in their label showcase. Meanwhile local hero Jackmaster turns local laundry emporium Majestic Laundrette into the city’s most unlikely hot ticket for the night at Discospin. Mingling with the enlightened crowds, the University of Glasgow plays host to A Modular Synth Workshop led by Mumdance, and hip hop provocateurs Young Fathers sit down at the Mitchell library to discuss the merging of the musical with the political.

Returning to the nation’s capital, London takes 19th – 22nd October, hosting one of the most anticipated dates of the tour, as grime kingpin turned pop king Dizzee Rascal hits the Red Bull Music Academy couch to discuss his ascent from Bow to the big time. Elsewhere chart-bothering DJ duo Gorgon City conduct a workshop at Red Bull HQ, and a Red Bull Music Academy special sees SLG’s Clore Studio and pioneering events programmers Thirty Three Thirty Three continue their collaborative art and music series with 003, with music from Rezzett. Jay Prince will bring his brand-new mixtape, recently recorded at Red Bull Studios, to light with the help of collaborators and special guests, Awesome Tapes From Africa celebrates a decade of digging at Corsica Studios and Lady Leshurr drops into Red Bull Studios to lay her lyrical wit bare at Studio Science.

On its final stop, the tour lands in Leeds from 27th – 30th October, where grime legend Kano sits down with friend and collaborator Hattie Collins, who’ll also be revealing a new exhibition ‘An Eye On Grime’, exploring the scene’s relationship with photography. An all-Berlin techno takeover hits Wire, featuring Berghain resident Marcel Dettmann, before another top of the range DJ billing sees Canal Mills welcome DJ Harvey back to Leeds. There’s also a special Halloween treat, as indie-horror smash It Follows plays at the Hyde Park Picture House, with composer Disasterpiece’s now famous score arranged and played live by 2016 Academy participant Emma Jean Thackray and seven musicians.