SPOKESBUZZ's Journey to SXSW and Beyond…

If you think the Colorado music scene isn’t evolving, think again. Over the course of the past several years, what we have come to know about Colorado’s talent level, support for musicians, and overarching conscientiousness about how the music scene aligns with our community as a whole have all shifted. And for the better. We’re stronger, more diverse, better fueled with support, and a much more recognized part of the national music map.
Michael Windham of Trichome
This March, area nonprofit organization
SpokesBUZZ will again embark on a journey to Austin, Texas to attend the South By South- west
(SXSW) Music Festival. The festival is in its 28th year and has grown from a tiny seed- ling of an
event to the largest music festival and industry education forum of its kind in the world. People
from around the globe attend, and this year, in SpokesBUZZ’s fifth year as an organization,
Colorado will have 120+ bands representing our state at their unofficial show- case, the Colorado
Music Party.
Looking back, SpokesBUZZ has come a long way since 2010 when it launched and participated in SXSW
for the first time. With increased donor support, as well as overall contributions to the Colorado
Music Party, the collective of bands, businesses, non-profit agencies, and volunteers from our state headed to Austin to continue putting Colorado on the
national and international music scene. The growth of the measurable impact of this project is significant.
Dani Grant, the visionary and leader behind SpokesBUZZ states, “SpokesBUZZ is excited to see the year-over-year increase in sup-
port for the Colorado Music Party events in Austin. It is amazing that in 2010, Spokes- BUZZ
showcased five bands with $10,000 in sponsorship and reached hundreds of people; in 2015, we will
host over 120 bands with $150,000 of sponsorship and reach tens of thousands of people. The branding of our re- gional music
scene has been highly successful, with many people returning year after year
to see what Colorado has to offer in terms of talent.” When asked how SpokesBUZZ has managed to
become such an integral part of the Colorado Music Party, Grant added, “I be- lieve the marketing
SpokesBUZZ has done via the Colorado Music Party has had a direct and positive impact on the world
view of Colorado as an innovative and artistic market. We also shared New Belgium beer which
The evolution is happening and more people are taking notice of the wealth of
talent this state has, as well as the unique
incubator and support systems designed to further the careers of musicians and improve our economic
vitality as a whole.
Grant added, “It is important for the public to understand that talent development has a direct
impact on economic development, and it’s not sending a musician to violin school. It’s taking
artists and honing their career skills, transitioning them into active entrepreneurs, asking for
wages that will sustain them, and creating more work for a wider range of creative careers like
videographers, content writers, graphic designers and more. Spokes- BUZZ works towards generating
success and development in these creative entrepreneurs. The event in Austin is a huge practicum or
capstone course.”
The Colorado Music Party is now partially supported by Colorado Creative Industries,
an organization that works to effectively pro- mote and sustain the arts in our state. Marga- ret
Hunt, Director, commented, “Supporting the Colorado Music party is a high-impact
way to brand Colorado’s vibrant music
scene while putting local artists in front
of key industry stakeholders. Our specific
focus this year is a Colorado headquarters
that facilitates business-to-business meetups
and media interaction while promoting
Colorado as a destination for music tourism.
Collaboration between the public and private
sector demonstrate a unified message
of pride and support for the Colorado music
community. These partnerships also highlight
the different ways music is integrated
into business, lifestyle, and social causes in
And the support doesn’t end there.
Through tireless messaging and promotion,
and continual public education about
SpokesBUZZ, the Colorado Music Party,
and the overall goals that donors, musicians,
businesses, and agencies have regarding
improving awareness of our talent
pool and offerings, the City of Fort Collins
has jumped on board, offering support and
an identifiable level of understanding regarding
the direct link between the creative
arts and economic health. A statement
issued by representatives of The City of Fort
Collins states, “The City is proud to support
an organization like SpokesBUZZ that nationally
promotes the creative energy in our
community, elevates the economic viability
of artistic endeavors, and accomplishes all
of this in a really entrepreneurial way.”
The Downtown Fort Collins Business Association
is also supportive, and along with
other agencies, including The Bohemian
Foundation, created “Play Fort Collins,”
an entire day of showcases within the
Colorado Music Party 2015 that will feature
Fort Collins acts. The Colorado Music Party
showcases will take place at The 512 Bar,
in the heart of Austin’s downtown on Sixth
Street. March 20 will be the Play Fort Collins
day. Colorado Innovation Network (COIN)
will host the kickoff to the Colorado Music
Party in Austin on March 17. The sixth annual
SpokesBUZZ showcase is March 19,
with five days and nights of showcases
happening through March 21. Dani Grant
noted, “The Play Fort Collins collective is an
example of the progressive and innovative
momentum we are experiencing in Northern
Headed to Austin? Make sure to check
out The Colorado Music Party at The 512
Bar, 408 E. 6th Street, Austin, TX. For information,
visit: coloradomusicparty.com and

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