Jim Carroll

Music, Life and everything else

Roll up for HWCH Convention 2016

Dozens of discussions, workshops, conversations and encounters at Ireland’s music convention

Wed, Sep 14, 2016, 13:57


You’ve already seen the list of acts who’ll be playing the Hard Working Class Heroes festival in Dublin from October 6 to 8 and now it’s time for the talkers and thinkers who will be speaking at HWCH Convention 2016. Declaration of interest: I’ve been involved in programming and chairing HWCH Convention since 2009 and it’s always a buzz to see pages and pages of ideas and names get turned over the course of a few months into reality and a schedule.

HWCH Convention takes place at the Chocolate Factory, North King Street, Dublin 1 on Thursday, Friday and Saturday October 6, 7 and 8. Admission to all HWCH Convention events is free and you’ll find the full schedule here.

It’s become a pretty big beast, with three days of discusions, workshops, conversations and the like covering all manner of themes and topics. Here are half-a-dozen highlights from the schedule:

How to Listen to Music Now (Thursday, Main Room, 2pm)

A conversation with Ben Ratliff, New York Times’ music writer, about his book Every Song Ever: How To Listen to Music Now. It’s a fascinating book about how we listen to music in an age when every single song ever recorded is available a click away and the divisions which held sway for decades in terms of genres and music styles no longer apply.

The education panel (Thursday, Main Room, 3pm)

An encounter between the colleges who offer courses for the music business and the music business who are supposed to employ those graduates. Are these courses actually producing the kind of savvy graduates that a modern music business requires? And what exactly is the music business looking for in terms of new hires – and can this be taught in a college? Featuring Alan Cullivan (BIMM Dublin), Ronan Healy (Catapult Events), Dr Niamh Nic Ghabhann (University of Limerick) and Colm O’Sullivan (Today FM Head of Programming)

How Music Works (Thursday-Saturday, Bandcamp Room)

Since March 2015, Nialler9’s How Music Works series in The Irish Times has been profiling those who make their living in the Irish music industry. Over the weekend, Nialler9 brings together up some of his favourite interviewees from the series to date to focus on what a band starting out (Thu), a developing band (Fri) and an established band (Sat) need to know.

Getting media coverage in the US (Friday, Main Room, 4pm)

What do the Yanks want from us? US writers and journalists Amanda Petrusich (The New Yorker, Pitchfork, New York Times etc), Emily McBride (Paste magazine) and Hazel Cills (MTV News) tell us what they’re after when it comes to covering bands and new music.

Meet the artists (Saturday, Main Room, 3pm)

This has been without a shadow of a doubt my favourite panel at HWCH Convention over the last couple of years as a couple of artists come together, sip some beverages and talk about what’s on their mind. This year’s session will feature Bressie (The Blizzards), Murli (Rusangano Family), Lizzie Fitzpatrick (Bitch Falcon) and Sallay Garnett (Loah)

Interview: The radiohead (Saturday, Main Room, 4pm)

A conversation with Chris Douridas from Santa Monica’s KCRW, one of the most important taste-making radio stations in the United States. Aside from presenting and programming for the station, he’s also worked as a music supervisor and as an A&R in the past.