We’re getting closer and closer to the most wonderful time of year once again—and in retrospect, October creeps up a lot faster than you think. Last year was my first year attending the annual CMJ Music Marathon—reporting on-site for The Aquarian Weekly—and it’s surreal for me personally to reflect back on how quickly time has passed since then. I’ll never forget spending the entire week adventuring up-and-down Manhattan—trying to fit in as much as possible with a mapped-out schedule in one hand, and subway train directions scribbled down in the other. There were so many showcases, intriguing panels and many other events on my radar, so I made sure I planned ahead without feeling too overwhelmed.
With all of that time spent running around and lack of sleep I endured throughout the week, I had the chance to catch many memorable sets from some of my favorite artists in attendance, including Marissa Nadler, Have Mercy, Field Mouse, Nai Harvest and Sorority Noise, just to name a few. Finding their music through checking out these uniquely placed showcases, I was also captivated by sets from bands like Ballet School, Dune Rats and Braeves and also discovered some of my favorite venues in the city. It was definitely a lot to sink in, but man, what a time to be alive. Now, here we are again in full circle—and needless to say, there are many things to look forward to about this year’s CMJ festivities that will make your jaw drop.
As the initial lineup for this year’s CMJ Music Marathon was announced in early September, there were a lot of groups that caught my eye. With a weeklong festival lineup that includes names like Frankie Cosmos, The Joy Formidable, Titus Andronicus and Panda Bear, there’s no question that we’re in for another exciting year filled with energetic shows and exciting vibes. But to add groups like Motion City Soundtrack and The Wonder Years to the mix—not only did this announcement take me by surprise, I also considered it to be the icing on this bountiful cake. Considering that The Wonder Years are coming back into town just in time to start their headlining tour in support of No Closer To Heaven, I am sure their show will be one not to miss during the week of CMJ.
Upon my own discovery, there are also many other showcases that piqued my interest, including the Brooklyn Vegan & Collect Records showcase at Baby’s All Right in Brooklyn on Oct. 14. While Philadelphia-based shoegaze heroes Nothing had to drop, this show will feature live performances from the likes of Creepoid, Wax Idols and former Thursday frontman Geoff Rickly’s latest musical endeavor, No Devotion. Big Picture Media will also be hosting their annual showcase on Oct. 17 at Arlene’s Grocery featuring Jocelyn & Chris Arndt, Lost In Society, A Love Like Pi and many more. Also, don’t forget to check out Speak Into My Good Eye’s showcase at Littlefield in Brooklyn on Oct. 15, featuring Jersey acts Julian Fulton and Deal Casino, along with local Brooklyn-based groups Mount Sharp and A Deer A Horse.
From Oct. 13-17, 2015, CMJ’s annual Music Marathon is the epicenter for extensive live performances that will take place in some of New York City’s most iconic concert venues. These weeklong festivities will also host four-day conference events with renowned industry speakers, an Entertainment Business Law Seminar and College Day—dedicated specifically for college and non-commercial radio programmers. For a complete list of artist showcases, industry panels, seminar conferences and more, go to cmj.com/marathon.