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SoundTrack Cologne Examines Music in Film & Games

It is fascinating to see what an impression video game music has made on people over the decades. You can talk to someone that claims to have no interest in videogames or knowledge of music, but they can instantly recognize the the jaunty theme from Super Mario Bros. A Russian folk-song, Korobeinki, is now forever associated with falling blocks. Not to mention there has been a rise in bands that emulate the music of video games from the 80’s and 90’s, and even an entire rock operas composed based on stories from games. So SoundTrack Cologne (November 21 - 24, 2013, various locations), now in its 10th installment, celebrates music in games and movies, which propel us ever forward to the controller or to the box office.

Along with assembling experts and professionals that compose music for the film industry, SoundTrack Cologne examines the importance of music in gaming. In the panel series Composing For Games, Jason Graves (Tomb Raider, Deadspace), Greg Edmonson (Uncharted) and Knut Avenstroup-Haugen (Age of Conan) discuss their careers and the challenges of composing music for games and digital media. Graves, Haugen, and Edmonson will also be running a series of workshops individually

Following the talks, the Kölner Philharmonie, the WDR Rundfunkorchester, along with the band Spark, will put on a concert featuring songs from games including The Legend of Zelda and Super Mario Galaxy. For those of you in Cologne unable to get a ticket because it’s sold out, or those of you living in another country, the show will be broadcast on the WDR Livestream.

Besides celebrating music in games, Sountrack Cologne host the See the Sound Festival of Films about Music, and screen films including: The Punk Singer, Trains of Thought, and Kidd Life.

SoundTrack Cologne embodies the powerful sway that music can have in media. Whether it’s a catchy tune that motivates us to jump on another turtle, or a swelling orchestral score in a film.

To learn more, go to:

SoundTrack Cologne
November 21 - 24, 2013

Various Locations

Kyary Pamyu Live at San Fran J-Pop Summit

Do you like pop music, but wish there were more colors and sense assaulting costumes? Japanese pop star Kyary Pamyu Pamyu will be appearing at San Francisco’s J-Pop Summit Festival (July 27 – 28, 2013). Kyary, who’s single PonPonPon has over 50 million views on Youtube, will be putting on a free concert, as part of the festival’s theme of “Making Kawaii Universal.” Kyary will also appear with designer Sebastion Masuda, founder of the 6%DOKIDOKI fashion brand. Along with the concert there will also be a special Harajuku Kawaii!! Pop-Up Shop where you can buy some of the latest clothes from out of Tokyo from labels like  6%DOKIDOKI, MILK, MILK BOY, SPINS, INNOCENT WORLD, GLAD NEWS, ON THE COUCH, Candies, Hell Cat Punks, Omocha-Party, and NADIA.

While not the first time Japanese pop and fashion had attempted to court major audiences (Pizzicato 5, the darlings of Shibuya, used to be on heavy rotation on MTV), but the release of Gwen Stefani’s Love. Angel. Music. Baby. in 2004 coupled with the anime boom of the early oughts, caused Harajuku fashion to go from an obscure oddity tucked away on the other side of the globe to an international phenomenon.  The J-Pop Summit of San Francisco, and its sister festival, The Japan Film Festival, brings this unique facet of Japanese culture to the states.

To learn more, go to

J-Pop Summit Festival
July 27 – 28, 2013

San Francisco

Firefly Fest 2013 Lights Up Delaware

firefly posterAfter it’s breakout premiere in 2012, the Firefly Music Festival (June 21 – 23, 2013) returns to the Dover International Speedway (1131 N Dupont Hwy Dover, DE). Firefly is a music fest with a down-home, friendly camping atmosphere and none of the horrible irony that happens when you try to do the same thing while invoking Woodstock (I’m looking at you, 1994 and 1999).

The lineup features over 40 bands, including:

  • Red Hot Chili Peppers
  • Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers
  • Japandroids
  • Vampire Weekend
  • Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  • Foster the People
  • MGMT
  • The Lumineers
  • Kishi Bashi
  • A Silent Film
  • Foxygen
  • The Avett Brothers

Along with the musical festivities, Firefly also has a number of attractions for when you wana take a break.  There's a free-to-play vintage arcade in case you feel like playing some Street Fighter instead of listening to Otherside for the one millionth time. Egalitarian footwear provider, Toms, will be on site selling shoes that you can then have customized by their team of “expert artists.” When you need a little quiet time, there’s the Hammock Hangout, which provides, well, hammocks. And lastly, The Pathway is a forest clearing full of light and video displays and provide something bright and shiny to look at when your buddies get baked out of their minds.

So invest in some Birkenstocks, grab some bug spray, and come to Firefly to enjoy the great outdoors with some outstanding bands.

To learn more, go to:

Firefly Music Festival
June 21 – 23, 2013

Dover International Speedway
1131 N Dupont Hwy
Dover, DE 19901

White Light Festival Brings Global Dance and Music to Lincoln Center

kiran ahluwalia

Touted as “a concert-hall sanctuary from the storm and stress of urban life,” The White Light Festival (October 18 – November 18, 2012) at Lincoln Center (10 Lincoln Center Plaza, NYC) brings together unique examples of dance from the U.K., Ireland, China, France, India and more.

White Light features concerts and musical performers as well, mixing Chinese harps with seductive Indian-Punjabi vocals, while theatrical productions mix the works of Kafka and Becket with German dance troupes.

Read more: White Light Festival Brings...

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