It’s summer music festival time in New England. Outside the Box took to the Common last week, and this coming weekend is Newport Folk. Here’s the rest of the news from the local music scene this past week.

WGBH Joins VuHaus

As Berklee hosts the Open Music Initiative to help streamline artist compensation in the 21st century, WGBH is also hopping on the innovation-through-streamlining train. The local PBS station is now curating a page on VuHaus, a digital music service that hosts a collection of performance videos and interviews with musicians from various radio stations and other vetted public media organizations. WGBH joins stations such as NYC’s WFUV, Seattle’s KEXP, and Austin KUTX. Videos on WGBH’s page on VuHaus features their “Front Row Boston” series, which includes performances by Punch Brothers at House of Blues, St. Paul and the Broken Bones at the Paradise, and Lucius at House of Blues. With its team of big-name stations, VuHaus will hopefully be able to create national exposure for artists.

Disposable America Mixtape Supports Pulse Victims

Allston record label Disposable America released a mixtape, titled Special Interest, of previously unreleased tracks that features a number of local artists, including Horse Jumper of Love, halfsour, and Lost Film. A “Front Row Boston” feature premiered Special Interest‘s opening track, a cover of The Smith’s “Ask” by Infinity Girl. But most importantly — 100% of the album sales (it only costs $5 and has 26 tracks) will go to the Pulse Tragedy Community Fund, which is giving the money to the victims and their families. Please, buy a copy!


Richard Branson Backs Sofar Sounds

Sofar Sounds, who have hosted over 4,000 intimate live shows across the globe over the last six years (we at Sound of Boston hosted one last June), have received a noteworthy endorsement – one from Virgin’s Richard Branson. Virgin consists of over 400 companies, including Virgin Atlantic Airways, Virgin Mobile, and Virgin Records. Last year, Forbes valued Branson’s net worth at $4.8 billion. In a post on Virgin’s website, Branson wrote, “There will be 290 events this month, and the average show is oversubscribed by 10 to one. This is the main reason I am excited to be investing in Sofar – the opportunity to help it expand and reach even more music fans. By creating more events in its inimitable style, they will in turn be able to support even more artists.”

In a response to questions about the nature of Virgin’s relationship with Sofar, Sofar co-founder Rafe Offer insisted in a Facebook post that “there are no strings attached to this. We are not changing to Virgin Sofar, we are not agreeing to meet their targets financially or otherwise. Sofar have set goals that excited Virgin. Which are simply to continue to grow Sofar the way we are. The main thing is keeping Sofar the way it is.” Sofar has not specified exactly what the investment entails.


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