by Graham Needham
At last a start has been made to properly recognise electronic music in the UK. For far too long electronic music (EM) has been ignored in this country, and indeed still is in many other countries, but now there is an organisation striving to push forward the frontiers of EM. This organisation is known as the "Electronic Music and Musicians Association" or E.M.M.A. for short.
Before I go on we have to understand that EM can take many different forms and styles. Some of these styles are quite distinct and can have fans who like one style screaming blue murder that what the 'other side' play is not electronic music. Well how far wrong can people be? Look at the term "electronic music". What does it suggest to you? Music created electronically? If you answered with something along that line you are right. So why is one 'style' of electronic music not electronic music?
The trouble is that there is too much prejudice in the EM community. I wholly support what E.M.M.A. is all about but there's something sadly lacking somewhere along the line. Why is E.M.M.A. devoted to the softer side of EM? Where is the support for harder styles of EM? If hard, or should I say unconventional, music is created electronically why is it not supported by an organisation called Electronic Music And Musicians Association?
Don't get me wrong I'm not trying to put E.M.M.A. down, far from it. I'm just trying to point out an injustice before things get out of hand or is it already out of hand? As a final comment I would like to point out that because of this prejudice against non classic EM many people are missing out on some great music. Recently crossover styles have been gaining an impact on the traditional EM scene. Look at the success of The Orb and Aphex Twin. If you're a supporter of traditional EM why don't you try Delerium's new CD "Spheres", Sect's "Telekinetic" or if you want to be a little more adventurous X Marks The Pedwalk's "The Killing Had Begun".
What is E.M.M.A.?
E.M.M.A. is an organisation set up to help promote electronic music in the UK. It was formed to keep you, the fans, informed of what is going on as well as promoting EM in any way it can. It will do this through a membership fee by pushing things on the industry side including radio airplay, keeping fans aware and up to date with what is going on and organising events with electronic music.
How do I contact E.M.M.A.?
How do I join?
What does my membership fee get me?
As a member of E.M.M.A. you will get:
1. A free compilation compact disc featuring top UK artists.
2. A regular newsletter to keep you informed.
3. Discounts on compact discs and concert tickets.
4. Reduced entrance fees to events organised by E.M.M.A.
Why should I join?
If you want to be informed you should join. If you want to be a part of the EM revolution you should join. If you want to help the EM industry you must join.
What has E.M.M.A. done so far?
E.M.M.A. organised an electronic music festival on Saturday March 12th 1994. It was a huge success and was supported by many organisations (including Essential Publications) and EM artists. There were many stalls present including mail order companies, magazines (including Sound On Sound) and a electronic music hardware supplier. Along with their own programme several artists contributed to the live show including Mark Shreeve, Ian Boddy, Andy Pickford, John Dyson, Paul Ward and Tranceport.
E.M.M.A. has created a large interest in the music industry already including a variety of media support, started a petition to the major radio stations to play more EM, made more people aware of what EM is all about and is striving for much more It is early days yet.
As the editor of CyberNoise and an integral part of Essential Publications I am willing to support E.M.M.A. for what they stand for but I hope the people on the committee listen out when I warn them of the potential trap they may be facing. They cannot just support one style of electronic music. Without the support for other styles they are not a true representative of electronic music in the UK and they will soon fall into the category of a single voice in a community of many striving for recognition. If that happens then E.M.M.A. will achieve nothing more than the status of an elite group of supporters for traditional EM. Be warned
I attended the E.M.M.A. festival with my colleague Wayne Davis and to put it simply it was superb. The organisation of the event was faultless, the support was very good, the contributors gave their all (including Andy Garibaldi, one of the organisers, running around like a headless chicken) and most essentially the live event was extremely entertaining (watch out for Andy Pickford - amazing). I must extend my thanks and gratitude to all the organisers of the event for a most satisfying weekend. Thank you and see you next time around and I hope to see some of you there too
The rumour is that there may be another event held this autumn. Join E.M.M.A. now to be the first to get details of any future events.
A big part of the support for E.M.M.A. is Ashley Franklin presenter of BBC Radio Derby's "Soundscapes" programme. He was on hand at the event and even gave a small speech on stage before Andy Pickford's set. Whatever style of electronic music you create you should be contacting this man immediately. Get airplay on the only radio programme currently dedicated to EM. Send your music to: