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  • Monday, August 17, 2015
    David Byrne's Meltdown Begins at London's Southbank Centre; BBC Radio 6 Music to Celebrate Byrne
    Danny North

    The David Byrne–curated Meltdown festival gets under way at the Southbank Centre in London tonight, continuing through Sunday, August 30. Known for bringing to life the world of its director, Meltdown offers fans insight into artists and ideas that influence and inspire Byrne today. He follows in the footsteps of previous directors including Laurie Anderson, Jarvis Cocker, Patti Smith, David Bowie, Yoko Ono, Ray Davies, and Ornette Coleman.

    At the same time, BBC Radio 6 Music celebrates Meltdown with a series of programs featuring Byrne. For 6 Music Celebrates David Byrne, he will be co-presenting with Lauren Laverne live from the Southbank Centre on Friday, August 21; interviewed by Gilles Peterson on Saturday, August 22; and, making his debut as a 6 Music presenter, presenting his own radio show, a two-hour special airing Sunday, August 23 (4–6 PM). Later on that Sunday, Stuart Maconie presents a Freak Zone special (8–10 PM) devoted to Byrne’s pioneering collaboration with Brian Eno, My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. And 6 Music Celebrates David Byrne will also feature related concert and documentary programming from the BBC Archive.

    "It’s a lot of fun when you do these kind of things you can introduce music," says Byrne, "and people will give you the benefit of the doubt and give it a listen which is a little bit of what’s it’s about."

    Among the many special events at this year's Meltdown, Jonny Greenwood and London Contemporary Orchestra perform his score to Paul Thomas Anderson's Academy Award–winning film There Will Be Blood with Greenwood on the ondes Martenot. The live performance accompanies a screening of the film at Royal Festival Hall this Wednesday.

    The Meltdown line-up spans an eclectic range of musical genres, from afro-funk to flamenco. In Atomic Bomb! The Music of William Onyeabor, on August 20, Byrne will celebrate the music of the African funk master with a band also comprising Sinkane, Money Mark, Pat Mahoney of LCD Soundsystem), Alexis Taylor of Hot Chip, and Mahotella Queens, and more. Theatre also plays a part in Meltdown this year, including the London debut of We’re Gonna Die, in which Byrne performs with Young Jean Lee and her band Future Wife, August 27–30.

    The festival hosts a range of free events based around Byrnes’ chosen artists and specific interests. Following on from Byrnes’ book Bicycle Diaries, both bike racks (designed by David Byrne himself in collaboration with Cyclehoop) and a Bicycle Valet service are offered for cycling ticket holders, to place their bike for safe-keeping whilst viewing a show. In a unique opportunity for artistic insight, Byrne is lending his personal collection of 500 musical books to The Saison Poetry Library, for fans to peruse in the reading lounge and borrow as desired. Artist activity includes a Big Busk, for Meltdown artists and musicians of all levels to gather for a jam; a Big Sing made up of some of Byrnes’ favorite anthems that he compiled especially for the workshop; a Flamenco Social dance and singing workshop; and more.

    For all the details on David Byrne's Meltdown, visit southbankcentre.co.uk/meltdown.

    Journal Articles:Artist NewsOn Tour

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David Byrne's Meltdown Begins at London's Southbank Centre; BBC Radio 6 Music to Celebrate Byrne

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on August 17, 2015 - 9:00am
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Monday, August 17, 2015 - 13:00
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The David Byrne–curated Meltdown festival gets under way at the Southbank Centre in London tonight, continuing through Sunday, August 30. Among Meltdown's many special events, Byrne and band celebrate African funk master William Onyeabor, he joins Young Jean Lee for the London debut of We’re Gonna Die, and Jonny Greenwood and LCO perform his score to There Will Be Blood at a screening of the film. BBC Radio 6 Music celebrates with a series of programs featuring Byrne, including his debut as a 6 Music presenter. "It’s a lot of fun when you do these kind of things you can introduce music," says Byrne, "and people will give you the benefit of the doubt and give it a listen which is a little bit of what’s it’s about."

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The David Byrne–curated Meltdown festival gets under way at the Southbank Centre in London tonight, continuing through Sunday, August 30. Known for bringing to life the world of its director, Meltdown offers fans insight into artists and ideas that influence and inspire Byrne today. He follows in the footsteps of previous directors including Laurie Anderson, Jarvis Cocker, Patti Smith, David Bowie, Yoko Ono, Ray Davies, and Ornette Coleman.

At the same time, BBC Radio 6 Music celebrates Meltdown with a series of programs featuring Byrne. For 6 Music Celebrates David Byrne, he will be co-presenting with Lauren Laverne live from the Southbank Centre on Friday, August 21; interviewed by Gilles Peterson on Saturday, August 22; and, making his debut as a 6 Music presenter, presenting his own radio show, a two-hour special airing Sunday, August 23 (4–6 PM). Later on that Sunday, Stuart Maconie presents a Freak Zone special (8–10 PM) devoted to Byrne’s pioneering collaboration with Brian Eno, My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. And 6 Music Celebrates David Byrne will also feature related concert and documentary programming from the BBC Archive.

"It’s a lot of fun when you do these kind of things you can introduce music," says Byrne, "and people will give you the benefit of the doubt and give it a listen which is a little bit of what’s it’s about."

Among the many special events at this year's Meltdown, Jonny Greenwood and London Contemporary Orchestra perform his score to Paul Thomas Anderson's Academy Award–winning film There Will Be Blood with Greenwood on the ondes Martenot. The live performance accompanies a screening of the film at Royal Festival Hall this Wednesday.

The Meltdown line-up spans an eclectic range of musical genres, from afro-funk to flamenco. In Atomic Bomb! The Music of William Onyeabor, on August 20, Byrne will celebrate the music of the African funk master with a band also comprising Sinkane, Money Mark, Pat Mahoney of LCD Soundsystem), Alexis Taylor of Hot Chip, and Mahotella Queens, and more. Theatre also plays a part in Meltdown this year, including the London debut of We’re Gonna Die, in which Byrne performs with Young Jean Lee and her band Future Wife, August 27–30.

The festival hosts a range of free events based around Byrnes’ chosen artists and specific interests. Following on from Byrnes’ book Bicycle Diaries, both bike racks (designed by David Byrne himself in collaboration with Cyclehoop) and a Bicycle Valet service are offered for cycling ticket holders, to place their bike for safe-keeping whilst viewing a show. In a unique opportunity for artistic insight, Byrne is lending his personal collection of 500 musical books to The Saison Poetry Library, for fans to peruse in the reading lounge and borrow as desired. Artist activity includes a Big Busk, for Meltdown artists and musicians of all levels to gather for a jam; a Big Sing made up of some of Byrnes’ favorite anthems that he compiled especially for the workshop; a Flamenco Social dance and singing workshop; and more.

For all the details on David Byrne's Meltdown, visit southbankcentre.co.uk/meltdown.

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David Byrne 2015 by Danny North: Meltdown

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