By Sara Solomon
Conferences and music festivals come with the territory for 3300+Climbing. We attend them for obvious reasons: To network, learn, catch up with old friends from other parts of the music industry, and (here’s an obvious one) to listen to great music (signed and unsigned). Which is why this past weekend, 3300+Climbing was all over downtown Orlando for the sixteenth annual Florida Music Festival. To put it simply, it was a 3300+Climbing intern’s dream weekend. A handful of our interns volunteered to help with the festival Thursday through Saturday. EBMS student Saquan Johnson and MBBS students Denesha Valentine and Amanda McCarty were on site all weekend, not only representing 3300+Climbing but also representing Full Sail as a whole.
And if our interns weren’t helping with FMF, they were indeed in the crowd at industry panels or in front of one of the many stages between Wall and Church Street for the artist showcase, which consisted of over 125 artists and bands. In detail, social media intern Sergio Lugo covered every single panel and gave live play by play tweets for those who couldn’t make it to FMF. At the same time, production coordinator Nestor Vera ran around in between panels networking like a boss. Popping in and out of venues along Wall, Church, and Orange Streets, Outreach coordinator and Social Media coordinator Danny and Claire scoped out talent in the evenings. Because it’s always a good thing to get to know the local Florida music scene.
The panels were informative, the guest speakers were amazing (shout out to keynote speaker Aton Ben-Horin), and the shows were loud and fun as they should be. A few bands and artists obviously stood out to us (and to the rest of the downtown). Local favorite Beebs and Her Moneymakers convinced an insanely packed Wall Street Plaza to party in the rain on Friday, ending FMF day two the best way possible. Saturday was even more packed, with the rock band King Complex blowing everyone’s minds with their mysterious black masks and a captivating audio-visual show. Rock/hip-hop band On The Avenue, with style similar to The Black Eyed Peas, quickly started a dance party right in front of Cantina. Immediately after, rock band Kasson (think of them as Imagine Dragon’s little brother) took to the stage and continued said dance party with the crowd. And these bands weren’t even the last of great music. Aymber, Vioelectric, and The Supervillains all drew big crowds consisting of both industry professionals and casual music lovers. This past weekend was definitely a memory maker for 3300+Climbing. FMF was a huge success and we can't wait to network with more professionals and listen to more bands next year!
By Claire Contevita
This weekend marks the 16th annual Florida Music Festival in Downtown Orlando. The festival has prided itself on bringing the most promising acts to the forefront with past artists including, then unknown Taylor Swift in 2003, Third Eye Blind, and Flogging Molly. This year promises to bring just as many unique multi-genre acts to the Central Florida area.
FMF includes conference seminars with many diverse industry professionals including, Dan Larson, event promoter at Soundslinger, which put on this years inaugural Okeechobee Music & Arts Festival. There will also be a demo session with A&R reps from various record labels including, Full Sail MBBS grad Chris Martignago. Then the highlight of the festival is a conversation with Keynote speaker Aton Ben-Horin, who is the former owner of Plush Studio in Orlando, and current Global Vice President of A&R for Warner Music Group.
Along with seminars with global industry professionals, FMF has over 50 artists on over a dozen stages including, Blue Man Group, Beebs and Her Moneymakers, and 3300+Climbing’s own top 3 artist Beemo. And as a special treat, this year Full Sail Students can attend the festival for free! Visit the Connect homepage for more information on how to grab your free admission pass. To check out the full schedule of events for FMF, visit their website at www.floridamusicfestival.com.
Written By Holly Walny
Eye Candy is Central Florida’s newest Top 40 cover band. But they are not just any old run-of-the-mill cover band. They bring a unique energy and life to Top 40 that just isn’t done by bands that frequent hole-in-the-wall type bars. And their take on Top 40 is just as unique as the names of the members of the band. The band consists of 6 members including, Bingo on lead vocals, Liette on lead vocals, Shak on guitar & vocals, Abel on keyboards & vocals, Po Boi on drums & vocals, and 3 on bass. Eye Candy has played at Shepard’s in Clearwater, Blue Martini in Orlando, Naples, and Tampa, and they have a regular gig at Tin Roof in Orlando. Now the band has brought their fun take on pop music to Full Sail University.
On Tuesday night, Eye Candy blew students away with their performance in the Live Venue. From current pop hits to hits from the 90s, Eye Candy had the crowd cheering and engaged during the entire concert. They started their set out with a unique rendition of “Use Somebody” by Kings of Leon. From then on out, the crowd was taken on a pop journey that covered the likes of Miley Cyrus, Lauren Hill, Mariah Carey, Adele, Usher, and Sam Smith. Lead vocalists Bingo and Liette brought their “A” game as they powered through hits never missing a note.
Highlights from the set included some unique mash-ups. From beginning with “Dark Horse” by Katy Perry to leading into “She Knows” by Neyo, it was easy to tell that this band has something special. They even performed a flawless CeeLo Green and Meghan Trainor mash-up that had the crowd moving. It was clear to see that Eye Candy loves mash-ups, and they do it so well. Then lead vocalist, Liette, showed her vocal talent with an Ariana Grande medley, making it hardly recognizable if Ariana was actually in the Full Sail Live Venue or not (the girl has got some serious skills!). In fact, the whole band is amazingly talented. Drummer Po Boi put his back into every song and drum hit. His unique take on drumming, especially on “One Last Time” giving it a Cuban club vibe, was a pleasant surprise. And guitarist Shak did not sleep on his guitar solos. He absolutely blew the crowd away on solos during Guns N’ Roses “Sweet Child of Mine.”
The stage presence brought the performances to another level. During each song, Liette and Bingo maneuvered the whole stage keeping the energy consistently high. It was also easy to see the supportive relationship that the band members have with one another. They praised each other during instrumental solos, and were all smiles during the almost two hour long performance. The guys had amusing stage banter with one another, and the crowd could just tell that they were having fun. It was clear to see that the members of Eye Candy are no rookies to live performances, and it pays off. But don’t just take our word for it; you can catch Eye Candy performing all around the Central Florida area. Trust us, you won’t want to miss an Eye Candy party!
Written By Holly Walny
The Strange Trip is a rock band from Orlando that draws heavy on psychedelic, rockabilly, and blues influences. The band has been around since 2011, and consists of member, Jason Cavett, Trevor Brown, and Joe Varney. The band has been playing shows around the Central Florida area including, Backbooth, The Social, Dunedin Brewery, and Tanqueray just to name a few. On Monday April 18th, the band brought their unique rock sound to the Full Sail Live Venue.
This show was a part of the campus Show Production degree’s final project, and they pulled out all the stops. The lighting reminisced of a 60’s nightclub flashing bring colors over the band and the audience, all while hallucinogenic images played on the projection screen behind the band. The stage was set for a trippy psychedelic show and the guys did not disappoint. The Strange Trip began their set switching between songs that had blues and funk influences similar to something Stevie Wonder would have played in the early 70's. There were even blues vibes reminiscent of The John Mayer Trio, which is John Mayer's heavily blues influenced side project with partners Pino Palladino and Steve Jordan.
Towards mid-set, songs with reggae rock vibes were sprinkled in perfectly, propelling the vibe already set forth. The guys even experimented with grunge rock, with a tune that was audibly reminiscent of mid 90’s Pearl Jam. But perhaps the most surprising thing was the way lead singer Jason Cavett really showed his guitar skills on his Fender Stratocaster. This was most notable on the surf rock inspired instrumental songs towards the end of their set. The songs seemed to flow together perfectly as the band took the Full Sail Live Venue on a unique multi-genre rock journey.
The guys in The Strange Trip are able to encompass vibes of reggae, funk, ska, surf rock, blues, and alternative rock in a way not easily done. The bands ability to embody many different genres, and not seem like a mediocre garage band, is truly a one of a kind feat. The show the guys put on was the perfect thing to take away our Monday blues. You can catch the band at Tanqueray’s in Orlando at an upcoming show on May 4th. Check them out and let them take you on a strange trip.
Written by Holly Walny
This is a blog following the students' work at 3300+ Climbing.