It is often said that much of Malta’s talented youth, be it in academia, art, or athleticism, has to move abroad to fully excel in their chosen fields. This is certainly true in the case of London - much of Malta’s musical braindrain ends up in the capital of England, and a strong link between Malta and London has developed over the past few decades.
Born out of this link is Malta Takes London (MTL), a night dedicated to Maltese musicians, right in the middle of Camden Town. Thirteen bands and two DJs will be taking over the Proud Galleries for a night of original tunes to showcase their work in the global city.
Created by musicians for musicians, MTL will be bringing Maltese artists based in London together with local Maltese artists for one night to help promote and expose quality Maltese artists.
With local favourites like The Ranch, BILA and Brodu, to more out-there bands like Nbome, to Junior Eurovision star Federica all taking the stage, the night is set to be high in great Maltese content.
Organised by Nick Morales and Craig Rogerson – who will both be performing in their respective bands on the night – this year’s organisation team has expanded with the addition of Ben Vincenti and Rachel Fenech from the Trackage Scheme team. As Ben Vincenti and Craig Rogerson explain, MTL is becoming an important annual fixture for Maltese musicians looking for foreign exposure.
“Malta is bursting with talent and we are just trying to do our part in creating a fun event to celebrate this while giving the artists opportunity to perform in front of new crowds and network with new people,” says Ben.
“It’s a collective where the purpose is to showcase Maltese talent. It also serves as a stepping stone for Maltese artists and event organisers to make new connections and expand the concept of exporting Maltese artists to perform in new countries. The same is true of encouraging the import of foreign artists to perform in Malta. Through MTL, three different organisers are uniting and collaborating for the greater good of the Maltese music scene.”
With many Maltese artists looking to expand beyond Malta’s shores, or even attempt to reach a crowd that might appreciate their music more, MTL is a perfect way for bands and singers to perform in London.
Proud is a great venue and it has a great history of being a top music venue
“The event does indeed help to increase the artist’s awareness while giving them the opportunity to connect with new people,” says Craig.
“We have even seen a few collaborations blossom between artists from the event. This year there is a really varied line-up and will kick off earlier than usual from 1pm next Sunday - we are super looking forward to it!” he says.
MTL has previously filled renowned London venues like Water Rats and Surya, but this year MTL has expanded to the much larger Proud Galleries.
“Each year we look for the best venue possible and this year Proud welcomed the event immediately,” says Ben. “Proud is a great venue and it has a great history of being a top music venue. It’s quite central to London being in the heart of Camden and we look forward to welcoming the music lovers of London.”
Trackage Scheme’s involvement this year is testament to its growth, with the alternative music hub taking care of some key organisational areas in support of this event, as Ben explains.
“Trackage Scheme’s vision has always been to be Malta’s leading platform to showcase local talent in an international spotlight. So when we saw that Craig and Nicky were working on a project to export Maltese talent to perform in London, we jumped at the opportunity to get involved and to help. I felt that these guys are doing a great thing for Malta and wanted to be a part of it as I knew that with our strong following and numerous services TS could reach out to a wider audience and deliver value.”
“In fact,” he continues, “we developed a Crowdfunding platform specifically to raise funds for Malta Takes London 2016, set up the event ticketing for both the pre-party as well as the main event in London, managed to secure a number of generous sponsorships and through our marketing efforts, helped create a lot of excitement around this year’s edition.”
Trackage Scheme’s Crowdfunding scheme has a lot of goodies for people willing to donate in support of this event.
“There are lots of fun things that donors can get their hands on,” says Ben happily. “All of the artists have donated to the platform including items like Albums and EPs or T-shirts. We even have music lessons up for grabs and a private living room gig! Readers should head to crowdfunding.trackagescheme.com to get involved.”
With this edition looking to be one to remember, Ben and Craig wants to invite artists interested in being involved in next year’s event to work on their music and stay busy.
“We’re always looking out for new projects to include in the line up and we invite acts who are active and passionate about what they are doing. This year we’ll be seeing the likes of The Ranch and Nbome joining us which are fun new projects. We also have DJs that will finish off the night, including Michael Bugeja and Ben Vincenti himself ,” Craig says.
If you are planning on being in London on November 6 and want to hear some good new Maltese music, or you just want to listen to some good new Maltese music and have a free weekend, head to the Proud Galleries in Camden for a night on the rock, off the rock.
Malta Takes London will be held on November 6 in the Proud Galleries, London.
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