March 21, 2023


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How the Rev Family Built Minecraft’s Largest Virtual Music Festival – Variety

4 min read

Jackie McGuire, CEO and founder of the production company Rev. Family, music has always seemed more like a hobby but with a growing career in finance, McGuire decided to take part in an EDM festival so he could blow the steam – until the opening of Camp EDC in 2018. Opportunity does not go to his lap.

While hoping to travel from festival to festival on a 40-foot long school bus she bought with her husband, McGuire became increasingly concerned about the accessibility of these events. Tickets were incredibly expensive, most of them were not wheelchair friendly and even camping was a hindrance. What started by emailing a list of damage-reduction services to the organizers of Camp EDC was transformed into making thousands of sleeping bags and pillows for the festival’s general store – and the Rev family was born.

Moving on to 2020, the Rave family is fully prepared to launch the largest – and most accessible – music festival ever with 900 artists and 85 stages in the video game Minecraft. The Rao Family Block Fest is held this weekend (July 9-13).

After a tough spring – McGuire quit his job as a data scientist at a cyber security firm and signed a COVID-19 deal with his three children – the idea of ​​a virtual EDM festival began to flourish. When her kids introduced her to Minecraft, McGuire contacted friends connected to the DJ, and a few others who became Minecraft developers, it created a snowball effect that was just rolling.

“I just chose a virtual music festival that would be accessible to everyone around the world, but also to artists,” says McGuire. Diversity. “There are about a thousand artists in this lineup and that’s because we let artists book other artists. We said, ‘If you think you have a lot of creative direction and if you know someone you want to book who is probably not booked to play a festival, we’d like to revise a lineup of your own. ‘”

The result is a roster that varies in every way: popularity level, gender, race and sub-genre. Big names like A-Track, MK, Maya Jane Coles, Rudiantal, Kruangbin, Griffin, Steve Aoki and Paris Hilton have been reduced to the same font size in the event poster, which is listed in alphabetical order. No title.

“When you don’t keep a gate-keeper and the numbers don’t keep you from booking who you are, you’ll end up with a significantly more representative lineup in the community,” McGuire said. “We have two full stages of female artists and I think every other stage has at least one or two female artists. I’ve seen a lot more black artists, because it’s no secret that EDM is not the most bizarre genre. “

The festival is not only accessible to artists, it also provides them. With general admission tickets going for 10 10 each, McGuire and his team have created an earnings model to ensure that a Davis – and the music rights holders they mix – are getting adequate compensation.

“There were two big obstacles for me when we set out to do this. One was to pay for the rights to the music, because I think it’s not unreasonable to make millions of dollars in streaming music, and the guy who made the streaming music you paid won’t be paid, “says McGuire.” So 30% of ticket profits go to the right holders. And move on to the technology that drives music.Then we split the remaining seven dollars: 60% goes to the artists and 40% goes to us.

While the Rave Family Block Fest is set to make history, it hasn’t been a smooth ride. The festival was originally called the Electric Blockchain and was supposed to be held on the weekend of June 25, but an internal rift and a huge Minecraft update scheduled for June 23 caused an unexpected suspension. However, the extra two weeks gave the Rev family the opportunity to add more artists and create many more stages, including a tribute to the Red Rocks, a space station, a stage inside its mouth and a giant alligator with a lazy-themed stage.

But it is only the beginning for the Rave family and the McGuire, who hope to continue the virtual festivities as often as possible to make music more accessible, even as a post-epidemic epidemic.

“Expensive festivals and club tickets are not just affordable, it’s the ability to reach your fans,” McGuire said. “I think people have forgotten that some people don’t like to be in the crowd or most music festivals are not wheelchair friendly, so many people There are those for whom regular music festivals can never be an option.

“I think you’ve once provided an income stream for artists – especially the very beautiful one where everyone is being paid for their music and what they’re doing,” he said. “I don’t expect that before I move away from anyone.”

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