SEPTEMBER-GIRLS1First Music Contact, the national resource organization for musicians in Ireland is delighted to announce a major new relationship with HMV which will support and provide new opportunities for Irish bands.

Dublin five-piece September Girls – Caoimhe, Jessie, Lauren, Paula, Sarah – shine on FMC’s self-building music portal…

The first step in the new revolutionary relationship is the announcement of the Breakingtunes BreakingStage, located at HMV’s flagship stores in Donegall Arcade, Belfast and on Grafton Street, Dublin, which will feature weekly performances by some of the 8,000 bands featured on FMC’s self-building music portal,

Kicking off on May 16th BT acts will be able to perform in the Grafton Street store in Dublin at 1pm EVERY Friday and will have their releases stacked and stocked prominently in the store. Similarly in the Donegall Arcade store in Belfast the same will happen, with Northern Irish acts appearing on Breakingtunes at 1pm each Saturday.

The Oh Yeah Music Centre in Belfast will be offering local support and information to bands and to FMC as the project rolls out

Chris Keena, Head of Music at HMV Xtra-vision, exlains: “Supporting local music is an important focus for HMV and Xtra-vision, and our new ground-breaking relationship with FMC puts our money where our mouth is. “

HMV will also become the main sponsor of the hugely successful HWCH music festival and convention with more details to come when the festival makes its annual ‘call for bands’ in mid June.

“As a leading music retailer, we have a responsibility to source local product to bring as many local bands direct to market through the FMC channel. There is a burgeoning domestic music scene that has been largely ignored by the bigger labels. HMV and Xtra–vision will support all genres of local music at retail level across our national network of stores. We hope to roll out the Breaking Tunes stage into more shops during 2014.”

The third level of support from HMV for FMC activities is the annual FMC tour. The FMC tour showcases the best of local talent in six counties around Ireland towards the end of each year. HMV will feature a pop up shop on the tour, so all bands’ merchandise has a chance to contribute to more sales for the act and to increase the acts’ chance to enter the charts.

FMC’s Angela Dorgan is excited about how this relationship with HMV will help them continue to support Irish acts and bring them to the next level. “First Music Contact is all about supporting musicians at the key ‘gear change’ moments of development and this support is essential and so welcome. A relationship of this nature with HMV is a significant moment for any band and will serve to bring more and more focus on consumers buying Irish music.”