Philly Music Fest Announces 2021 Line Up, Venues & Dates

Article Contributed by Mixtape Media | Published on Thursday, May 13, 2021

Philly Music Fest returns for its fifth annual music festival between October 6– 10, 2021. Uniquely known for exclusively featuring Philly bands performing at independent venues, PMF is a non-profit in the business of raising money for kids’ music education and giving opportunity to emerging musicians. “Our genre is Philly” -- Philly Music Fest features Jazz, Rock, Hip Hop, Punk, Bluegrass, Folk, Spoken Word and Americana artists - all of whom call The City of Brotherly Love: “Home.”
Venues hosting in-person, musical performances this year include: World Café Live, Johnny Brenda’s, Milkboy, REC Philly and Ardmore Music Hall. Over the past five years, PMF has featured 96 bands from Philly, and this year will host national touring artists such as The Menzingers, Alex G, Hop Along, Ivy Sole, Son Little, Spirit of the Beehive, Control Top, Queen of Jeans and Moor Mother, as well as emerging artists Moses Mosima, Barney Cortez, Irreversible Entanglements, Stella Ruze, Highnoon, Moor Jewelry, West Philadelphia Orchestra, Annonxl, Lunch and Kelsey Cork and The Swigs.
“Look, last year was tough, but we innovated and donated over $100,000 to musicians, venue staff and music education, through our virtual festival and micro-grant campaign,” says founder and curator Greg Seltzer. “We’re super proud of that, but getting back into venues and having our community safely gather together in-person - the excitement is incredible and we’ve worked hard to ensure that our 2021 lineup matches the enthusiasm.”
“The growth of PMF, from two shows and one venue to six shows and five venues, is a testament to the strength and passion of our local music community,” enthuses Greg. In addition to the six PMF shows, PMF will again feature two “bolt-on” events related to music.
PMF’s Tech Tour at Guru Technologies in Center City is scheduled for Thursday, October 7th between 4:00 and 7:00 PM. Tech Tour will feature panel discussions on startup, venture capital and tech topics, along with a diverse array of bands playing before, after and in-between the panel discussions. Tech Tour is free and open to the public, but space will be limited.
On Saturday, October 9th from 12:00 to 2:00 PM, PMF will again host Inside Hustle at World Cafe Live. Inside Hustle is a series of panel discussions featuring music industry professionals that conveys content regarding the business and industry of music in Philadelphia. Panel topics will include:  Should I Stay or Should I Go - exploring Philly as a home for musicians, Company in My Back - answering questions concerning forming an entity, tax and accounting and Only a Pawn in Their Game - how musicians can maximize and control their own destiny among an industry of corporate conglomerates.
Philly Music Fest’s impact has grown each year. In 2017, the non-profit donated $15,000 to music education programs. In 2018, the total increased to $25,000, then $40,000 in 2019 and $50,000 in 2020.  Programs that received donations include Rock to the Future, Girls Rock Philly, Settlement Music School, Musicopia, Live Connections, and Play on Philly.
PMF deployed over 330 micro-grants in 2020 to musicians and venue staff struggling as a result of COVID-19. The funds for the micro-grants were crowdsourced from the community and, importantly, through a donation by WXPN.