Warner Music Group (WMG) is launching a three-day virtual music festival called PlayOn Fest.
The event is being hosted in support of the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for the World Health Organization (WHO), which is powered by the UN Foundation.
PlayOn Fest will see WMG labels open up their vaults to play “rare” footage from the likes of Bruno Mars, Coldplay, Green Day, Cardi B, Ed Sheeran, Janelle Monáe, Twenty One Pilots, Lil Uzi Vert, David Guetta, and more, as well as a look back at Nipsey Hussle’s Victory Lap album release show.
As part of a three-day live streaming event, PlayOn Fest promises to bring “energy and high production values from world class stages” including Coachella, Sydney Opera House, Lollapalooza, Apollo Theater, Bonnaroo, The O2 Arena, Primavera Sound, Red Rocks Amphitheater, Rock In Rio, Global Citizen Festival, and more.
WMG has also launched a pre-sale of exclusive PlayOn Fest merch with all proceeds going to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for WHO.
In addition, fans will be encouraged to click-to-donate throughout the three-day-event. Donations will support WHO’s work to track and understand the spread of the virus; to ensure patients get the care they need and frontline workers get essential supplies and information; and to accelerate development of a vaccine and treatments for all who need them.
The news comes in the same month that Max Lousada, global CEO for Recorded Music at Warner Music Group, told Rolling Stone: “Music is not a cure, but it is a comfort. It’s a source of hope, strength and connection. During these troubling times, we’re focused on keeping our people and our artists safe, sustaining their livelihoods, and supporting the music ecosystem.”
That was in reference to Warner Records continuing to release big albums (Dua Lipa, PARTYNEXTDOOR) during the COVID-19 lockdown, but could just as easily be applied to PlayOn Fest – which will feature ‘sets’ from artists including:
- Nipsey Hussle (Victory Lap album release show from the Hollywood Palladium).
- Coldplay (taken from the band’s São Paulo, Brazil show during their A Head Full Of Dreams Tour in 2017).
- Bruno Mars (24K Magic Live at the Apollo theater in 2017).
- Panic! At The Disco (O2 Arena in London in 2019).
- Ed Sheeran (Austin City Limits, in 2017).
- KORN (filmed inside of a living art installation celebrating the release of their 2019 album The Nothing).
Additional performances to be featured during PlayOn Fest include:
- Anitta (2019 Rock In Rio Festival set at Parque Olímpico in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil).
- Cardi B (2018 Global Citizen show from New York’s Central Park).
- David Guetta (Tomorrowland 2017).
- Janelle Monáe (2019 Coachella mainstage performance).
- Twenty One Pilots (closing headline set at Lollapalooza Brazil in 2019).
- The Flaming Lips (Sydney Opera House in 2019).
- Green Day’s set from MTV’s World Stage Seville during the 2019 EMAs.
- Lil Uzi Vert (2018 Lollapalooza debut).
- Wiz Khalifa (2019 Coachella set).
- CHANMINA (March 2019 concert at Tokyo’s Zepp music hall).
The full line-up will be available, as well as more information, at playonfest.com.
“Since I can’t get on stage right now, I’m throwing it back to my party at the Global Citizen Festival to hopefully send some love and light to y’all.”
Atlantic Records-signed Cardi B said: “Don’t play yourself! Tune into PlayOn Fest April 24-26 and help us raise money for the World Health Organization to boost COVID-19 relief funds.
“Thank you to all of the healthcare workers who are dedicating their services and helping to save lives! Since I can’t get on stage right now, I’m throwing it back to my party at the Global Citizen Festival to hopefully send some love and light to y’all. Stay safe everyone!”
“The PlayOn Fest is a great way to come together, enjoy good music and company, and support the World Health Organization’s most urgent global work to combat COVID-19.”
Elizabeth Cousens, UN Foundation
Elizabeth Cousens, President & CEO of the UN Foundation, said: “During this pandemic, we are all searching for ways to stay connected.
“The PlayOn Fest is a great way to come together, enjoy good music and company, and support the World Health Organization’s most urgent global work to combat COVID-19.”Music Business Worldwide