Communion (music)

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Communion is an artist-led organisation that combines elements of live promotion, publishing, records and production. The organisation is intended as a hub for songwriters and musicians to develop and flourish within the music industry. Formed in London in 2006, the organisation was founded by Ben Lovett of Mumford & Sons, former Cherbourg bassist Kevin Jones and producer Ian Grimble.[1]

Communion works with a diverse range of artists, and its label released records by Marcus Foster, Matthew and the Atlas, Pete Roe, Michael Kiwanuka, Ben Howard, Matt Corby, Nathaniel Rateliff and Daughter, among others, along with three of its own recorded compilation albums.[2]

Communion launched a United States (US) division in 2011,[3][4] and an Australian division in 2012. [5]

History[edit]

Communion began in 2006 as collaboration between friends who started a monthly Club Night at West London's Notting Hill Arts Club. The event aimed to provide support and exposure for local emerging artists. Since then, the organisation has expanded to host Club Nights to venues in Brighton, Bristol, Leeds, Oxford, Manchester, Dublin, Belfast, Glasgow, Truro and internationally to New York City, San Francisco and Nashville. They have featured a range of artists including Mumford and Sons, Jay Jay Pistolet (of The Vaccines), Anna Calvi, Laura Marling, Peggy Sue and Noah and the Whale.

The organisation expanded its scope, incorporating a record label and hosting annual festivals such as Bushstock, a summer festival in London's Shepherds Bush, and Communion in the Redwoods, a three day celebration in Big Sur, California, US. Communion also ran smaller stages at major festivals such as The Great Escape, Camden Crawl, SXSW, Bestival and CMJ.

Communion's presence in the US was established with the organisation of two tours that featured The David Mayfield Parade, Lauren Shera and Matthew & The Atlas. In spring 2012, the 'Austin to Boston' tour occurred following the SXSW Festival. Travelling from Austin, Texas to Boston, Massachusetts in camping vans, the tour featured Ben Howard, The Staves, Bear's Den, Gill Landry (at some shows) and Nathaniel Rateliff.

Communion Records[edit]

An unrelated Communion Records was in operation in the late 90s in Waco, TX. Most notably, was the 1997/1998 release of "A Punk Rock Coummune" which was a 24 track compilation CD of "christian" punk bands from around the United States. Releases of the Hypocritz, the Aloha Fridays, and the American Culture eXperiments were originally produced under this label.

In 2010, Communion Records was founded. The label has released compilation records as well as EPs and full length albums, often produced by founders Ian, Kevin and Ben themselves. Artists include Marcus Foster, Matthew and the Atlas, Pete Roe, Michael Kiwanuka, Ben Howard, Matt Corby, Nathaniel Rateliff and Daughter.[2]

Communion Records also has a partnership with Island Records, with whom it co-released records by Gotye, Ben Howard, Deap Vally and Half Moon Run to date.

In 2013 Communion Records announced its partnerships with Mumford & Sons "Gentlemen Of The Road" imprint and Island Records to release the third, selftitled LP by Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros

Communion Compilations
Compilation One
The label’s debut compilation record was released in April 2010 on limited edition gatefold vinyl, and features previously unreleased recordings by Mumford and Sons, Johnny Flynn, Alessi’s Ark, Benjamin Francis Leftwich, JJ Pistolet (now of The Vaccines), and others.[6]
Compilation Two: The Flowerpot Sessions
The Flowerpot Sessions,[7] released 30 May 2011, was the product of a week long collaboration between 23 artists. The compilation was recorded at The Flowerpot, a North London pub (now closed). Communion took over the venue entirely for one week and encouraged artists to collaborate on each other's recordings and to write together. Artists included Angus and Julia Stone, Damien Rice, Kyla La Grange, Mt. Desolation, Lissie, Marcus Foster, and Matthew and the Atlas.
Compilation Three: New Faces
Communion's third compilation – “New Faces” is a cherry-picked selection of young artists that Communion want the world to celebrate next, and also acts as a timely reminder of the talent that the collective have nurtured over the past twelve months or more.

Communion Presents[edit]

Operating as a London promoter in intimate churches, well known venues on the circuit and 1000+ cap venues such as KOKO and Brixton Academy, Communion Presents has brought sold out shows for Ben Howard, Matt Corby and The Staves to London. Communion Presents has also promoted shows for both UK and worldwide new talent including Joe Banfi, Nick Mulvey, Chet Faker and Moddi.

Communion US[edit]

Both Communion Presents and Communion Records have US operations, based out of New York. Communion Presents US hosts monthly clubnights in New York City and Nashville, with more coming in Autumn 2013. As of June 2013, Communion Records US has released records by Ben Howard, Michael Kiwanuka, Deap Vally and Willy Mason.

Releases[edit]

2010

Matthew and the Atlas - "To The North" (March 2010)
Communion Compilation (April 2010)
Pete Roe - The Merry Go Round EP (June 2010)
Philadelphia Grand Jury - "Going to the Casino" single (July 2010)
Matthew and the Atlas - Kingdom Of Your Own EP (November 2010)

2011

Three Blind Wolves - Sound of the Storm EP (February 2011)
The Flowerpot Sessions - Communion Compilation (May 2011) [8]
Nathaniel Rateliff - The Communion / Daytrotter Barnstormer Live EP (April 2011)
Treetop Flyers - "Things Will Change" Single (May 2011)
Ben Howard - Old Pine EP (May 2011) [9]
To Kill a King - "Fictional State" Single (May 2011) [10]
Michael Kiwanuka - Tell Me a Tale, The Isle of Wight Sessions EP (June 2011) [11]
Treetop Flyers - "It's About Time" (September 2011) [12]
Michael Kiwanuka - I'm Getting Ready EP (September 2011) [13]
Daughter - The Wild Youth EP (October 2011)
Gotye - "Easy Way Out" Single (December 2011)

2012

Gabriel and the Hounds - Kiss Full of Teeth (February 2012)
Michael Kiwanuka - "I'm Getting Ready" Single (March 2012)
New Faces - Communion Compilation (March 2012)
Foy Vance - Melrose EP (August 2012)
Pale Seas - "Bodies" / "My Own Mind" Single (September 2012)
Joe Banfi - Iron EP (September 2012)
Michael Kiwanuka - "Bones" Single (September 2012)

2013

Joe Banfi - Nomads (January 2013)
Bear's Den - Agape (March 2013)
Half Moon Run - Full Circle (Single) (March 2013)

Story Books - Too Much A Hunter (April 2013)

Catfish and the Bottlemen - Homesick (Single) (June 2013)

Joe Banfi - Spotify Sessions Curated By Brian Eno

Story Books - Communion and XFM present New Faces, Volume 1, Story Books Live at XFM (July 2013)

Caveman - In The City (Single) (August 2013)

Caveman - Caveman (August 2013)

Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros - Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros (August 2013)

Catfish and the Bottlemen - Rango (Single) (September 2013)

The Trouble With Templeton - Six Months In A Cast (Single) (September 2013)


Club Nights[edit]

Communion Club Nights are hosted regularly at venues in Brighton, Leeds, Newcastle, Glasgow and internationally in Brooklyn New York, Nashville and Melbourne. The format includes 5-6 live bands plus DJ sets.
The original London Club Night is still hosted the first Sunday of each month at the Notting Hill Arts Club.[14]

Bushstock[edit]

Bushstock is an annual spring music festival hosted by Communion. It is held in London's Shepherds Bush and features multiple artists across multiple venues.[15]
The 2011 event line up included 4 venues and the following artists; Guillemots, Peggy Sue, Fink, Foy Vance, Cloud Control, Sarah Blasko, Goldheart Assembly, Treetop Flyers, Lucy Rose, Kill It Kid, Marques Toliver, Flashguns, Crowns, The Staves, Tom Williams and the Boat, Three Blind Wolves, Daughter, King Charles, To Kill a King, Dark Moon, The Welcome Committee, The Riff Raff, Michael Kiwanuka, Laki Mera, Jarle Bernhoft, Islander, Greenwich Tea Party, Cattle and Cane, Louise and the Pins + DJ Sets by: Propaganda, Chess Club and TV Nights.[16]
The 2012 event was held June 2, 2012 at four venues in Shepherds Bush including St. Stephen's Church, Shepherds Bar, The Defectors Weld, and Ginglik. The lineup consisted of: Alessi's Ark, Amber States, Bastille, Bear's Den, Burning Beard, Dan Croll, Daughter, David McCaffrey, Dog is Dead, Ellen and the Escapades, Fink, Fionn Regan, Gabriel and the Hounds, Harry Oakwood, Jamie N Commons, Joe Banfi, JP Cooper, Juan Zelada, Lanterns on the Lake, Let's Buy Happiness, Mahalia, Marcus Foster, Matthew and the Atlas, Mystery Jets, Nick Mulvey, Oh Burgundy, Pale Seas, Paul Thomas Saunders, Rae Morris, Raghu Dixit, Sarah Jarosz, Silent Devices.[17]

Communion in the Redwoods[edit]

Communion hosts Communion in the Redwoods, an annual three day celebration in Big Sur, California.
The 2011 event was held October 21-23 and featured Jackie Greene, The Secret Sisters, John Vanderslice, Forrest Day, Matthew & the Atlas, The David Mayfield Parade, Lauren Shera, Nathaniel Ratleif, Everest, Infantree, and Themes.[18]
Communion in the Redwoods returned to Fernwood Resort on October 26-28, 2012. Featuring The Devil Makes Three, Here We Go Magic, Tamaryn, Grahame Lesh, Sea of Bees, Blind Pilot, Jessie Skyes, The Apache Relay, Robert Ellies, Jonny Fritz, The Brothers Comatose, Waters, Aaron Embry, The Dunwells, Charlie Peacock, Naia Kete, American Jubilee.
The 2012 event was held in collaboration with (((folkYEAH!))) on October 26-28 in Fernwood, Big Sur, California. It featured The Devil Makes Three, Blind Pilot, Here We Go Magic, Tamaryn, Rober Ellis, Jonny ‘Corndawg’ Fritz, Sea of Bees, The Apache Relay, Aaron Embry, The Dunwells and lots more.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Stubbs, Dan. "Communion." Mojo Music Magazine. July 2011. 74-81.
  2. ^ a b "Ben Lovett & Kev Jones: Now That’s What I Call Communion | Interviews | DIY". Thisisfakediy.co.uk. 2011-05-26. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  3. ^ "Sacks & Co. /// COMMUNION". Sacksco.com. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  4. ^ "Communion in Williamsburg created by Ben Lovett to keep bands from being exploited - NY Daily News". Articles.nydailynews.com. 2011-01-07. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  5. ^ "Communion Melbourne Launch on Tone Deaf - The Home Of Australian Music". Tonedeaf.com.au. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  6. ^ "Mumford & Sons' clubnight Communion to release compilation album | News". Nme.Com. 2010-01-22. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  7. ^ "Music - Review of Various Artists - The Flowerpot Sessions". BBC. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  8. ^ Mugan, Chris (2011-04-29). "Communion spread the word with The Flowerpot Sessions - Features - Music". The Independent. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  9. ^ "Ben Howard; Old Pine EP, April UK". AAAmusic.co.uk. 2011-03-30. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  10. ^ Dave Sugden. "The debut single from To Kill A King to be released in May". Leedsmusicscene.net. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  11. ^ "Michael Kiwanuka - Tell Me A Tale by Stayloose on SoundCloud - Hear the world’s sounds". Soundcloud.com. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  12. ^ [1][dead link]
  13. ^ "Michael Kiwanuka - I'm Getting Ready | Videos | Clash Magazine". Clashmusic.com. 2011-09-18. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  14. ^ "It’s open source music: In conversation with Communion Records". The Line Of Best Fit. 2011-06-14. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  15. ^ "Communion Records Launch Bushstock Festival". Addict Music. 2011-02-04. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  16. ^ Wolstenholme, Gary (2011-06-10). "In Photos: Bushstock Festival , London / In Depth // Drowned In Sound". Drownedinsound.com. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 
  17. ^ [2][dead link]
  18. ^ "Mumford & Sons Keyboardist's Promotion Team Coming to U.S. :: Music :: News :: Paste". Pastemagazine.com. 2011-09-07. Retrieved 2013-03-03. 

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