International Festival of Music Producers and Sound Designers Soundedit is a unique event that has taken place in Łódź for nine years. It’s the only event entirely dedicated to one of the most creative professional groups – music producers. They may be standing in the shadow of the big stars but they are the ones responsible for the final shape of the recordings we listen to every day.
Soundedit is a place where professionals meet the amateurs. Polish artists have the opportunity to meet the world’s greatest music industry representatives. By exchanging experiences, they are able to raise the quality of their work. The most important music producers are awarded the statuette of “The Man with the Golden Ear”. Dreamt of by many, awarded to few.
So far, thirty one “Man with the Golden Ear” statuettes were handed out to outstanding Polish and foreign producers. The award has become recognizable, written about in foreign press and increasingly desirable in the industry.
With its unique formula, Soundedit festival is already well-known both in Poland and abroad. So far, our festival hosted – among others – such legendary producers as: Brian Eno, Bill Laswell, Youth (co-worker of Paul McCartney and bass player for Killing Joke), Velvet Underground co-founder John Cale, U2, Nine Inch Nails and Depeche Mode producer Flood, Polish Radio Experimental Studio co-founder Eugeniusz Rudnik, Tim Simenon, who produced Depeche Mode’s “Ultra”, and Józef B. Nowakowski, who has been working on some of the top albums released in Poland in the last 30 years.
Łódź was also visited by an Oscar and three times Grammy award winner Haydn Bendall, who worked with most of top pop and symphonic music artists. He gave special lectures in our city. In 2014, Soundedit was visited by Kraftwerk founder and now a university lecturer – Karl Bartos. In 2015, a huge number of people was drawn by Sir Bob Geldof and Deep Purple bass player Roger Glover. Brian Eno, who honoured the festival with his presence in 2016, was greeted with a standing ovation. His sound installation was presented to art lovers from all over the world. Festival events in 2016 took place not only at the Wytwórnia club, but also at the Łódź Philharmonic, Radio Łódź, Fabryka Sztuki and Manufaktura.
Soundedit is also about unique concerts. Laibach gave here their only performance of songs dedicated to Warsaw Insurrectionists. It was described as a truly unique event, seen by a sell-out crowd. In 2015 and 2016, we continued the formula of special concerts. Performances prepared especially for Soundedit by Wojciech Waglewski and the band Raz Dwa Trzy (both concerts played with special guests) are rated among their best.
Soundedit has also hosted first Polish club concerts by OMD, Public Image Limited, Gavin Friday, Divine Comedy, Daniel Lanois and Marc Almond.
The last two editions of the festival have also seen a great success of our special project created with Narodowe Centrum Kultury (National Centre for Culture) – The Anthology of Polish Electronic Music. The first edition was dedicated to the old guards of the genre, the second one to young artists. The summary of those events can be found in a special book devoted to Polish electronic artists, sponsored by the festival.
Soundedit continues to work with several media patrons. Polish Radio 3 and Radio Łódź have both annually included dozens of hours of live broadcast in their programme. Reports and interviews are shown by TV stations, and announcements of the upcoming edition of the festival are presented by the biggest news services.
The Festival has produced a documentary called “Władysław Komendarek – There Is Always Good in Space”, dedicated to this musician and “Man with the Golden Ear” laureate. Soundedit has also its own concert production – “Metropolis” project. Musicians playing their own soundtrack to this famous silent movie (Władysław Komendarek, Agnieszka Makówka, Igor Gwadera) are being invited to play in the best Polish concert halls, from the Grand Theatre to Witold Lutosławski’s Polish Radio Concert Studio.
The festival also hosted numerous popular workshops and meetings. Their educational value is one of the event’s most important elements. Soundedit includes ZAiKS and ZPAV (organizations dealing with copyright law in Poland) discussion panels, during which their representatives present the legal and business aspects of music industry.
Young people from all over Poland come for the entire weekend to “absorb” knowledge that they wouldn’t be able to get otherwise. It’s here that they get to know how the most famous Pink Floyd albums were made, what does preparing a U2 concert involve, or how it is to work in a studio with Kate Bush, Tricky or Ozzy Osbourne.
Since 2014, Soundedit has organized a special industry day, which includes all-day workshops for sound engineers working in theatres, philharmonics and operas.
Thanks to the presence of the most eminent international and domestic music producers, the latest editions of the Festival were met with a huge interest from both the media and the audience. Last year’s edition has exceeded the advertising equivalent before it even started and was mentioned in more than two thousand publications in local, national, commercial and foreign media – from TV and radio stations to press and social media.
The theme of Soundedit is: “I Am The Sound”. This is true for anyone who’ll join us in Łódź on the last weekend of October to get to know more about the work of music producers, listen to lectures, take part in workshops and discussions. I Am the Sound! I am the tone. I am the music. Welcome to Soundedit. Welcome to Łódź.
Photos: Mateusz Pulit