San José, Costa Rica, since 1956
Music Beat

Music fest delights fans, helps artists make their mark

It has been a heady month for San José: first, it transformed itself into a design hotspot through the International Design Festival, and this week it became the musical headquarters of the region. The music festival Epicentro, taking place at the Casa del Cuño next to the Antigua Aduana in Barrio Aranjuez and at the local bar El Steinvorth offers a wide variety of emerging artists from Latin America.

This is the second edition of Epicentro, designed to create a new space in which Latin American musicians have the opportunity to get exposure and build connections with other artists.

“The SXSW (South by South West) festival in Austin, Texas serves as a means of inspiration for the creation of this festival,” organizer Carlos Soto told The Tico Times.

Epicentro offers conferences, music performances by both local and international musicians, and a music market. The conferences are mostly about the music industry and its potential in the country, but also provide artists with information about how to market their work. At Wednesday’s conference, Anahí Moyano, a representative from the Ministry of Culture, pointed out that the culture sector employs more than 30,000 people in Costa Rica, with the government seeking to provide increased support to boost this still further.

These conferences occur at 10 a.m. daily at the Casa del Cuño; from 1-8 p.m. the music market is open for people to buy the artists’ merchandise.

The artists participating in this second edition are Ave Negra, Balancer, Boreals, Caloncho, Clubz, Cocofunka, Dncflr, Do Not, El Extraño, El Mató Un Policía Motorizado, El Último Vecino, Entre Lobos, Florian Droids, Frikstailers, George Best, Los Cuchillos, Los Waldners, María y José, Marineros, Passiflora, Raido, Saturno Devorando, Seka, The Parrots, Timber of Trees, and Zópilot!

And the best may be yet to come: Epicentro has forged a new partnership with the Mexican music festival Nrmal, and the first Nrmal festival outside of Mexico will take place in Costa Rica at the end of 2015. The first Independent Label Market in Latin America will also be held in Costa Rica during that time, including live music, conferences, and showcases all over San José. Stay tuned!

The festival continues through the end of Saturday, March 28. For more information on the current festival, visit Epicentro’s website.

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