In 2014, The Elbow released the first volume of their local music compilation, entitled ‘Amplified’. They distributed 1,000 professionally packaged discs, and had over 1,600 downloads of the expanded playlist from their website.
Now they have partnered with EU Jacksonville to release the followup to that first record. Amplified Vol. II will be released Sept. 2 and includes over two and half hours of music in multiple disciplines from hardcore to hip hop and everything in between. The double-disc records will be available for free throughout the music venues and supporting businesses of Jacksonville. Sponsors include the W Studio 121, 1904 Music Hall, Hourglass Pub, Downtown Vision, Inc., and this year’s title sponsor EU Jacksonville.
Grant Nielsen, one of the masterminds behind The Elbow and Amplified, strives to create an impact that invokes emotion and change. “We got very ambitious. I hired Brian Barnard to paint all of the panels for the record. We designed something together. I laid it out, and he did the painting. It added some stress to the production, but I think that’s going to make up for itself when people see how different this record not only sounds but looks.”
Nielsen has been a long-time contributor to the local music scene, dating back before helping to bring The Elbow to life. “I had always dreamed of doing a local music compilation because I love all forms of music. Jacksonville has, as far as I can tell, the most talented local musicians of any market that I’ve ever played,” he says. “It’s just about how do you cram that all into a box? How do you package that? And Amplified was that with the Elbow being the analog of that. That’s how we packaged it. We just shoved it all into a box with a nice bow, and I think other music lovers kind of appreciated the fact that we were said ‘this is for everyone.’”
A generous donation from an anonymous party allowed Nielsen and company to develop Amplified Vol. II as a double-disc set. “We received 80 submissions this year, and we were utterly blown away by the quality of the entries,” Nielsen says. “Needless to say, it was a heart-wrenching task to separate out so many incredible and deserving groups. But in the end we feel we’ve selected an amazing cross-section of recording artists with the available space on the record.”
Artists featured on the upcoming release include TOMBOi, Dovetonsil, Grandpa’s Cough Medicine, Katie Grace Helow, Mere Woodard, Blaza Duval, JacksonVegas, The Little Books, Wunderlogik, Tambor, Insel, Canary in the Coalmine, Palm Trees & Power Lines, Inspection 12, Lady Daisy, Strangerwolf, Tom Bennett Band, Carl Swaygen, The Hereafter, Monarch Mtn, Whetherman, Billy & Bella, Brady Clampitt, Split Tone, ND 20/20, Mason, Land of la Bora, Rachel Warfield, Kudos the Kid, Crashmir, Le Orchid, Trap J ‘The Great 108’, Some Dude, DrazaH Backwards, Lowrcase g, In Whispers, JAHMEN, GFM, Royal Francis and Grammar Tree.
“Amplified is getting local music out there, and providing the opportunity for local musicians to maybe reach a larger demographic, giving their project more exposure,” says TOMBOi drummer Summer Wood. “I picked up the first compilation at a venue downtown and remember being attracted to the package design. I saw Paige Mcmullen’s band Universal Green on the back, recognized a few other bands, and discovered a lot of music that I hadn’t seen live. It was a good mix.”
A multi-venue release party is planned for Friday, Sept. 2 at 1904 Music Hall, the Hourglass Pub, and Spliff’s Beer Garden, showcasing artists featured on the album. In addition to the events themselves being free of charge all attendees will be able to pick up a copy of the double-disc record at no cost. Doors open at 9pm and music begins at 10pm.
The album will also be available for streaming and download at www.TheElbowJax.com/Amplified, along with details about the release party.