What Does Red Bull’s Corporate Exit Means For Underground Music?

Yesterday, Red Bull revealed that their popular music platform, event series and radio station Red Bull Music Academy will be closing in October 2019. While there’s still some uncertainty about the exact form this will take – both businesses were in fact run by a separate company Yadastar, hidden behind Red Bull branding – their press release closes by saying “The world is full of great ideas. This was one”, giving a pretty clear nod towards the finality of the situation.

Founded in 1998, RBMA began life as a slick bootcamp for up-and-coming artists, initially focusing on electronic producers but later expanding to include singers, songwriters and musical creatives of all types. Hosted in a different city each year, it offered participants access to lectures and workshops with scene luminaries, collaborations with their peers, and support for building their careers.