The idea for Live China Music came a good year after I had settled into Beijing — when nights of Wudaokou wankery and months-long getaways to Southeast Asia became too much of a nuisance. I had started seeking out anything music-related here in the capital, and brought my camera out each and every time. Filming for the sake of filming. A good friend of mine at the time, Rich Garrabrant, began ragging on me to put up the videos I had been taking. So we sat down one evening and developed the idea of starting a music blog — a way to “show” rather than “tell” what exactly the music scene here had to offer. We bought a domain name, shopped around for help, learned the ways of WordPress, and by the time we were ready, my buddy was shipped off to Guizhou to work on the railways, essentially leaving me with a site with zero content. So, it was either let the site wither away or get blogging. My cheap nature won out in the end, and I began posting.
Over the years, the site has evolved – besides posting videos and pictures of the countless shows I’ve stumbled into, we began covering everything from new releases to music videos (and even made a few ourselves). We started throwing up a weekly mixtape, conducting interviews, and venturing to other music scenes around China. Friends have lent a hand in every which way – from logo design and maintenance to filming. And now are steadily organizing and hosting gigs just about every month in Beijing.
By the time 2020 rolled around I’d thought we were through. But thanks to a timely pandemic,I was pulled back into it’s orbit. It’s been enlightening to see how the music scene has adapted to the situation – artists in lockdown live streaming from their bedrooms; old concerts being replayed to keep ears at ease; DJ sets unfolding across computer screens city to city, and venue/labels organizing virtual gigs in audience-less livehouses. Music here has truly been a lifeline not only to me but to countless others for getting through this – so I felt it was only appropriate to give back to the scene that gave me so much in the first place. So without further ado, LiveChinaMusic returns (with a few notable changes) -updating you with new music, music videos, mixtapes, special features, and hopefully soon enough, gigs to attend to. And please, if you’d like to join or help in any way, reach out to us.
So enjoy the facilities, explore some of the new and interesting sounds to emerge out of China and let’s give the music scene here its proper due!
– Chief Editor, William Griffith
P.S. – in early 2017, our site was hacked and destroyed by a bunch of renegade hooligans. While a lot of it was salvaged, we lost all the content (mainly pictures) and links. Feel free to check out the WebArchive version of the site to get a sense of LBM circa 2016 and we’ll continue backing up site till it’s in tip top shape again.