MEI (the Independent Labels Meeting) is the most important event dedicated to the new Italian indie music scene. It is a two-day-long series of concerts, musical and literary shows, meetings and exhibits, as well as a display area for the professional workers of the music industry.
The aim of the event is to support, promote and foster the growth and distribution of an indie and emerging music culture, in order to fight the process of depersonalisation which is currently going on in the music industry. We do it by offering an intense experience during the two days, which means: around three hundred showcases and concerts and hundreds of debates, meetings and book launches. Throughout the event, music is in the spotlight.
In seventeen years, MEI followed the music industry and its progressive transformation, supported independent artists and contributed to the promotion from their debut to their success. MEI collaborates with little and big Italian indie music labels that are daily looking for new opportunities and fosters new talents that take part in the event, each with its display area, live shows, records and downloads, in order to represent a universe in which the authentic Italian music grows and spreads.
MEI has been able to confirm its success by gaining credibility among public institutions and citizens all over the territory. Throughout the years it has also benefited the sponsorship of big commercial partners, both in terms of funds and merchandising, as it happens with important magazines and music websites. An excellent collaboration has also been strengthened with the local public institutions, such as the Comune di Faenza (district of Faenza), Provincia di Ravenna (the province of Ravenna), the Emilia Romagna region, the Chamber of Commerce and Anci (the National Associaton of Italian Districts), as far as some annual projects are concerned.
During 2011 and 2012 editions the show has further developed itself by creating the Supersound contest. MEI has also been able to reinvent itself thanks to the crossing of various needs, first of all those coming from the radical changes of the music market, which called for the renewal and transformation of our offer. This brought us back to the young generations and the new talents, in order to turn Faenza into the Italian milestone of the emerging and self-financed music in a market that is heading more and more towards niches and self-productions. We also gave the opportunity to little and average producers and musicians to take part in the event at a moderate cost.
This led to the choice of a new location, the Faenza historic centre, and to the reschedule of the event (which now takes place in the last weekend of September). The historic centre, its buildings and squares have become breeding ground for the new Italian emerging music scene, which fills the streets with people for two days long. Hundreds of festivals, contests and awards are involved, as well as promoters, concert organizers and many more networks working in the emerging live music industry.