There hasn’t been a CMJ Music Marathon since 2015 — the storied New York City event messily flamed out a year after it celebrated its 35th anniversary. But in April, a UK-based company called Amazing Radio announced that it had acquired the CMJ name and were planning on relaunching the festival in the fall. “We’re still planning to bring CMJ back to New York in October, come hell or coronavirus,” Amazing Radio chairman Bill Hein said in a statement at the time.
Well, coronavirus has not gone away — and we’re all in hell — and today Amazing Radio has announced that the first CMJ Music Marathon in five years will be an online-only virtual festival that, per a press release, will be “set up to emulate the iconic New York City festival and its spirit of new music discovery.” For a $30 one-time fee, it looks like bands can sign up to be eligible to perform at the virtual CMJ, which will go on for four days sometime later this summer. That fee would also theoretically make bands eligible for airplay on Amazing Radio’s digital radio shows. Submissions for that are now open.
The likelihood of any physical festival happening for the rest of 2020 is low. Just last week, both Coachella and Lollapalooza officially announced that they would be sitting out this year in hopes of returning in 2021.