W Hotels + Billboard Present: Next Up

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On Tuesday April 26, 2016, we received the April 30, 2016 issue of Billboard magazine. To our surprise, we stumbled upon W Hotels and Billboard magazine announcing the launch of “Next Up,” an emerging artist showcase series featuring new artists and new music. When we first saw this event advertised in Billboard magazine, we only knew that it was going to consist of 4 artists performing in 4 different cities at 4 different W Hotels.

Upon looking further into the event, we found out that the first official Next Up concert will be held at the W Hollywood in Los Angeles, CA on May 25, 2016. This launch will then be followed by events in Seattle, WA and Minneapolis, MN. The last stop is expected to be at the W South Beach in Miami, FL sometime in October of this year.

In September of 2014, W South Beach Hotel & Residences, in partnership with Vision Compere’s creative house, VISION, extended their W SpeakerBox concert series music program. It was also a live music program featuring intimate performances by celebrated and emerging artists from a variety of international genres.

We personally worked very closely with Vision Compere’s creative house. Our particular focus was to curate and identify emerging artists from various cities throughout W Hotel properties in Chicago, IL; Miami, FL; and San Francisco, CA.

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  • On October 2, 2014, Daryn Alexus was featured as an artist who was #NextUp and performed at W Hotels City Center property located in Chicago, IL.

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  • On October 30, 2014, Kyle Dion was featured as an artist who was #NextUp and performed at W Hotels South Beach property located in Miami, FL.

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  • On April 30, 2015, Lara Johnston was featured as an artist who was #NextUp and performed at W Hotels San Francisco property located in San Francisco, CA.

Overall, we love the fact that W Hotels and Billboard are teaming up to provide a platform for emerging artists to shine! This is exactly why we teamed up with VISION for their W SpeakerBox concert series 2 years ago.

We’re glad to see that Billboard expanded on a similar model of music programming with W Hotels. Lets continue pushing culture forward and allowing artists the opportunity to showcase their talents!


(Uh • Kway • Us) Aquaus Kelley is a forward-thinking Brand Strategist, Educator, and Music Publisher. As the Founder of A Lovers Ambition Lifestyle Group, he specializes in identifying talent and creating opportunities for brand development, exposure, and growth. Aquaus has worked with companies and organizations such as Cornerstone Agency, City Year Miami, Universal Music Group, and W Hotels. He is extremely passionate about helping companies adapt to culture and building value between brands and their consumers centered around love. His ultimate mission is to use his influence to project positivity across the globe and invest in the collective future of society through the arts, education, entertainment, and leadership.

Victoria Monét – Nightmares & Lullabies EP (Act 1)

I initially came across Victoria Monét a few weeks ago while I was checking out Eric Bellinger’s latest release, The Rebirth on Spotify. I heard her performance on ‘Liquid Courage‘ and I could immediately tell that she was pretty seasoned in her development. I’ve always been intrigued by female vocalists and she was definitely no exception.

After some additional research, I found out that she released her own project on soundcloud entitled, Nightmares & Lullabies (Act 1). With 5 tracks all totaling under 20 minutes (6 including the bonus ‘Trouble’), it’s almost a guarantee that you’ll be listening in to this more than once. My personal favorites include, ‘Made In China’, ‘Good Time x Trouble’, and ‘Backyard’.

I’m sure that you’ll enjoy what you hear…oh yeah, here’s a bonus performance that I came across on her youtube page also…pretty dope!