The countdown has begun for this year’s Notting Hill Carnival, which is moving entirely online for the first time in its 54-year history, and Spotify, an official partner for this year’s event, has unveiled its exciting line-up through its dedicated microsite.
With the help of Spotify, Notting Hill Carnival will be making the switch from the streets to your home, where you can join the party by accessing the dedicated site: www.spotify.com/carnival.
Gather your friends and family, dress the part and join the celebrations. You can expect playlist takeovers from big names; a chance to explore more than 40 of the official Notting Hill Carnival sound systems and on the road DJs – from Dub, Reggae, and Soca to Soulful House and everything in between. Also, look out for an exclusive portrait and film gallery from renowned photographer Ekua King; podcast episodes covering Carnival life, its rich history and a look forward; and ways to tune into live events throughout the weekend.
In an unprecedented year where social distancing remains paramount; organisers of the carnival are determined to not let COVID win.
Transporting Notting Hill Carnival straight into living rooms across the UK, Spotify has enlisted the support of some of the UK’s leading Black creators from the fields of music, film and entertainment to guide fans through some of its most popular playlists which will be dedicated to Notting Hill Carnival during the August Bank Holiday weekend.
Some headliners include:
- Lockdown success story No Signal (creators of the wildly popular NS10v10 format) take on Who We Be, the UK’s biggest Hip Hop, Afrobeat, Dancehall and R&B playlist;
- The legendary Marleys will help fans jam along to One Love;
- Little Mix’s Leigh-Anne Pinnock is compiling tunes for Throwback Thursday
- Koffee will help fans discover new reggae from legends to the new school on Irie;
- Jamaican dancehall artist and star of Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta, Spice takes over Dancehall Queen
Putting into words what many of us feel about carnival, singer, Leigh-Anne Pinnock said: “My favourite place in the world is Jamaica and I love Carnival because for two days out of the year you arrive in Notting Hill and your soul feels like it could be at home. For me, it’s important because it’s one of the biggest celebrations for Caribbean heritage and Black culture in the UK.”
“My favourite place in the world is Jamaica and I love Carnival because for two days out of the year you arrive in Notting Hill and your soul feels like it could be at home.”
Die-hard carnival lovers will relish the chance to explore more than 40 of the official Notting Hill Carnival sound systems and on the road DJs, via Spotify. Check in with King Tubby’s, Carnival’s oldest sound; Rampage Sound, one of Carnival’s most coveted spots, the prince of UK soca Martin Jay, and even Carnival’s only all-female sound system, Seduction City Sound.
Speaking about the importance of carrying on the carnival legacy, Lady Banton of Seduction City Sound, said: “Last year I celebrated 25 years of being the only female sound system in Carnival. J’ouvert is very much built on the symbolism of slavery – so it was very poignant this year because there are always challenges for us. The struggles we’ve had for hundreds of years, we still have those challenges today. I’m a woman and a Black woman, and I’m proud to be a Black woman. I’m also a child of the Windrush generation so we never forget. I thought what a relief I am here again.”
“Last year I celebrated 25 years of being the only female sound system in Carnival. J’ouvert is very much built on the symbolism of slavery – so it was very poignant this year because there are always challenges for us.”
Matthew Phillip, Executive Director of Notting Hill Carnival Ltd., said: “As an organisation, we want to connect with and educate a wider and younger demographic to learn about the culture and history of Notting Hill Carnival. Spotify’s engagement with the artists and the playlists that they have created is the perfect platform for so many to start that journey of learning and appreciating what an incredibly important event Notting Hill Carnival is. Carnival is loved by so many young people, and that love will be even greater when they understand its legacy and cultural significance.”
The Spotify site will also host podcast episodes covering everything from Notting Hill Carnival’s rich history to current issues facing the Black community.
Notting Hill Carnival takes place during the August Bank Holiday – 29 August to 31 August 2020.
Visit Notting Hill Carnival website: www.NHCarnival.org