Fernando Perdomo Posits the Idea of a South by Southeast

Fernando Perdomo is a familiar name in South Florida music. Recently, New Times' Lee Zimmerman wrote about the musician's desire to alter the perception of music in South Florida. 

Perdomo has come up with an idea to do just that. He's working on creating a South by Southeast, an idea taken from the huge Austin music festival, South by Southwest, that took place just days ago. He's been to SXSW three times, but he believes we need one here. It's necessary, he believes, to expose all kinds of music to those in South Florida and the music we make here to industry people. 

"Miami's such a party town that sometimes bands don't get to play their music for the party crowd," he says. "The bands that are more successful are louder. They drown out the party crowd. Softer bands suffer." The industry, he believes, is currently exploring our area only for Latin, electronic, and hip-hop acts. He sees party as primary and music as secondary. Genres that are underrepresented are singer/songwriters, independent jazz, world music, and bands that are more pop, less indie. 

"I want to attract people that love live music," he says. He thinks venues down here cater to DJs and Latin funk. "I don't think there's much diversity. I want to showcase all of the great types of music being made in South Florida." He also wants to get our music out into the world. 

"I want this to be almost a nonprofit," taking the money raised to bring national acts and industry people to South Florida. "I want to bring people out to see local acts down here so that they can fall in love with them." His keyword here is hometown heroes. He wants to show the world the "untapped goldmine of music." 

The first year, he plans to have a smaller festival centered around a street with bars, like off of Broward Boulevard, with Revolution as the mainstage and other venues like the Poorhouse involved as well. 

He sees that many talented musicians are moving because they feel like their careers are stagnant here. This might just keep people here and build a thriving scene. He remembers Miami Rocks, a similar type festival in 1990 and '91 that gave rise to the Mavericks, Marilyn Manson, and Nuclear Valdez. 

"I'm the idea person. I'm just a musician who's been on the scene for more than 15 years, and I've seen so much talent get overlooked that should be huge right now, and I want that to change." In order for it to change, he thinks one musician from South Florida needs to be able to rise above the rest and point back to the scene that bred him. 

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