In one of the one of the most exciting and unique alliances in its six decade history, NME today announces the city of Austin, Texas - Live Music Capital of the World÷ - as the official headline sponsor of the NME Awards 2014, a first for any music platform.
Mike Williams, NME editor says: "No city in the world does more to support live music than Austin, Texas. They pack in a mindboggling amount of amazing festivals into a year, each of which seems to get better every time. Like everything else that the city does, they do it all their own way, embracing vibrancy, diversity and passion. There couldn't be a more perfect partner for the NME Awards 2014."
Home to many of the world's greatest music festivals - from Austin City Limits to SXSW - the city boasts over 2,000 recording artists and more than 250 thriving live music venues. Austin has become a mecca of vibrant musical diversity and talent.
Bob Lander, president & CEO of the Austin Convention and Visitors Bureau adds: "We are thrilled to be the title sponsor for the 2014 NME Awards. This partnership represents an incredible opportunity to expose our Live Music Capital of the World÷ brand and outstanding Austin talent to their fan base.
"Additionally, visitors from the UK represent our number one overseas market, and we know that the March launch of the nonstop British Airways flight from London Heathrow will really boost this number. Austin represents a long established and world renowned musical legacy and we're looking forward to globalising that image."
This unique partnership will run throughout the NME Awards season. It includes the regional NME Awards Tour, the London NME Awards Shows - which features the best in new and current music at the hottest venues in the capital - and the NME Awards night. Austin, Texas will also sponsor the prestigious Best International Band category at the NME Awards.
The NME Awards with Austin, Texas will take place on Wednesday 26 February at London's O2 Academy Brixton.
Graham Walters, COO, Academy Music Group, says: "We're delighted to once again be chosen as the host venue for the 2014 NME Awards. With our reputation and musical heritage, O2 Academy Brixton is the perfect choice to present one of the biggest events in the music industry Awards calendar."
Highlights from last year's event include live performances by Miles Kane and Paul Weller, Biffy Clyro and a show-stopping finale from 2013 Godlike Genius Johnny Marr who closed the night to a standing ovation performing a five-song set joined by Rolling Stones legend Ronnie Wood on guitar and vocals from The Vaccines frontman Justin Young.