First-ever YouTube Music Awards today, Nov 3 6pm EST; Xeni's a judge!


The 2013 You Tube Music Awards logo.

Today, November 3 2013, is the first-ever YouTube Music Awards, and they'll be streamed live from Pier 36 in New York City at 6 p.m. EST. The live stream is embedded below in this blog post.

I was invited to nominate ten of the most innovative music videos of 2013. Two of my favorites made the final cut and are up for votes: "Endless Fantasy" by chiptune hackers Anamanaguchi, above [vote for it here] was one.

The other, "Ingenue" by the Thom Yorke-led global glitch-funk band Atoms for Peace, below.

VIDEO: Live event stream for YTMAs. About the event, from the organizers:

In the lead up, a celebration of music kicks off from Seoul and Moscow, to Rio and London, and culminating in a truly global music awards that is the first of its kind. The YTMAs will feature performances by Lady Gaga, Eminem, Arcade Fire, and more; and hosted by actor and musician Jason Schwartzman and comedian and musician Reggie Watts.

- Celebration of the YTMAs from Seoul: 5-6:30am EST
- Moscow: Noon-1pm EST
- Rio: 2-3pm EST
- London: 4-5pm EST
- YouTube Music Awards Preshow: 5-6pm EST
- YouTube Music Awards, Live from New York City: 6-7:30pm EST

YouTube Music Awards is all about you—the fans—and the artists and videos you love. The nominees were selected based purely on YouTube data from the last 12 months, and every time you watched, shared, liked, or subscribed, you helped determine the final list.


Chang W. Lee/The New York Times. Jason Schwartzman, left, a co-host of the YouTube Music Awards on Sunday, with Spike Jonze, the show’s creative director, during a rehearsal in Brooklyn.

Dave Itzkoff has a great piece in the New York Times about the YTMAs.

Spike Jonze is directing the whole thing, Boing Boing pal Tim Shey is the behind-the-scenes master who won't take any credit for how amazing this is, and Boing Boing's longtime collaborator Joe Sabia (who co-produces/co-hosts Boing Boing's in-flight Virgin America video channel with us) is working with them to bring some special CDZA magic to the event. It's going to be phenomenal.


Below, one of my nominations: the beautiful, simple, miminalist video from Atoms for Peace, "Ingenue," from their amazing 2013 release "Amok." I loved how simple and emotionally rich this piece was.

VIDEO: The 2-hour PIZZA DRONE director's cut, from Anamanaguchi. Ascent starts at 9:33.
Launched an hour north of New York City. Filmed with a GoPro, our album on loop playing through a tiny speaker mounted on the base of the weather balloon (to help track it in case it got stuck in a tree or something!!) GoPro died during the descent, but we still got the footage we needed for the video.

VIDEO: And below, one of the most popular videos from Joe Sabia's CDZA YouTube project. You'll see him, and the musicians in this video, during the YTMAs.

VIDEO: Finally, one of the music I nominated which didn't make the final cut (probably a little too risqué and seizure-inducing), Nicky Da B's "Go Loko," directed by Clayton Cubitt.

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