JJLA’s OUTLOUD brand is a music event series which creates safe physical and digital spaces for queer musicians, while cultivating a sense of community for LGBTQIA+ audiences. JJLA, a queer owned and operated experiential agency, is known for designing unexpected and innovative solutions for projects ranging from live concerts, music festivals and fan experiences all the way to corporate brand activations, non-profit galas and private events. Through its brand, OUTLOUD, JJLA’s goal is to give LGBTQIA+ voices a space to be heard and a sense of safety and togetherness for the entire queer community and its allies.
Utilizing its roots in the Pride world, JJLA looks to expand music programming year-round by the queer community for the queer community. Since OUTLOUD’s launch in 2020, the platform has provided accessible and diverse LGBTQ-focused programming through national events and globally accessible shows on both Facebook and Twitch (2020 & 2021 Shorty Impact Award-winners). OUTLOUD has expanded its reach year-over-year, while creating significant, accessible music events not only during PRIDE month but year-round through its hit digital series SPOTLIGHT, as well as flagship live events such as OUTLOUD Raising Voices Music Festival.
In 2022, OUTLOUD partnered with Twitch to produce sixteen live music broadcasts on the platform, a three-day music festival at an inaugural Pride event, as well as plans for several hybrid concerts in the Fall to celebrate National Coming Out Day and Trans Awareness Month. Through its partnership with Twitch, OUTLOUD was able to secure several promoted home-page spots throughout the year. This gave strong visibility to queer programming in the premium music content space on the gaming platform. In this growing content-driven market, there is an incredible need for a diversified environment that can appeal to all audiences and demographics.
JJLA’s flagship event, OUTLOUD Raising Voices Music Festival, was the tentpole event for The City of West Hollywood’s inaugural WEHO Pride in the beginning of June. The festival spanned over three days and was broadcast in real time to hundreds of thousands of viewers over Twitch who were also invited to engage with the event through chat functions. Talent at the event included notable names such as Years & Years, Marina, Jessie J, Cupcakke, Angelica Ross, and a plethora of rising artists in the community. OUTLOUD prides itself in not only booking large and iconic artists in the queer community, but creating space for rising LGBTQIA+ talent. The lineup for 2022 was diverse and spanned the entire rainbow spectrum. The in-person festival garnered over 30,000 attendees while the virtual viewership surpassed 750,000!
Throughout the remainder of the year, OUTLOUD focused its efforts on its SPOTLIGHT series, producing biweekly live music showcases which were hosted on its Twitch channel. Each episode featured brand-new, up-and-coming artists, was hosted by known queer personalities, and included interviews, interactive games, and some serious musical performances! The season kick-off event took place at the Abbey in West Hollywood then moved in-studio at the JJLA headquarters. The summer’s programming included 4 sponsored episodes by Amazon Prime and its new show Paper Girls. The show was a hit; over the past 11 episodes, SPOTLIGHT has garnered nearly 3 million live views on Twitch not to mention the flood of chat engagement and thousands of newfound fans.
2022 has been a fantastic year for OUTLOUD. Now in its third year of operation, the brand has proven that there is an appetite and an audience for queer premium music content on Twitch, a platform that’s mostly known for gamers. In a world where many LGBTQIA+ people must hide their identities, the internet is often the only place they can find community. Meanwhile, the in-person attendees at OUTLOUD’s events have also been given an opportunity to find common ground with others in their communities. Music is a powerful and uniting force.
OUTLOUD is continuing its upwards trajectory and growth expansion plan. Using 2022 as a jumping off point, the brand looks to expand live events nationwide with LGBTQIA+ programming year-round. Online viewership continues to increase week by week and audiences are exposed to new music. Queer musicians are able to promote new singles and projects, telling their unique stories and sharing their perspectives with the world.
The ability to reach audiences both in-person and on a broader digital platform will only help to elevate the voices of up-and-coming queer and transgender musicians who no longer have to feel that PRIDE festivals are their only outlet or platform to gain visibility. As emphasized in the show, PRIDE is not just one month of the year. PRIDE is something that the LGBTQIA+ community must feel each and every day, year round. Every day can be a celebration, but we must never forget the fight for equity and inclusivity for ALL.
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