Brussels, 17th December 2015

Eurosonic Noorderslag is the latest winner of independent label organisation IMPALA’s Outstanding Contribution Award to independent music. This annual prize recognises the exceptional efforts of an individual or organisation to promote and develop European independent music. Previous recipients include Armada Music and Armin van Buuren, Martin Mills (Beggars Group), Mario Pacheco and Charles Caldas (Merlin).

Over its nearly 30 years of existence, Eurosonic Noorderslag has a proven track record for helping to break new independent acts on the international live music scene. It is also a key exchange and networking platform for independent European music. The showcase festival and music conference are dedicated to European music (for 3 days) and Dutch music (for one day), taking place in the city of Groningen, in the North of the Netherlands.

IMPALA will hand over the award at the festival on Thursday 14 January when it will also be holding its first board meeting of 2016. Organised in collaboration with STOMP, the Dutch national independents association, IMPALA’s presence in Groningen is part of a series of events programmed to celebrate its fifteenth anniversary.

Eurosonic Noorderslag Creative Director Peter Smidt commented: “We are proud and honoured to receive this award from IMPALA and to be part of the great line-up of individuals and companies who have won this before. For the last 30 years, we have been working to create border-breaking success for European and Dutch artists and music. We thank IMPALA for recognising our efforts. Eurosonic Noorderslag will keep on working to create the best possible showcase festival, conference and market place for the enormous amount of high quality European repertoire.”

Helen Smith, Executive Chair of IMPALA added: “This award underlines the incredible work and achievements of Eurosonic Noorderslag in the past 30 years. The festival has been responsible for kickstarting the European careers of numerous independent artists, making it a key annual event for both artists and independent record labels.”

Kees van Weijen, Chairman of IMPALA and President of STOMP, the association of Dutch independent record labels commented: “The IMPALA Outstanding Contribution Award recognises Eurosonic Noorderslag’s unparalleled efforts promoting both Dutch and European independent music and showcasing so many different types of artists.”

About Eurosonic Noorderslag

Launched in 1986, Eurosonic Noorderslag is an annual four-day music conference and showcase festival taking place every January in Groningen, The Netherlands.  Attracting more than 30,000 visitors every year, the festival aims at strengthening the European pop sector and promote European pop music. It includes two festivals (Eurosonic and Noorderslag), a conference, a talent exchange program (ETEP – European Talent Exchange Programme) and the presentation of several music awards such as the EBBA – European Border Breakers Awards. Around 350 performances and 150 panels take place during Eurosonic Noorderslag.

About IMPALA and the Outstanding Contribution Award

IMPALA represents independent music companies across Europe. World leaders in terms of innovation and discovering new music and artists, independents produce more than 80% of all new releases. The Outstanding Contribution Award is one of two annual awards, which showcases European independent music and those who drive it. Previous winners include Armada Music/Armin van Buuren, Martin Mills (Beggars Group), Charles Caldas (Merlin) and Mario Pacheco. IMPALA also has a Mercury-style prize for the best independent album of the year, as well as a range of silver, gold and platinum sales awards. Artists recognised include Major Lazer, Christine and the Queens, Jamie xx, Caro Emerald, Trixie Whitley, Keny Arkana, Adele, Normhal, Skepta, And So I Watch You From Afar, Xavier Naidoo, Els Pets, Texas and Andreas Kummert.


STOMP – Stichting Onafhankelijke Muziek Producenten is the Dutch Association of Independent Record Labels. Launched in 2011 with Armada Music as one of its founding members, it represents all the key Indies labels based in the Netherlands and aims to collectively conduct negotiations in the best possible conditions with all partners in the music sector.

IMPALA – Independent Music Companies Association

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