Conventions & Awards

10 Int’l Music Industry Players I Met In Jerusalem [KOSHA DILLZ]

Rapper and schmoozer extraordinaire Kosha Dillz is now splitting his time between Israel and LA, and his international perspective is opening the kind of doors that every indie artist’s dreams of.

By international indie rapper Kosha Dillz

As I am a strong advocate of massive music conferences, I realized that a lot of the world is covered outside of things like SXSW. Behold the Jerusalem Showcase conference, where a gang of festival bookers from every nook and cranny of the world come to see the finest talent in the holiest space in the world. 

Since I am a master of the schmooze, I took my schmoozing capabilities to the yellow submarine and met some amazing people I met throughout the conference after watching a bunch of crazy shows. (update, I just recorded a song about Schmoozing) . 

I am excited to link you to a gang of new people and things you may be excited to check out. Of course, it was an amazing experience, as we all met In Jerusalem via music…and, not religion!

1. GigMit –  Imagine if Sonic Bids had an actual distant and cooler cousin that was based in Berlin. Over here, You can sign up and land yourself on festivals all over the European Market. Behold Gigmit! I think this is growing daily, so it is an actual good time to jump on and there aren’t a lot of rappers or American musicians in there. How do I know it’s real? I met the marketing star Anna and just signed up and applied to a bunch of festivals from Russia to Liverpool sound City and spent 19 euro. It was like online gambling but much better.

2. Trans Festival in France – If you speak English you may think this is different but I know this guy left France to see all the talents to book in Israel right before his festival is happening . He has booked the amazing Alyona Alyona of Ukraine amongst others including Israeli Iranian World artist Liraz.

3. Ashish Manchanda of  BoonCastle Media; Mumbai, India – One exciting thing to do in the world is put the Indian music industry in Jerusalem.  Not only are there 1 billion people in India, but Bollywood could arguably be the next biggest films besides Hollywood. From record label to participating in over 150 Bollywood films to exporting Indian talent to MUSExpo in Los Angeles, they might be the people you hit up on your next journey to India to create anything.

4. Bankito Festival , Aurora in Budapest Hungary

One of the most delightful people I met was Adam Schonberg from Budapest. I had originally connected with him in Jerusalem years earlier, and I also ended up playing his Aurora Club, which most recently stormed by Nazis. His club Aurora is leftist jewish establishment, full of vegan food, decor, and Hungarian soccer games. Bankito Festival is like a small Sziget festival. But still boasts concerts with Saul Williams and Bob Moses.

5. Iceland Airwaves and Sena.IS

Not only is Iceland the coolest place in the world (that blue lagoon looks amazing) , but probably the most epic place do business in music and get seen by media professionals. Hosting everyone from a gang of Iceland talents to Mac Demarco and Madame Gandhi. It happens in early November so make it an effort to apply when it comes out. Other than that…it is really hard to say the R in their names and the booker is not a Viking in a helmet. They do this festival and are probably the other people to contact to do a show in Reykjavik. The only other guy I saw there on Instagram was Mod Sun.

6. Blue Bird Festival in Austria

I have really nothing to do with being a singer / songwriter but I felt this guy Klause Totler was so awesome as he was there with his wife enjoying the amazing conference. He runs a sweet festival in Austria as part of the Vienna Songwriting Association. If you are coming to Vienna this might be the people to contact 🙂

7. Eden Dersso – Not only was she the biggest act that showed up at the Teder. But she is part of a massive female movement where women are becoming stars in their own language and becoming internationally bound.  Ukraine has Alyona Alyona. There is Eden Derso from Israel. Lizzo in America. She is technically sound artist with Shigola Records to back her up, so they surely have the team to make the dreams. (Come true). I’m excited to see how many festivals she’ll book from the showcase.

8.  Ethelbaby Super Star, Bemet, and Sighdafekt

Within the Teder, there is a massive group of smaller venues in this mini-mall. I walk into a room and see Ethel who is a small compilation of bright lights and clothing mixed with MIA style raps but in here and English. Sighdafekt raps with her on the set and adds the English and back up vocals. There is a sort of growing scene of English rap in Israel and it expands the idea of trap and more, with Houston and Atlanta influence. (See him in Lyrical lemonade)  I went with the guy from Iceland and China to see the show. The Chinese festivals booker says “The kids in China Love Hip Hop.  Right after Sighdafekt gets off state, BEMET comes on with a massive drummer and keytar thrash fest,  getting 250 people jumping.  My friend shows me a picture of Bemet in front of 5000 people in India. BEMET is big in India, but I haven’t jumped like this in a while. Beset is the truth but also “really?” In Hebrew.   The best part of this is that I can totally seeing these bands fall in SXSW to small crowds, but Israel really appreciates live music and shows up for showcases. The beauty here is that it is a well-curated smaller showcase with 1000 people and 30 industry people seeing yo versus 10,000 industry people out to dinner and 40 local people seeing you amongst 40,000 but no one really knows what anyone does. Kudos Jerusalem!

9. Noga Erez x Lucille Crew  – English Lyrics In Israel

Hi Noga and Hi Lucille Crew  Not only did I get the honor of playing with her in Austin Texas SXSW for a Flood Magazine party (and supporting Lucille Crew on the Israel Tour), but she is playing festivals all over Europe and on City Slang Label. Something has changed though, as she is incorporating more rap on her jams and more importantly she had everyone in the crowd singing her words. Lucille Crew is a bit bigger with a 6 Israel band members and Snowfflake black flying in from Brooklyn. With a stage show that is overwhelmingly amazing , I expect everyone to book them as well. Not only does Lucille Crew have the demand to play Sziget Festival last summer with Macklemore, but they also throw Getting Baked Festival in Tel Aviv and book headliners of their own.  This year they will bring the festival to the east coast.

10. Terminal Music and Art Festival , Serbia

I am a huge advocate for massive events, but I also want to big up the smaller markets. I hung out with the Terminal Music team all week, and learned about Serbia. With a super low monthly income rate for most, we can only imagine the thirst for quality acts to come in.  Check them out and consider going to the places many people don’t go. As a musician myself, I dream of having a “big in Japan” shirt, but nowadays I also want to make “Big Jewish Rapper in Serbia” shirt too.

Kosha Dillz is an awesome rapper living in Tel Aviv but originally from New Jersey and subletting his LA apartment. He has a new music video for Schmoozin‘ produced by hit maker KoOoL Kojak, and also has a podcast called Hustle Beach. He plays January 20 at Bowery Electric in NYC and wants to you cheer him on.  His merch is sick too Hit him up about his OY VEY SXSW showcase at rapperfriends(at)gmail dot com. 

Share on:


  1. Jerusalem has a music showcase …that is crazy. Gonna try out gigmit to get a gig too. This kosha Dillz guy is dope.

Comments are closed.