(DEF) JAM SESSION

Get An Inside Look of This Year's Def Jam Upfronts

Def Jam hosted this year's Def Jam Upfronts, showcasing the label's rising young talent, on Tuesday night (5/12) in NYC. In conjunction with Samsung's streaming platforms Milk Music and Milk Video, Team Bartels welcomed performances from Vince Staples, Elijah Blake, Lil Durk and Alessia Cara.

Snapchat personality Julz "Yes Julz" Goddard broadcast the event in real time on the social-networking platform via the Def Jam account—on a Samsung Galaxy phone, of course. Go here for a recap.

Some 8 million social impressions were said to be generated thanks to the various digital components of the event, with the hashtags #WeAreDefJam and #GalaxyLife circulating widely via Twitter and Instagram.

After Bartels' opening remarks, the performances began, interspersed with video detailing upcoming major releases (including sets from Alesso and Jeremih).


(L-R: Dion "No I.D." Wilson, Steve Bartels, Alessia Cara, Vince Staples, Faisel Durrani)

Pitchfork Rising Artist Staples is preparing to drop his debut album, Summertime ’06, on 6/30.

(L-R: Vince Staples, Dion "No I.D." Wilson)

Grammy Award-winning, 24-year-old singer songwriter Blake has penned hits for Usher, Rihanna and Rick Ross, including Usher’s #1 R&B smash, “Climax.” His debut album, Shadows and Diamonds (ARTium/Def Jam), launches 6/23.

Powered by his buzzing single, "Like Me" f/Jeremih, Lil Durk's debut full-length, Remember My Name, is set to street 6/2.

(L-R: Alessia Cara, Chris Atlas)

Toronto-native Alessia Cara, just burst onto the scene last month, as her breakout single “Here” rapidly gathered more than half a million plays and hit #1 on Spotify's Viral Chart.

(L-R: Lil Durk, Steve Bartels, Elijah Blake)

Bartels' fire mixtape still has a TBD release date, but he can clearly drop the illest beat, as seen below.


Def Jam EVP, ARTium chief and producer Dion "No ID" Wilson closed out the program.

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