The inaugural Music Hack Day, an event for the international tech and digital music community, is to take place in London this weekend (July 11 to 12).

Bringing together 200 delegates, the two-day event is believed to be the first 'hack' type event dedicated exclusively to the music industry. In this context, hackers are defined as those who use their expertise to explore the possibilities of open-source software rather than those infiltrating and damaging secure systems.

BBC Music, SoundCloud,, RjDj, Songkick, Echonest, Gigulate and People's Music Store are among the companies taking part in the event. Representatives from several major labels as well as London-based independents the Beggars Group and Domino will also be in attendance, say the organizers.

"I think it's crucial for the future of the music industry to engage with this," Dave Haynes, U.K. manager of online audio sharing and distribution platform SoundCloud and organizer of Music Hack Day, tells

"We really want to engage the labels with what's possible," he says. "There's all these amazing innovations coming out and all these Web sites that are fantastically popular being built by developers. I really think that the majors especially should be spending time and energy and even making an investment into the people that are building the music apps of the future. It's time for the music industry to start working with Web technologies and innovation, not against it."

A rapidly growing phenomenon, hack days involve a number of invited attendees creating new Web applications in a 24-hour timeframe using digital companies' APIs (Application Programming Interface) or open source libraries. Similar events have previously taken place in Bangalore, São Paulo and London, while Yahoo was an early advocate in hosting internal and public hack days at a number of international locations, including its Sunnyvale, California campus.

Participants confirmed to attend Music Hack Day include leading international web developers, hackers and invited journalists. The event will be held at the London offices of British daily newspaper the Guardian, who recently launched their own open platform for developers.

"The Guardian is very interested in the idea of code as art. And music seems particularly ripe for new technical innovations," said Matt McAlister, head of Guardian Developer Network in a statement. "The Hack Day format is a great way to explore those possibilities with other developers and for people to try new things together."

Music Hack Day will see Songkick - a London-based digital concert database - launch their new API at the event. Soundcloud will also be unveiling some new specifically built API features, while BBC7 will be opening up their digital platform interface for the first time - an API that is traditionally open only to official partners of the BBC digital radio station. Workshops hosted by iPhone music creators RjDj and open-source hardware hackers are also scheduled to take place.

Ian Hogarth, founder of Songkick, said in a statement: "Music Hack Day is a great place to launch our new API. We're excited to see how our rich dataset on gigs and live music can be used in new and innovative ways".

Plans are currently being discussed for future music hack days to be held in the northern U.K. city of Manchester before rolling out the event to the States, Haynes tells Billboard, adding: "My hope is that this acts as a flagship event that others look at and realise the importance and carry on the good work."