The daily flagship show of Sean Combs' Revolt TV went live Monday in the network's Hollywood studios with interviews of Wiz Khalifah and Mack Wilds, discussions about Kendrick Lamar, Macklemore and the Grammys and a look at music around the Super Bowl.
"Revolt Live," which airs live at 2 p.m. PT/5 p.m. ET this week and will expand to several editions per day, is intended to be a SportsCenter for music and pop culture. This week will see the show bouncing back and forth between the studio in the Hollywood & Highland complex and the network's temporary headquarters in New York at 15th Street and Ninth Avenue. They expect to move to midtown in the spring.
Revolt executive VP of programming and production Val Boreland said the show hopes to book two or three performances per week. The network's Super Bowl week coverage will include parts of a Drake concert in front of 600 invited guests; footage from that will be aired in the week following the Broncos-Seahawks game.
The ultimate is to connect the audience -- millennials are the target -- on multiple screens. Live Twitter feeds were used throughout the show's launch as were Skype interviews with two young music fans and a report from the streets of Manhattan by a reporter chosen from 15,000 applications to be an on-air talent.
The Hollywood studio features a multi-platform set giving producers four locations from which to place the show's hosts, Sibley (aka Sib Vicious) and DJ Damage. Audience members are scattered throughout, most of them on a level above the main floor that features a large board with a constantly updated Twitter feed. Day one featured an analysis of the Grammy Awards from a panel of music website editors and Nia and Rena Lovelis of the band Cherri Bomb.
One area resembles a dressing room and is the only spot photographed without an audience in view.
"We want artists to come in and hang out," senior VP of programming and production Bruce Perlmutter said. "It's going to be a destination."
Sibley, a singer-actress, and DJ Damage are among 10 hosts that have been hired, most of them younger than 25. The belief is that the younger anchors of this type of a news program will be able to do interviews and offer commentary that plays well on YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and music fans' phones.
The casual atmosphere and youthfulness of everyone in the space gives it more the feel of a "TRL" for the 21st century than ESPN's flagship program. With the afternoon slot, it is clearly aimed for young people coming home from school or work.
To introduce "Revolt Live" to the rest of the country, they will embark on an 11-city road show that will end in Austin, Texas, during SXSW. Crews will be filming live in Philadelphia, Nashville, Chicago, Atlanta, San Francisco, Seattle and elsewhere.
Combs opened the studio with a party on Friday night with Tyrese, Vampire Weekend, ASAP Ferg, the Weeknd and Azealia Banks among the guests.