Music Potential @ Stratford Circus Taster Session Review from IITS
Choice FM and Barclaycard’s Music Potential taster sessions were in full swing once again this week, following an amazing launch at the DV8 Training Music and Media Centre in Walthamstow. This time around the legendary Stratford Circus Performing Arts Centre hosted the event and boy was it a great turn out. The creative workshops were flowing with many ambitious, talented and motivated young people, enthused by an Industry In The Streets (IITS) team happy to share their wealth of expertise.
“Music Potential pushes the boundaries of education” – Jammin, grime emcee
Mike Anthony from the legendary Rampage Soundsystem was on hand to guide participants through the scripting and recording of their very own radio ad. During the fun-packed session they learned about voice pitching, balance and clarity. Next door, grime and dubstep producer Wonder oversaw the music production class, lending his adept knowledge to all young producers taking part and helping them to create their very own beats, Downstairs, funky house maestro DJ Funk Butcher and Joss Ryan were giving young people the know-how about DJing.
Experienced vocal coach ShezAr mentored a full house of eager students; with her unique approach to vocal coaching she had the whole group on their feet singing and chanting out, ‘we want some money, we want some money now!’ This led nicely onto the songwriting session where the class was split into three different groups and given a topic to write about over one of grime emceeJammin’s instrumentals.
As the workshops drew to a close, it wasn’t long before everybody returned to the main arena to show and prove. Rookie DJs kept the vibe alive as the participants took their seats. ShezAr wasted no time grabbing the mic to introduce her vocal collective. The barrage of bars and vocal hooks that followed raised the bar, as well as the eyebrows of an industry panel nodding approvingly to the sounds of real homegrown MP talent. The production crew kept the levels high with a selection of banging beats, followed by the radio team with their hi-octane ad, promoting the whole Music Potential movement.
‘Music Potential is important because there are not a lot of organisations about that offer the chance to young people to realise how they can go from wanting to work in the industry to how they can genuinely make it happen’ – Ben Scars, A&R Island Records
The last segment of Music Potential came courtesy of a brilliant Q&A session featuring the uber talented George The Poet, Ben Scars (A&R for Tinchy Stryder, Angel and Devlin) Natasha Mann (Senior Marketing Manager at Island Records) and ShezAr herself. Hosted by Fusion, he introduced the keynote speakers to a fervent audience and kicked off the industry panel discussion nicely with a few insightful questions, breaking the ice and leaving the floor open for the curious attendees to quiz the panel on their day-to-day encounters in the music industry.
A small networking session ended the day nicely. Everybody that attended the event left with a few more contacts then they came with, a few new mixtapes in hand and some had one of the excellent DV8 Training courses to look forward to.
Huge thank you to Choice FM, Barclaycard, DV8 Training, The Collective, Fusion and the whole Music Potential Collective. Bring on Raw Material, Brixton!
Words: Johnny Boy