For many aspiring musicians the process from writing to releasing a song can be incredibly daunting. That step from the conception of a musical idea becoming a living, breathing song, floating through the collective consciousness can seem an insurmountable task at the best of times. However, the University of Newcastle (UON) has just announced a new education record label which will make the dream of releasing one’s own music a more tangible reality.
Baraya Records is the brainchild of Professor Paul Egglestone, the Head of School Creative Industries at UON. “Our vision for this new-concept label is to cultivate an environment where artists can build promising careers before transitioning to a commercial record label, or pursuing a career as a successful independent artist.” Prof. Egglestone said.
Through the program these aspiring artists are given exposure to real world industry figures in the form of mentors and guest lecturers. Heath Johns, BMG Managing Director and alumni of UON, volunteered his services after meeting with Prof. Egglestone. “We share a bond of creating pathways for talented people,” Heath said. “I’m trying to help provide that tangible connection between the University and the music industry.”
That tangible connection also came in the form of triple J House Party host and recording artist KLP. “I was trying to help engage contemporary guest lecturers,” said Heath. “And KLP has such an incredible work ethic and a real desire to give back.”
In January KLP spent a day at UON giving a song writing workshop, mentoring students and assisting them with their music. “Finishing songs can be so daunting” she said. “Sometimes it really helps to have an outsider come in and give a fresh perspective and that extra push to help get the song done.” KLP also hinted at further involvement with UON through her initiative Ricochet which combines many different aspects within the creative field.
When asked about Prof Egglestone and his team KLP enthusiastically remarked, “He’s a legend! They’re really good people trying to do really good things. They have the student’s and the University’s best interests at heart. It’s so fantastic when you meet educators like that.”
Heath too was quick to sing the praises of Prof. Egglestone’s program. “He’s the most inspiring tertiary figure I’ve ever encountered. He has a unique combination of a broad, big picture vision but is also very focused on the small steps which need to be taken early for ideas to become a reality.”