The journey to musical success…
Over the last year, we’ve been covering the progress of Echo Factory, the specialist music school, based in Leicester’s Cultural Quarter. With even first year music degree students landing regular work, the results are promising.
We caught up with students Sim Dorset and Pete Cornell, to discuss their recent experiences…
Sim: I’ve just come back from a tour of Germany, singing for Adal, an artist who’s developing a good following there. This was the first time I’ve done the indie/80’s synth vibe, so it was good to be pushed out of my comfort zone.
Pete: I recently toured with singer songwriter Yakabo. I got a last-minute call and had to learn the material whilst on holiday! The first gig was on the day I was flying back; I landed at 12pm, had to be at the venue for 2pm and the gig was at 7pm. That night was the first time I played with the band. Fortunately, it went well!
What challenges did you face on tour?
Sim: Being with a small group of people all day, every day. You’ve got to avoid conflict and keep the peace! Sometimes we’d all start singing to cope with the stress or just sleep! What hits you, is that you have a lot of time to yourself.
Pete: You have to force yourself to be sociable, even when you don’t feel like it. You won’t get repeat work if you can’t get on with people.
How did you secure the work?
Sim: I’d been working at HQ Recording Studios in Leicester, and the owner put me forward. I had to audition over Skype.
So, networking is key?
Pete: Absolutely! I’d played with the guitarist before and he put me forward. Often, it’s a case of establishing a personality match, doing a good job and then people spread the word.
How has studying at Echo Factory helped?
Pete: They’ve really developed my musicianship, I’ve gone from being a drummer to a complete musician. It’s essential for the modern industry.
Sim: The tutors really know their stuff, my vocals have really improved and I understand the business a lot more.
What advice would you give to those seeking a career in music?
Pete: Don’t be arrogant, thinking, `I just want to play guitar`, open yourself to the fact that you’ve got to learn other things.
Sim: Gain good business knowledge and always be professional on and off stage.
Ready to get ahead in performance, production or business?
For advice on a career in music or to apply for a course, contact: [email protected] 0116 253 5657.