On Monday 21st June I was invited along with some of my students to be interviewed for a pre-record by Paul Franks of BBC WM for his Tuesday drive time show. The basis of the interview was about a group of my current 2nd year students who aim to revive the audio cassette in the form of a release on their record label Brave or Invincible Records. The students Nick Moreton, Callum Joynes, Ryan Smith, and Chris Williams set up BOI Records last year based on some of the experiences and knowledge they gained in their 1st year Music Industries modules. They have successfully managed to combine their ongoing degree studies alongside running a business. I am really proud of their achievements and as they have gone ahead and put into practice one of the key principles I try to instil into my lectures-being actively involved in the music business and creating an exit strategy for when they complete their degree as well as demonstrating the possibilities of entrepreneurship. I as their lecturer do what ever I can to support their initiative in the way of mentoring, advice etc. With good time management skills and a commitment to work hard they have shown that it is possible to engage with the profession whilst studying. Hopefully more students will see this as a green light to do the same or similar.
What is particularly interesting about them re-inventing the audio cassette is that they have combined retro with digital and found an innovative and creative way to release music and get some media attention hence the interview and press coverage. I won’t give too much away as the interview is available to listen too. Strangely enough today (Thursday 24th June) there is an article in the Guardian G2 by Alex Petridis about how the audio cassette made him “love music more” and harkens back to the time of creating mixtapes which made you have to “work harder as a music fan” because you had to listen to the music and make judicious us of the record and pause buttons unlike today where it is a matter of drag-drop-burn.
This was exactly what Nick Moreton from BOI Records was saying in the interview about the cultural significance of the mixtape. I think Nick and the rest of the lads could be on the crest of a wave of the revival in the interest of the audio cassette-they might actually be onto something here! I wish them the best of luck with their release.