Currently, TICE are collaborating with Generator to deliver a free programme called ‘Ladders’ which is designed to help young people in the North East aged 18-24 who are passionate about pursuing a career in the creative and digital industries. Having successfully progressed into a role with TICE following my completion of the first Ladders programme in music, it was now my turn to take a back seat and observe the journey from a different perspective…

The latest group of music students met with their new mentor, Sam Burt, a highly experienced man of the music biz. Sam delivered a very interesting and highly inspirational presentation to his new group of music students about his own personal musical story leading right up to the present day. From looking around the room and engaging in conversation with the new guys (and girl… hi Rebecca!), I can immediately tell that this is a very passionate group with big dreams and aspirations of their own! There is a nice, varied selection of musical preferences within this group ranging from Ziggy’s love of hip hop to James’ passion for indie rock. It’ll be great to see how their individual musical tastes and influences impact on their newly found musical colleagues over the next few weeks!

Once the introductory stage was over with, the group then participated in a little exercise designed to decipher what each individual member of the group wants to achieve and perhaps improve… whether that be their instrument skills or production skills. Sam asked to group to create a little illustration of a fictional character that represents each individual musically. The group were then asked to add annotations around their drawing that stated their current skills and what they would like to eventually achieve. A very fun and creative way of identifying individual goals, that’s for sure! It’s safe to say each person has definitely taken a step in the right direction and put their foot in the door to a career in music just by attending this course alone. Over the coming weeks these guys will be meeting lots of people from within the industry who may become very important contacts in future, so it’s always good to start meeting new faces!

For the second session, the group paid their first visit to Loft Studios – a very high class music studio situated right in the heart of Newcastle City Centre. If any extra sparks of inspiration are needed then visiting Loft Studios is definitely a good way to achieve that! The group met John, the co-owner of Loft (and has also previously worked for CSI!) and Wayne McDonald, the co-founder of Generator and a very experienced DJ/Producer. Both guys made a very positive impression on the group. Wayne revealed how he has worked with some big name artists and also stressed how important contacts are when it comes to carving a successful music career. This current group of students are highly enthusiastic about their love for music and their excitement was evident upon meeting John and Wayne. Both guys are first class and it was great for them also to pass on their wisdom and experience to a new bunch of aspiring music students.
See you next week!
By Tom Dingwall