Music Industry Innovation

For the first assignment of this module, we had to contact a  local small music enterprise and find out how the business started, developed and their plans for the future. We then had to individually analyse this business and write a proposal for an original music enterprise that we felt filled a gap in the market and explain and justify our idea.

The enterprise my group contacted was called Magic Door and put on club nights in various UK cities and originated  in Birmingham. Based on our research into this company, I was able to conduct a SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) and PEST (political, economical, social, technological) analyses and identify their professional challenges.

I then used this research to support my own business idea which was a company that hosted day long mini music festivals in rural locations. My assignment went into more detail about the challenges and likelihood of success which can be read here.

For the second assignment, we had to work in groups to develop one of our group member’s enterprise idea which we had to pitch and develop a business plan for. Our idea was for a company that hosted 80’s soul themed club nights in Birmingham.

We had to consider various areas such as locations, props, target audience, promotion and budget and finance. My role was looking at props and interior design. I began by watching soul music videos from the 1980’s and noting settings or props that reoccurred in various videos. I then chose aspects of the videos that I felt could be applied to our club nights and browsed various websites to find the best prices to buy or hire the equipment.

I found that for smaller props such as disco balls, carpets, wall hangings and sofas, it was best to buy the equipment. With larger items including the dance floor, I found it was more economically efficient to hire them. I had to consider the budget and work alongside the rest of the group to ensure I was spending an appropriate amount on the props and interior design.

This module gave me experience in planning a company and forced us to consider every aspect of the event we were planning.


Designing With Data

In this module I built on the HMLT and CSS skills I had learnt in New Media Platforms to learn how to build infographics, which are a more interesting way of displaying data. I also learnt some JQuery and used external libraries such as Isotope to make my work interactive.

Each week, we were given a task to develop our skills and incorporate new skills into our work. These weekly tasks can be viewed here.

The first of the two main tasks I had to create was an infographic from data on food security we were presented with. I chose to base my work on the effects of political stability on a country’s food security and how this can be impacted. This is the data visualisation I created:

See the Pen How does political instability effect the percentage of people who are undernourished? by Rosalind (@RozziBurgess) on CodePen.


The second task was to create a cross media product that related to our other production module. As mine was Music Programming, I created a music programming tool which could be used by radio presenters to select, filter and sort songs based on their length, release date and tempo. I used the Isotope library to allow each category to be sorted and filtered. It can be viewed below:

See the Pen Radio Rock Music Programming Tool by Rosalind (@RozziBurgess) on CodePen.


Music Programming

The first assignment for this module was to write, record and edit a 1 hour long specialist radio show on a theme of our choice. I chose to produce an indie rock show which you can listen to here:

This was my first experience at writing a script for a radio show, as well as recording the links in a radio studio and using Adobe Audition to edit and add the songs. I conducted a lot of research into each artist played on the show so that I was able to talk about their upcoming tours, appearances and releases in detail.

This is the running order and script for the show.

The second assignment was to create a plan for an original radio station. Mine was called Rock Radio and was local to Selly Oak, Birmingham, which has a high population of students, my target audience.

For this assignment, we had to develop the station format, the programme schedule (weekdays, Saturday, Sunday), the music playlist categories and examples of tracks that would fall into each playlist, clocks and track rules.

As the station would be broadcast in Birmingham, a lot of the shows focused on Birmingham-based bands and artists and bands who were touring in Birmingham.

This is the detailed information about Rock Radio, the programmes and the music.

As we did two production modules each semester, we had to produce one cross-media product that related to both modules. As my other module was Designing With Data, I created a music programming tool. I found the track information for each of the top 200 songs in the iTunes rock chart and made a table that users could sort and filter by release date, length, tempo and gender of artist. This could be used by a presenter to find songs to fill time in a show, especially if a time period, tempo or gender has been under represented throughout the rest of the show.

This is the tool I created:



Music TV & Promotional Production

For this module, my group made a promotional video for an app that another group member had designed. This app was called ‘Pocket Physio’ and was designed for patients requiring physical therapy.

In the group, my main role was camera operator, and also helped with editing.

This is the video we produced:

As we had to create a cross-media product that related to both of our production modules, we chose to use music from the artist I was representing in the Music PR & Promotion module. This artist was Danny Stubbs, a progressive-house artist whose PR campaign my group was running. As he owns the record label the song, Red Orbit (EA3 Reconstruction) was released on, we had his permission to use it in our video.

As part of the module, we had to perform a pitch to our tutor and an industry expert who provided feedback on our idea and plans to produce it. This gave us a realistic involvement of an industry experience.

Music PR & Promotion

For this second year module, each group were assigned a musical genre of which we had to collaborate with an artist. My group was given house music, and we decided to collaborate with a Stoke-on-Trent based, progressive house artist called Danny Stubbs. We decided to call our PR agency ArtRAVEPR.

317 Logo

As well as acting as A&R for our group, my main role was photographer and videographer. I met up with our artist and performed a photoshoot. These are some examples of the photos I took:

I also used Adobe photoshop to create versions of each image with white and transparent backgrounds, so they could be used for future press coverage and posters.

As we completed two production modules each semester, in second year we were required to produce one product that related to both modules. My other module was Music TV & Promotional Production, so I decided to conduct a Q&A which I filmed and edited for our Youtube channel. The video features a track by Danny Stubbs (he owned the label it was released on and gave us permission to use it) and out PR agency’s logo.

Other parts of our PR campaign produced by our group included a press release, which was sent to local music magazines, some of which wrote articles. We also had his most recent track played on our University’s student radio station, Scratch Radio.

Television Studio Skills

This first year module involved learning the basics of each gallery and floor role in a TV studio. These included:

  • Director
  • Vision Mixer
  • Sound Operator
  • PA
  • Floor Manager
  • Camera Operator

We then had to choose the roles we felt most confident in and act in them for the two assignments. For these assignments we had to work as a whole class to produce:

  • A 5 minute news broadcast
  • A 15 minute studio-based show

For the second assignment, our group decided to produce a music panel quiz show. My role was part of the set design team, for which we collected music posters from local venues and independent record shops to decorate the set.

When I joined Scratch TV, I was able to develop the skills I’d learnt in both TV modules as I worked in various studio roles, as well as sound and camera operator and editor for location based video.


Television Location Skills

The first assignment for this module, we worked individually to film and edit a 90 second video of someone walking around the University. This allowed us to familiarise ourselves with the equipment and software before beginning the group task.

For the second assignment I worked in a group to film an event put on for another group’s Music Industry Skills module.

This was filmed in a bar and consisted of footage of the performing artists and an interview with the owner. I acted as camera operator and also assisted with the editing.