My Music Business placement with BE83
Corinne Stewart, a third year Music Business student, is undertaking her placement with BE83. BE83 is a Birmingham based music management, recordings and publishing company responsible for recorded music across the groups labels Warner/ADA, Caroline/Universal and Sony/Orchard.
Tell us about your placement – what is it and what do you get up to on a regular day?
My placement role is PR assistant at BE83. Although my main job role is within public relations, I’ve had the opportunity to take on many different jobs relating to other roles within the music industry sector so their isn't ever a regular day as they're always giving me opportunities to expand in other areas outside of PR. I've curated playlists, come up with marketing strategies for social media and assisted in A&R. I also regularly find myself creating press releases and electronic press kits for our artists when they have single and mixtape releases.
How did you find your placement opportunity?
I reached out to Despa personally after submitting a report during my second year on the lack of music labels here in Birmingham. Through this I discovered BE83, reached out to him a few times, met him in person when he spoke at the University, and kept in contact ever since.
What did you do on your first day, how was you feeling?
On my first day, I helped create a promotional deck for one of our clients at the time who is now one of our artists, Len. It was nerve-racking because I wasn't sure if everyone would agree with my creative ideas and thoughts, but everyone was really supportive and liked what I had to offer, so I left that day feeling really confident in my abilities.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced on placement?
The biggest challenge I faced was definitely during the first few months of me joining BE83. It was being confident enough to speak up and not hold myself back just because I’m in a room full of important people and more established industry professionals. It took me a while to realise that companies especially labels really value fresh and new ideas, and that no question is a stupid question.
What have been your placement highlights?
My placement highlights have definitely seeing the finished product after weeks of preparing for a single or an album release, and seeing the response from fans and audiences at listening parties makes the mayhem that might be going on in the background worth it. My own role in this would be when I’m creating press releases to send out to magazines and newspapers and finally seeing the articles published; the engagement really makes me happy that journalists see the worth in our artists just as much as we do. It helps the overall finished product because after an album is released the work doesn’t stop there, the next phase is to keep the momentum and buzz going, and my role helped play a part in that.
How has your course helped you during your placement?
If I had not engaged during my second year and hadn’t attended a panel discussion my course director was holding, I might have never heard of BE83 or had the chance to speak to Despa, so I’d say the Music Business course helped facilitate me getting the placement. The course continuously helps me develop my skills when it comes to developing my portfolio and my professional work, highlighting useful events to attend and having a better understanding of how the music industry works.
Are you enjoying your placement and do you think it has helped you in the future?
Although I am still currently working at BE83, looking at my time spent there so far, I would definitely say it has been worth it in terms of personal and professional growth and development and also for the opportunity to make connections. I’ve gone from not having any idea of where I want to be after graduating, to having a strong sense of direction and understanding of my own goals and purposes. I would recommend students to go out there, make connections and do something similar to me if possible!