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The business of making Huntsville a music city

Posted on April 30, 2018 - By admin  - 0 Comments

Huntsville’s music and cultural scene has been enjoying a modest surge in recent years with new performers taking to the stage in old buildings, bars, churches, restaurants and strip malls. Its growth, however, may best be described as fragmented, something the City wants to change.

“To attract and retain the best and brightest workforce, Huntsville needs a dynamic music and cultural scene,” said Shane Davis, Director of Urban Development for the City of Huntsville. “This is more than an amenity – it’s part of our BIG Picture planning, economic and workforce development.”

We’re convinced there’s a growing market here for the music industry.”

While Huntsville is making strides in its music offerings, Davis isn’t content to leave it to happenstance. He believes the city is perfectly positioned to capitalize on a popular route for top musicians that are hitting the circuit from Memphis to Nashville and Atlanta.

“We should be attracting A-List talent and investing in local musicians,” says Davis, who believes he has a found a path to make it happen.

Council votes to support music audit

At the April 12 City Council meeting, Davis received approval to hire Sound Diplomacy, a London-based music consultant, to provide a market study on Huntsville’s music landscape. The company will research what’s available in the area – from talent to recording studios and performance space – and examine municipal codes, ordinances, zoning, and overall business practices to see if Huntsville is “music friendly.”

The market study will help Huntsville determine if it can grow an industry with what it has, or if the City is far behind competitors and needs to make significant changes.

The findings will help craft a strategy to leverage the assets already here – such as the Von Braun Center, Lowe Mill, and Butler Green at Campus No. 805 – and to develop new opportunities like music festivals and options for Mid City, Ditto Landing, and beyond.

Let’s make music

“All of this started when we began looking at a new amphitheater,” says Davis. “We quickly discovered a wealth of talent working in the Huntsville area and that led to discussions with recording studios and musicians.”

A brief dive into the local music scene runs the gamut. There are recording studios like the successful hip-hop rap Slow Motion Soundz (see NPR What Makes a Music Scene: Hip Hop in Huntsville, Ala.) and a network of songwriters and performers (check out Listen Local Huntsville).

Lowe Mill is nurturing a music colony featuring cigar box guitar makers, concerts,and  Tangled Strings Studios. Huntsville has produced opera stars at the Metropolitan Opera, supports the Huntsville Symphony Orchestra, Community Chorus, Twickenham Fest, Ars Nova, and powerhouse music programs and musical theater at Oakwood, A & M, UAH and others.

“We’re convinced there’s a growing market here for the music industry,” said Davis.

Joining the Music Triangle

Sound Diplomacy sees the potential, too, and is looking one step further.  The company has been meeting with music industry leaders in the Muscle Shoals/Florence area, and they’re eyeing the possibility of folding the Highway 72 corridor into the Memphis-Nashville-Atlanta music triangle.

“We want a growth strategy for the business side of the industry to create another start-up sector for millennials, but we also want to create more cultural opportunities to enjoy music in the community,” said Davis.

“Our goal is to create a music identity for Huntsville that supports a high quality of life and contributes to a vibrant urban scene.”

The music study and recommendations are expected to take about 14 months.

News

SMSEurope Hosts American University In Sweden

Posted on January 16, 2018 - By admin  - 0 Comments

Music as a tool for an equal society

They want to use music as tools to lead American youth away from the criminal banana. On Wednesday, two professors from Alabama Visby visited to enable a future student exchange

In one week, the two professors Andrea Hunt and Robert A. Garfrerick of the University of North Alabama visited Sweden and Denmark to explore the opportunities to create an exchange between students from Sweden and Alabama. During Wednesday they were in Visby. The project is based on the idea of ​​how music and art form the society and its youth. It’s also about how to use music as a platform for social justice.

“We have major social problems with crime and drugs, and this is about how to use music to engage young people and to achieve a more equal society,” said Andrea Hunt.

According to the two professors, there are major social problems throughout the United States.

Article ImageAndrea Hunt was looking to explore Visby.

“It’s about preventing the paved road from school to prison,” says Robert A. Garfrerick.

On-site was also the renowned hip-hop producer Cory Parham, from Slowmotion soundz in Huntsville, who together with Rosanna Eriksson also started Ozone Solutions in Landskrona.

“In the United States, new prisons are being built rather than investing in culture. Here in Sweden, you pay government money on the music, “he says.

“In Sweden, you can get money from, for example, study associations, clarifies Rosanna Eriksson who, together with Cory Parhan, coordinated the project.

On site in Visby was also the hostess Hanna Herbertson who marketed the project.

Searching government funds for music and art projects is difficult in the United States. The music scene is also not as accessible to young people in the United States as it is in Sweden.

“Sweden is doing a really good job and it would be possible to use the Swedish model in the United States, but we have conservative politicians who need to change their minds for it to happen,” says Robert A. Garfrerick.

In May 2018, Andrea Hunt and Robert A. Garfrerickkunna hope to come back to Sweden, then together with a group of exchange students.

“These models are already in Sweden and hopefully we can bring some of our students here,” she says.

via http://www.helagotland.se/samhalle/musik-som-verktyg-for-ett-jamstallt-samhalle-14119517.aspx