Mar 15, 2022 - News

University students gain real world experience running record label

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Image courtesy of Hill Records

The University of Arkansas has found a way to get its students more involved in the local music scene with a student-run record label, Hill Records.

Driving the news: Hill Records released its first EP on Spotify earlier this month. "From the High Ground" features three Arkansas artists, Pat Ryan Key, H3ADCANNON and Foxpaw.

What they're saying: "Label is a cool term, but it's a little broader than that," faculty adviser and music professor Jake Hertzog told Axios. "It's really an entrepreneurial and hands-on learning project that covers a lot of ground in the music industry aimed at giving students chances to practice their skills in the real world."

How it works: Students essentially act as band managers for Arkansas musicians. They vet music, promote musicians, write press releases, coordinate with venues, and run live performances, Hertzog said.

  • Seven leadership roles, such as executive vice president of booking, exist for the organization, and roughly 30 students are involved.

Zoom in: Amy Whiteside, a junior communications major and communications manager for Hill Records, told Axios that communicating with people "in the real world" has helped her prepare for her future career and taught her about different communication styles.

How it started: Hill Records began in early 2020 with the help of a grant of about $75,000 — part of a round of university grants for various arts and humanities projects.

  • The project got off to a slow start because the pandemic hit soon after.

What's next: Hill Records will have its second showcase on May 3 at George's Majestic Lounge. It hosted its first one at George's last semester, and the hope is to have live performances more frequently, Hertzog said.

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