Wednesday, 2 March 2016

The Home of Enterprise: UoB's New Street Records

I spoke to Adam Jackson today about his role in the current student-run record label at UoB, New Street Records. Stemming from an enthusiasm for music and business, two passionate students decided to set up and build the UoB student-run record label, New Street Records in early 2015.

View blogThey realised that there were so many students who wanted hands-on experience in this competitive industry, with a desire to learn how the business side of music is run. Now graduated, these two enterprising students, Laura Hand (who now works at Warner Music) and Anna Blesing, have passed their roles on to current students at UoB, Adam Jackson and Kishan Bodalia, to keep the business alive.

So, here’s how the business works. All members are students, including the artists. The volunteers help in numerous ways: scouting the artists, branding, marketing, drawing up contracts and handling the finances. The whole ethos behind it is giving students the experience of running a business, whilst boosting the popularity of artists hoping to make it in the music industry. New Street Records aims to catch the young talent in its early stages. It’s a win-win situation, everybody benefits. And, with the number of volunteers doubling from 40 to 80 in the last year, it’s clear that the label is rapidly increasing in recognition.

“Everyone on the team has the shared ethos of loving music and really believe in what the label is doing. Everyone is lovely and it’s a big family atmosphere”

This year’s Co-Director, Adam Jackson, is clearly passionate about this industry, and has so much belief in this enterprising idea. He says it’s so much fun and such a welcomed distraction from his studies. This is why he believes he was chosen by former Directors Laura and Anna to take over the business, along with Kishan, whom according to Adam “reeks of business acumen and skills”.

Sam Jackson playing at the Hare & Hounds,
Kings Heath in January 2016
New Street Records recently hosted an Artists & Repertoire and Media night at Selly Oak’s beloved Bristol Pear. Here the events team scouted new artists for labels, picked their favourites and plan to sign them up to the
record label. The event was a huge success, with over 200 people packed into the Bristol Pear.

Last year, the team helped produce their artists’ songs, releasing them on Spotify, iTunes, Tidal and Deezer. All the artists also went on to play at ValeFest in Summer 2015. The label created a CD compilation of all the artists, given out free with tickets to their Album Release Party, which I attended in May 2015 at the Rainbow Courtyard. They hired face painters, break dancers, photo booths and a Caribbean food stall. The event was even in partnership with Spotify and Propercorn.

“The tickets completely sold out and the event was a roaring success”

The record label is also proud of its connections, holding a great relationship with BBC West Midlands, and they have had their story told on Capital FM, and featured in the Birmingham Mail and The Tab.

Adam talked about how he and Kishan are currently in the process of setting up a franchise in Nottingham and Manchester, giving other Universities a platform that supports artists, and as Adam says, “no one loses out by having it. We believe a lot in the idea”.

Co-Director of New Street Records,
Adam Jackson
Adam could not deny the number of skills he’s developed as a result of getting involved with the label. He talked about how as a guy who has always loved music and plays guitar in his band Ken’s Beijing, New Street Records is the first thing where he has been able to channel his pure passion into work. Becoming a part of the label led him to truly understand his capabilities, along with learning how to manage his time with all the different departments in the label. He also says that making sure everyone is happy and not too stressed is an important challenge, since everyone is voluntarily spending precious time contributing to this brilliant enterprise.

“It never ceases to amaze me how much the team gives every week and we all give for free. I can’t quite wrap my head around it”

So it’s clear that these students have what it takes to be enterprising. Their passion for music, dedication, innovation and sheer hands-on approach to this successful business has developed into a wonderful enterprise, evidently beneficial to all that are involved.

Amelia Lowe
Student PR Team


  1. Really wonderful information here i think and even from the title itslef we can understand the motive of any organisational activities. Thank you and please keep update like this.
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  3. hi! thanks for's very interesting this blog....
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