Smashing into the music industry is tough. Believe us, we had to run the gauntlet of angry editors, strange emails and secretive lunches. However help is at hand, Clash is now associated with the London Journalism Centre, a new venture teaching bright hopes even more about the nuances of music, and indeed wider journalism.
Clash has been so impressed with the quality of the student’s work that we’ve published three large features to date with more in the pipeline. The eight week evening course hones in on a back-to-basics style approach to journalism and steps over any notion of modern ‘churnalism’. Headed up by Lulu Le Vay, the former deputy editor of sleazenation the course has a backbone syllabus of writing reviews, accurate snappy features, interview technique and pitching to titles.
Lulu has written for the Guardian, Independent, Observer, i-D, The Face and Jockey Slut and other titles, as well as working for many years as a music PR and artist manager, steering the careers of Beardyman, Ashley Beedle, Crazy P and Spektrum, and launching indie label defDrive. She was also, until recently, Deputy Course Director of the Foundation Degree (Popular Musician) at the British Academy of New Music. She also works in copywriting and brand content management.
Lulu said of the course: “We live in a media world with more blogs, websites and social media platforms than you can shake an ink pen at,” says Le Vay. ”Despite the gradual disappearance of print, all these platforms require words, and people to write them with skill and flair. Alongside the basics of proofing and fact-checking copy, this course aims to instill an entrepreneurial edge into each individual that will help them launch into the music and media industries. Plus it will be fun!”
There’s a lot of practical work in addition to guest speakers which range as widely as Clash’s own deputy editor Matthew Bennett to the exotic reaches of Jazzie B, Raf Rundell from the 2 Bears, Thomas Ravenscroft from 6 Music and Andy Spence from NYPC.
Aside from picking up Matthew Bennett’s tips on how to pitch successful and intriguing features, other lecturers include Anthony Teasdale from Umbrella Magazine as well as surprise guests dotted across the eight weeks.
There are a few spaces left for the next course which starts from Tuesday April 9th, the overall cost is £225. For more info head to http://journalismcentre.co.uk/courses/music-journalism and see if you have what it takes to build a happy life right in the heart of music.
Words by Matthew Bennett