There’s no doubt that Birmingham is a city steeped in diverse culture and history. After all, this is the place where the Peaky Blinders originally roamed, where Black Sabbath formed and where recently renovated creative hub the Custard Factory is based. It’s also home to our BIMM Birmingham college, located in the heart of the creative Digbeth quarter.
But, did you know that it’s also the ideal place for studying music journalism? Just take a look at some of our reasons why.
1) Birmingham’s music scene
As part of our Music Journalism course, you’ll have unique access to a huge talent pool of performers, producers, songwriters and music business entrepreneurs to write about, interview and promote. Birmingham also holds some of the best venues and live music nights around for you to attend local gigs and make those vital connections.
“Birmingham has always been a hugely diverse city with a legacy of producing ground-breaking artists from Rock to Reggae to Bhangra”, says production specialist and BIMM Birmingham team member Simon Duggal. “Hare and Hounds in Kings Heath is a great venue. It’s where UB40 played their very first gig”.
“[Hare & Hounds] is the music mecca of Brum because it does everything,” says Music Journalist and Brum Radio presenter Danny de Reybekill. Have a look at his five STAPLES of the Birmingham music scene, including other venues like The Sunflower Lounge.
“For me, Birmingham holds some extra passion that I don’t think other cities have in the same way….It has an amazing rock scene, reggae, underground and the electro-pop in the city is phenomenal. Then there’s the grime scene… I’m pushing for the next generation to come and experience all of the different types of venues, of sounds, of groups of people. Take your pick – there’s more than enough to go around.”
– Danny de Reybekill, Music Journalist and Radio Presenter
2) Music journalism and publications in Birmingham
As well as being the home to musical legends like Black Sabbath and local bands like Swim Deep, Birmingham is also a hotspot for music journalism and music publications, such as Counteract Magazine and Brum Notes Magazine. It’s also the home of many media outlets such as North One Television, Absolute Radio and Brum Radio.
Even The Huffington Post – one of the most respected independent online news providers of today – recently relocated their newsroom to Birmingham’s city centre.
3) Our Birmingham Tutors
Our tutors have lived and breathed music journalism. Just check out our Music Journalism module leader Joel McIver who is the bestselling author of over 30 books in rock music. He is currently the editor of Bass Guitar magazine and contributes to publications such as the Daily Telegraph and the Guardian.
We also have author and BIMM Birmingham Music Journalism tutor Neil Kulkarni. As well as teaching BIMM students, Neil is also hip hop editor of DJ Magazine and writer for Wire Magazine, Crack Magazine and the Quietus website. As well as writing for publications like Kerrang! and The Guardian in the past, he has interviewed the likes of Metallica, Slipknot, Dr Dre, Snoop Dogg and Ozzy Osbourne.
4) Real-world experiences in our classes
During your Music Journalism course, you’ll be exposed to real-world environments. For example, as part of your third-year assessment, you can meet a panel of industry experts to pitch your story to.
In the past, names such as John Doran, (Editor of The Quietus), Laura Snapes, (Deputy Music Editor of the Guardian and previous Editor of NME), and Eleanor Goodman, (Deputy Editor of Metal Hammer), have listened to and fed back on students’ pitches. So, you’ll get access to these kinds of journalists and have real-world experiences under your belt before you’ve even graduated. Pretty great, right?
Of course, there are plenty of more reasons why Brum is the place to be. Check out our other reasons here.
Ready to start your career in Music Journalism? There’s still time to get your feet through our doors and out into the music industry.