The BIMM Student Sessions

at The Great Escape 2015

Here at BIMM, we know our students are aiming for a long and sustainable career in the music business, so we do all we can to connect them with those individuals and companies who make the industry tick.

So as Lead Education Partner for this year’s The Great Escape – Europe’s leading festival for new music – we’ve organised a very special industry panel event, created exclusively for our BIMM students, graduates and music industry contacts, in order to make that happen.

Called ‘The BIMM Student Sessions at The Great Escape’, the event on Friday 15th May starting at 2pm will see a selection of world-renowned industry experts and musicians come together with students for an afternoon of chat, learning, networking and fun.

Split across two different ‘sessions’, the line-up includes booking agency reps, music business legal moguls, record label execs and even the BBC’s Head of Music… plus a very special band from Manchester!


Session 1: ‘WE ARE A&R’ – Panel Discussion

This unique event will see an industry expert panel made up of music business professionals, record label execs and media company representatives tell first-hand what it’s like to work in the music business… with a Q&A session too.

Hosted by: Ann Harrison and Ian Ramage
Jeff Smith – Head of R2 & 6 Music
James Endeacott – 1965 Records
Bryan Johnson – Spotify. Artist Services
Mark Bennett – The Agency Group

Session 2: Everything Everything Q & A

We’re honoured to be welcoming award-winning Manchester band Everything Everything to the stage to talk to students about their amazing music industry success.
Guests: Everything Everything along with manager, Peter McGaughrin

Hosts & Speakers

To find out all about the wealth of experience that our guests will be sharing with the audience, please read through the bios below.

Ann Harrison
Ann is an experienced music business lawyer, consultant at Swan Turton, author of “Music: The Business” and co-presenter of Music Business Courses, providing bespoke and small group specialised training in all aspects of the music business as well as courses for The Guardian in their Masterclasses lecture series.

Ian Ramage
Ian is an experienced music industry professional, having worked in major label marketing, as well as running A&R at BMG and Sony/ATV publishing. He’s now involved in managing artists, consulting for music corporations and lecturing about the business of music.

Jeff Smith - Photo credit: Jay BrooksJeff Smith
Jeff is the Head of Music for BBC Radio 2 and BBC 6 Music where he’s responsible for the music policy and music strategy for both of these stations. In his time with the network, Radio 2 has achieved its largest ever audience reach and 6 Music has become the UK’s biggest digital-only radio station.

Previous to this, Jeff was International Programming Director of the digital music service Napster, which was named ‘Best Digital Music Service’ in the Music Week Awards and won ‘Best Innovation’ at the BT Digital Music Awards. Before joining Napster, Jeff had accumulated over 18 years of programming experience in the UK radio industry, including positions at BBC Radio 1, BBC World Service and Capital Radio London.

Photo: Jay Brooks

Mark Bennett
Starting from a direct sales background before moving into selling t-shirts for bands, Mark really has done it all in his music career. From tour managing and managing, to booking tours from his bedroom and finally joining the world’s largest independent booking agency – The Agency Group – every step of the way has been exciting. Whether he’s sleeping on floors with emerging bands or touring the world working stadium shows with Oasis, Mark still has the same drive and desire as he did when he started.

Bryan Johnson
Bryan works within the Artist Services team at Spotify, acting as the main point of contact for artists and managers and representing the artist’s interests to the rest of the business, while at the same time helping them navigate the Spotify model and use it to help grow their careers.

Prior to joining Spotify, Bryan worked at PRS for Music across the Member Services and International teams. His entry into the music business was as the drummer for The Dead 60s (Deltasonic/Sony), but more recently Bryan has performed with Cold Specks (Mute) and provided drums on the Ilan Eshkeri and Tim Wheeler composed soundtracks for the films ‘Spike Island’ and ‘Ashes’.

@bryanmjohnson | @SpotifyArtists |

James Endeacott
Over the last 50 years James has worked in a record shop, played in a band called Loop, been an A&R man for The Strokes, run a record label called 1965 records and tried to unlock people’s minds. He looks like Mick Hucknall, supports Crystal Palace Football Club and signed The Libertines to Rough Trade records in 2001.

Everything Everything are a band who are on a never-ending quest to bring experimentation and ambition back to pop music.

They return this year with their third album, the brilliantly conceived “Get To Heaven”.

This highly anticipated record from the Mercury Prize and Ivor Novello nominees was produced by the legendary Stuart Price (The Killers, New Order, Pet Shop Boys, Madonna) and sees the band evolve still further, pushing and pulling themselves into different spaces and shapes from before.

As infectious as it is thought provoking, the musical adventure of the record provides the backdrop for a searing critique of the modern world.

Everything Everything’s acclaimed second album “Arc” was released in 2013 and entered the album charts at Number 5, spawning hugely loved singles such as “Cough Cough” and “Kemosabe”.

Their debut “Man Alive” (and singles such as “MY KZ UR BF” and “Photoshop Handsome”) established them as one of the most exciting and best-loved new British bands, won the South Bank Times Breakthrough Award and saw the band nominated for the Mercury Music Prize and the Ivor Novello awards.