Students Create Record Label: Fader 15

Four music industry students have joined with Director of Technical Arts and Music Industry Instructor, Kevin Jackson, to create an independent record label. Kayla Bernard ‘17, Olivia Dobmeier ‘19, Duncan […]

Four music industry students have joined with Director of Technical Arts and Music Industry Instructor, Kevin Jackson, to create an independent record label. Kayla Bernard ‘17, Olivia Dobmeier ‘19, Duncan Shalda ‘19, and Ryan Burrichter ‘20 are Vice Presidents (VP) of the label, called Fader 15 Records. Jackson is President of the label.

Dobmeier is the Vice President of Artist Development. “There are three other VP’s- Kayla Bernard is the VP of Artists and Repertoire, Duncan Shalda is the VP of Marketing, and Ryan Burrichter is the VP of Business,” she said. The role of the VP of Artists and Repertoire, Dobmeier explained, is to scout talent.

Burrichter, a music industry student “with a focus in the music business” has been charged with enacting the “comprehensive business plan” he drafted, which outlines “everything from a structure to a timeline, to finances.”

Fader 15 Records is an entity of the Greatbatch School of Music, Burrichter said. “The purpose of the label is to be a launch pad for artists who are serious about entering the music industry and give them a leg up as they leave college. It is our goal as a label to work with the artist and get them to where they want to go, whether that be a major record label or an independent label, or a touring deal,” Burrichter said.

“We’re not trying to make money,” Shalda said. “We’re taking people at Houghton College and pushing them to the level of excellency that they should be. We’re taking people who want to do this as a career and pushing them to professional level recording, professional level marketing, and producing and publishing their music.”

The record was born out of the Music Publishing and Marketing class, Shalda said. He said, “But it’s definitely branched out into the music industry major and the music school as a whole.”

Shalda said Fader 15 Records may produce single artist EPs. He said, “We’ve looked into other schools’ record labels, and they’ve taken one or two songs from each artist and made an album off of that.” Since Fader 15 Records has not chosen artists yet, these plans are “kinda touch and go,” Shalda said. “We’re gonna roll with it.”

Shalda stated the response to the label’s call for samples and auditions earlier in the semester stirred interest on campus. He said, “We don’t want to bite off more than we can chew, so we are planning on narrowing it down to just a few people that have the drive and motivation, who want to do this as their career.”

The label hopes to release music by the end of the school year, Shalda said. “We are looking more towards having three [artists]” he stated, who the label would begin working with next semester. The artists’ work with Fader 15 Records would end after they graduate,” Shalda stated.

According to Shalda Fader 15 Records will produce no particular music genre. He said, “That was one of the main reasons we went with ‘Fader 15’. We wanted [a name] that was not genre specific. We want anywhere from gospel from gospel to rap to rock to techno- anything under the sun that’s good music. That’s what we’re looking for, good music.”  

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