Author: Rachel Disipio '20
Monmouth University’s student-run record label, Blue Hawk Records, will hold it's first public showcase at House of Independents in Asbury Park, NJ on December 8th to celebrate the release of their 11th compilation album, Volume 11.
“This is the kind of initiative we want our students to take,” says director of Monmouth’s music industry program, Joe Rapolla. “House of Independents is an important new venue in the vibrant Asbury Park music scene. Producing and marketing shows in a professional capacity, applying the skills and training they get at the university, and showcasing their talent adds to our students’ real-world experiences that equip them for life after Monmouth.”
Artists performing in the showcase include the five acts featured on Volume 11: Indie-Rock bands The Nooks and Malibu, soulful soloists Tim DiDomenico and Kristen Wilczewski, and pop/R&B lyricist Jack "Jacke Tripp" Haber. Pop-punk band The Carousers, and solo artist Antonio Gonzales, both acts that were featured on past compilation albums, will also make an appearance in the Blue Hawk showcase.
Album Cover Art by Nicole Govel '18
Each single on Volume 11 was recorded at Lakehouse Recording Studios in Asbury Park, as per their partnership with Monmouth University and Blue Hawk Records. “Recording at Lakehouse is such a privilege,” says senior Olivia Rohlfs of The Nooks. “My band was granted access to one of the best recording studios in the state all because the Blue Hawk team sees potential in our original music.”
Volume 11, whose title is inspired by the cult-classic movie, Spinal Tap, will be available for streaming and digital download on December 6th. Monmouth students are invited to attend a release show held in the Rebecca Stafford Student Center at 2:45 PM that day. Tickets for the House of Independents showcase are available for $8 on House of Independents’ website and can be purchased the day of show for $10. A portion of the proceeds will support student programming.
Author: Ryan Anderson '19
Working both as a General Manager and A&R consultant for Blue Hawk Records this semester has been a rewarding experience to say the least! It all happens in the classroom. The energy from the students has been radiant, and much more prevalent than last year. We cover it all, from graphic design, to organizing a street team, and coordinating a digital marketing strategy. We also have a phenomenal teacher who pushes us in the right direction while giving us space to do what we do best.
The Applied Industry III class chooses and prepares artists for Lakehouse Recording Studios by self-producing their demos with Blue Hawk Studio on campus. This extra preparation sets them up for success when it's their time to record in the state-of-the-art studio. This studio is extremely well-known in the area, has an incredible collection of equipment accessible for our use, and is even where Lorde has recorded in the past.
Once we have completed the recording process with all the chosen Monmouth University artists, we have the final cd's pressed for physical sale, and also organize their digital distribution. At the end of the semester, we run on and off-campus shows where the semester's artists are showcased and we can promote our merchandise and discography.
Being a part of Blue Hawk has been great. I love working one-on-one with artists, as well as working on marketing and overseeing all the different aspects that make "Volume 11" such an anticipated release.
Author: Mark Rodriguez '20
Over the past few weeks, I have had the wonderful experience of bringing our Volume 11 artists to Monmouth's on-campus radio station, WMCX (88.9 FM). Every Wednesday night from 10-12pm, Blue Hawk Records takes over the campus radio station for our own segment, "Blue Hawk Talk". Our great collective of singers and bands for this upcoming compilation are constantly preparing for recording and performing. In fact, many of the artists have already gone to the studio to record their tracks this semester. However, these radio shows allow our audience to see a different side of these artists. Not only musicians, these charismatic people also like to talk and have fun.
I’ve started incorporating more talk-show elements into the show since the beginning of this season. For example, my new “rapid-fire“ question segment has been a hit so far with the guests. These range from opinion questions about music and arts, to silly questions such as “what’s your favorite type of cheese?” My favorite part of running this show is the opportunity I get to pick the artist’s brains on all these different topics.
Our artists and I have also been collaborating on making their own “artist picks” Spotify playlists which get played live on-air. Each artist has had a different feel to their playlist, from Malibu’s Alternative-Rock hit-focused playlist to Jacke Tripp’s modern Hip-Hop and R&B collection. This allows for our show to appeal to a wider demographic of music listeners and hopefully make more people fans of Blue Hawk Records. Each artist also plays one or two songs live on air, including each artist’s original song for the compilation in production. Listeners caught a live rendition of The Nooks’ “Bulldog’s Cage” and Tim DiDomenico’s “Random Words” on the show in October.
The talk show is a ton of fun, and we are going to have our final artist, Kristen Wilczewski, on during the month of November Keep tuning in every Wednesday night from 10-12pm, folks! Click the WMCX logo below to go to their website where you can listen to the live broadcast. Don't be afraid to call in either! Drop us a line at 732-571-3493.