Jake Pike

Note: Jake completed our BA (Hons) in Music (Business) in 2018

"Building a brand is something we've put into practice in lectures and assignments, so I feel well-prepared and confident."

Jake Brandon.JPG

Jake Pike - BA (Hons) Music (Business)

Jake is a creative third-year Music Business student, who is currently developing his music video business, Bokeh Live. We spoke to Jake about how he's putting into practice all of the skills he's learned whilst studying at Leeds Conservatoire, in order to make Bokeh a real success...

Tell us about your music video business – how did the idea come about and how did you set it up? 

Bokeh Live is a collaboration of filmmakers from the music business course, creating music videos and other visual content for any artist, society, or business in Leeds Conservatoire. I have been creating music videos in my spare time over the last year and it was received well by those I worked for, but I didn't have a brand or business. As this is my final year, I thought it would be a great opportunity to make a real effort, so I found a team of other enthusiastic videographers and started Bokeh Live.

How have the skills that you’ve learned so far on Music Business helped you to get things off the ground? 

Establishing a brand for Bokeh Live is the key task for me and my team over the next few weeks. Thankfully, this is the kind of thing we have covered and even put into practice in lectures and assignments in the course, so I feel well prepared and confident. Developing a digital presence and promoting ourselves and our work via the internet and social media is something that we business students have all done before. 

Has it helped being in a conservatoire where you are surrounded by musicians to realise this project? Who have you collaborated with along the way?

Being surrounded by enthusiastic musicians has been a massive help, and they have been very keen and cooperative. I have also been able to work with other businesses and societies within Leeds Conservatoire. Last year I collaborated with the Volume Zine and Rotation DJ Society which got me connected with different types of artists around the university. 

Tell us a little bit about each video and who’s involved in each one, was there a particular brief you were working to / story that you wanted to show?

This is an acoustic video for a hard-rock band called 'Near Blackout'. This one was a lot of fun, as the band had collaborated with a cellist and completely re-arranged their originally very heavy song, 'Heaven Knows', to a very relaxed acoustic track. Rock is right up my street and the incorporation of a cello made the video and the track look and sound amazing.

In terms of other projects, my first video was a promotional video for the DJ nights put on by Rotation.I hadn't worked with DJ's before, but I went to one of the nights and got a lot of great footage.I edited a promo reel together and the people at Rotation felt like it really put across the atmosphere and feel of their events. 

I made a second promo reel, but this time for an artist called 'Why Isaac?'. This artist was very art focused and made live gigs much more of a visual experience than many other artists I have seen. My focus for this video was to present all of these unique, visual components in the video, as well as footage of the audience having a good time, as there was so much engagement. 

I also filmed a session with a band called Celestial Green, to be released with their single 'Familiar.' These guys were hardworking but very relaxed and a lot of fun. I really wanted to capture their childlike personalities in the video, so that was something I kept in the back of my mind during the filming and editing process. 

With the skills you've learned on the Music Business course, how do you hope to take your business forward?

To progress we need to continue to grow. Last year it was just me, and this year I have a small team, however I really want to get more people involved. It would be amazing if we could make videos for a quarter of the artists in the conservatoire, but it isn't an achievable goal - at least for this year. By establishing ourselves as a real business and making industry-standard videos for several artists in the university, I hope that Bokeh Live will start to make a name for itself and get more interest from artists and videographers. I also want to expand not only the quantity of content we produce, but the styles we can offer. I would love to get some animators involved, as well as graphic designers who could produce visuals for live events. 

What are your career aspirations for when you graduate from Music Business?

I would love to continue making videos once I have left Leeds Conservatoire. Working for another filmmaker would be an ideal first step, but starting my own music video business independently is an idea that quite excites me as well. I have also spent the last few years working as an artist manager, and the music business course has massively helped me develop these skills which I can take and apply to my future work. 

What are the most important lessons you've learned so far on Music Business that will help with your future career?

Be consistent and reliable. It may sound menial but there are a lot of people out there who lack this professionalism, and those are not the people you want to work with. Be organised and reliable and you will often be treated like a professional. But, to be more specific, skills such as creating and sustaining a business, managing social media, and connecting and networking with others in the industry are skills that I have really developed while on the business course, and will undoubtedly be necessary for my future career.

Find out more about BA (Hons) Music (Business)

"Studying at the Conservatoire has been one of the best decisions I've made in my life." Read the @LeedsNews inter… https://t.co/vmniE7pvPp
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