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Producer Dallas Austin to host songwriting seminar

Producer Dallas Austin to host songwriting seminar as special guest of UGA’s third annual Student Run Record Label Showcase on Thursday, April 17

Athens, Ga. – Acclaimed producer Dallas Austin will be attending the University of Georgia music business program’s third annual Student Run Record Label Showcase and hosting a songwriting seminar on Thursday, April 17, at the Melting Point, a concert venue in Athens.

The showcase, which starts at 5 p.m., will feature eight bands, each represented by a record label run by a team of nine students that, for the past year, have been performing A&R (artists and repertoire) duties they learned in the music business certificate program.

Following the showcase, Austin, one of the most recognizable names in R&B and pop music, will host a seminar titled “The Block: I’m a Writer.” Austin’s company, Dallas Austin Recording Projects Inc., will give students an opportunity to win a songwriting apprenticeship through an “imaginative songwriting event” that will take place during the seminar.

Students will present lyrics recorded onto one of the tracks they downloaded from the DARP MySpace page. Austin and members of his studio staff will serve as judges, selecting five competitors for a 90-day apprenticeship where they will work in teams to hone their songwriting talents. Ultimately, they will compete individually for a chance at a songwriting deal from Austin.

“This is the opportunity for the students to see all their efforts come to fruition,” said music business program administrative director Bruce Burch. “Obviously having Dallas in attendance makes it even more special. Dallas is internationally known as a producer and over the years he has worked with Madonna, Gwen Stefani, Boys II Men and TLC. Clearly, he is somebody who can really make things happen and take an aspiring talent to the next level.”

As part of the certificate program, students have studied concert production, promotion and live sound mixing and practiced those skills by putting on shows at Nuçi’s Space and an outdoor concert series on UGA’s Herty Field. They also learned how to use Pro Tools recording software from music producer John Keane. Each Student Run Record Label had to select a band, record one of their songs and put together a promotional kit. The Student Run Record Label Showcase is the certificate program’s capstone project.

The Student Run Record Label Showcase and the songwriting seminar with Dallas Austin are free and open to all ages. The showcase is from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and the seminar is from 7:15 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

The University of Georgia’s music business program was established in January 2006 as an interdisciplinary certificate program, jointly operated by the university’s Terry College of Business and the Hodgson School of Music. For the certificate, students take seven classes, a mix of basic business and music courses, including the music business I and II courses designed by the program’s co-directors, Bruce Burch and Steve Dancz.