Published on 18 March 2022
Kaleidoscope is an artist management company and independent record label founded in 2015, based in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. In 2020 they became one of the first recipients of Youth Music’s Incubator Fund, supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. We spoke to Andy, the Director of Kaleidoscope, as well as two of the programme’s interns, Natalie and Eve.
“Basically, we had to start our own label, a bit like Kaleidoscope,” says Natalie. “So rather than learning what they do, we had to just kind of do it and learn as we went along. I learnt so much.”
“We didn’t want to bring interns in essentially to make cups of tea and watch us work, because it wouldn’t be worthwhile,” says Andy.
“We were guided through the whole process of branding our own record label, getting the image and branding out there, scouting an artist, having that mentoring and managing relationship with the artist as well through their recording process,” says Eve. “Mixing, mastering, we even got a producer on board … and then we did a full PR campaign to support the single”.
“We were having really good workshops from different industry professionals. I actually started talking to a woman who was a music lawyer – I didn’t even know that was a thing you could specialise in!” says Natalie.
“It meant I could get paid for something that would actually really help me out each week,” says Eve. “It shouldn’t be crazy to think that that’s a possibility [in the music industry], but it was nice to know that it was.”
“The great thing about involving younger groups is getting that fresh perspective on how to approach things,” says Andy. “For example… having input from people who have basically grown up with social media as part of their lives, it does give you some insights on how to message to that younger demographic.
“Getting the funding allowed us to strike a gender balance in our team, to work with minority groups who we haven’t had a chance to work with previously – both on the musical side and the intern team. So it’s helped us reach into communities that were underrepresented in a way that we probably wouldn’t have had the money to be able to do on our own.”