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Crescendo Trust of Aotearoa charity encourages students to record music from home

Whilst in lockdown, the Crescendo Trust of Aotearoa are encouraging its mentors and mentees to record music from home using Zoom, a microphone and decent wifi.

The Auckland outreach programme and not-for-profit charity CTOA are encouraging disengaged young people to record music from the safety of their home bubble. Established in 2012 by Marcus Powell, the charity has worked with more than 2,300 young people across seven hubs throughout Auckland aiming to get them back into further education, training and employment.

Powell developed the programme to nurture and empower and give lifelong skills to disengaged young people as a way of helping them back into education. The programme offers mentoring in a variety if areas including, song writing, beat making, production, recording, studio time, instruments, stage presence, photography and so on.

One of many success stories from the charity is Auckland rap duo Church, who released hit single Ready or Not and have since recorded their debut album Thorough Bread. The trust participates in collaborative partnerships with high schools, tertiary institutions, government agencies and other not-for-profit organisations.

Powell says the technology available at home allows them to stay connected and do remote mentoring and educating.

“It’s quite extraordinary how quickly we worked and how quickly the technology adapted to suit our needs. This has given us the opportunity to help more young people around the country as we can now work with anyone at any time.”

CTOA mentor and educator Dave Atai, a Nesian Mystik member and music producer, has continued to mentor using at home solutions since the beginning of lockdown.

“Dave can control the sound levels at his end, while the mentee performs on the other end of the Zoom call. Through Zoom he has the ability to allow the mentee to adjust their own levels and complete their own mixing. All they need is a microphone and a decent WiFi connection,” says Powell.

“Dave and CTOA mentee Keegan Tunks, AKA Velveteen Shakes, recorded a song through Zoom called What is it to fall apart. The emerging artists are so inspired and excited by the transformative power of music they don’t want to wait to get out of lockdown to record.”

According to Atai ‘What is it to fall apart’ will have listeners shaking their bodies due to its 70’s funk and modern hip-hop production.

“Keegan Tunks, AKA Velveteen Shakes, weaves a colourful sonic tapestry that is bound to drag listeners by their ears right to the dance floor,” Atai says.

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