Singing in the shower? Time to hit the road

Fort William musician Kier Gibson, who learnt the art of live touring via a national scheme called Hit The Road.

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You’re young, you’ve got a voice, you can play an instrument or two, and you want to be a star. What do you do now to be the next Lewis Capaldi?

Well, the Scottish Music Centre and Creative Scotland have an idea: join Hit The Road, a training scheme which ‘equips young musicians with the knowledge, contacts and tools necessary to work and tour’.

The initiative has acted as an early stepping stone in the careers of Scotland’s emerging musicians and songwriters, including Lewis Capaldi, Be Charlotte, Parliamo, RILEY, Deni Smith, Zoë Bestel, Velvet, Angry Man Car Park, Fort William artist Keir Gibson, and JR Green – brother Jacob and Rory Green from Strontian.

The national youth music project, run by the Scottish Music Centre and funded by Creative Scotland’s Youth Music Initiative, is now open, and seeking applications from young artists age 14-19 to tour Scotland in 2021/2022.

Ahead of each tour, musicians attend expert masterclasses, sessions and workshops covering everything from production to performance, royalties and marketing.

Gill Maxwell, executive director of the Scottish Music Centre, said: ‘At last, after 18 months of music industry shutdown, Hit The Road is back and looking for new young talent to tour Scotland later this year.

‘We want to hear from emerging artists aged 14-19 working in any music genre, either as a solo artist or with a band. All our venues have 14+ licences so that new young audiences can see and support their local bands.

‘Our nationwide team of music industry mentors is on standby to guide the selected artists through stagecraft, song choice, press and pr, while our professional photographers will provide a set of individually tailored promo pics. We can’t wait to see and hear all the new talent coming out of Scotland this year!’

The Scottish Music Centre is a membership organisation of over 100 composers and creative businesses. Creative Scotland is the national agency for the arts, screen and creative industries, investing money from the Scottish Government and the National Lottery towards the development of Scotland’s creative future. Its Youth Music Initiative creates access to high quality music making opportunities, enables young people to achieve their potential in or through music.