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Creating Collaborations Between Cutting Edge Artists and Producers

Our year long Create:Collaborate programme will support emerging artists and aspiring producers in progressing to the next stage of their careers, pairing participants with an internationally renowned record producer and placing them into a professional recording studio.

About The Programme

In partnership with Teeside based music development organisation Tees Music Alliance, Create:Collaborate will support 2 artists and 2 aspiring producers over 12 months that are at the cutting edge of their development journey, providing opportunities to develop their skills and creativity. For the first cohort, an artist and producer will be selected by Tees Music Alliance, meet them below!


Following our 2022 cohort, this programme will be on an application basis, supporting progression to the next stage of participants’ professional music careers as well as developing new and original creative work. Aspiring producers and new artists will be paired with an internationally renowned record producer and placed into a professional recording studio to develop their work and ultimately produce a release quality track. 

Supported by our team, artists will submit a track and producers will submit a portfolio of existing work. These will be reviewed by our team and submitted to our Music Industry Advisory Group, to partner the best applicants. We will provide online and social media support for the final release, and live showcase opportunities; either at partner festivals or our own events  such as  Generator Live 

Open call applications opening beginning of 2023 – keep an eye out!

Meet The 2022 Cohort

Samantha Durnan

Samantha Durnan is a singer-songwriter, musician and producer based in the North East of England who tells her stories by creating catchy Pop/Rock melodies and riffs.
With influences from ’Stevie Nicks’ to ‘Haim’ the multi-instrumentalist musician has been supported by the likes of BBC Radio 1 Jen & Ally,  BBC Introducing’s around the UK, BBC 6 Music with Tom Robinson, featured as Track of the week in Q Magazine and is an Ambassador of Orange Amps. Samantha has performed as part of The Coffee House Tour, The Big Festival, The Great Escape, Newcastle Pride, Hit The North and supported the likes of Ed Sheeran, Beverly Knight, Finley Quaye, The Hoosiers, Kate Nash, Seafret & John Adams.
‘I’ll be writing and performing the song for the project and I’ll definitely be cranking up my guitar and jumping on a live kit in the studio! I’ve always recorded in home studios so this is a great opportunity for me to experience the recording process with more space, options to get creative and to work alongside two talented producers.’

Thom Lewis

Thom Lewis (AKA Bramwell Bronte) started working as an assistant for Miloco gaining studio experience with artists and producers such as Jamie T, James Ford & Jim Lowe. After moving to Newcastle, he became head engineer at Blast Recording Studios cutting his teeth with artists like The Unthanks, New York Dolls, Thin Lizzy (Black Star Riders), The Yada Yada Yadas (Trunky Juno) and learning from the producers Andy Taylor (Duran Duran), Jason Hill & Keith Olsen.

Since 2016, Thom has been working on producing everything Sam Fender has released to date, initially making music out of their flats and Sam’s managers garden shed. The debut single Play God received Radio 1’s Hottest Record In The World on its day of release, an accolade that became common for Thom and Sam. After multiple singles and tours together with Thom helping behind the scenes, they released the Dead Boys EP which led to Sam being awarded BBC’s Sound of 2018 and winning the Brit’s Critics Choice Award. Thom produced Sam’s debut album Hypersonic Missiles reaching a UK number 1 and recently went platinum in the UK. Over the pandemic, Thom produced Sam’s critically acclaimed album Seventeen Going Under which also reached number 1 and went gold in the UK with the title single going platinum and reaching No.3 in the charts. Seventeen Going Under was nominated for Brit’s 2022 Album of the Year and has made the shortlist for the 2022 Mercury Prize. Thom has recently been working with The Howl & The Hum, Martha Hill, L’objectif and Christy O’Donnell.

Steven Bardgett

Steven Bardgett is a human of many creative arms. They are a music producer, working from the wonderful Green Dragon Studios in Stockton-on-Tees, a videographer, graphic designer, illustrator and festival curator/organiser. As well as this Steven also writes, plays guitar and sings in the band ‘Mouses’ and their solo project ‘stebee’ too.

Steven began their journey in the world of music production (post-studies) in a bedroom in their house. Small DIY sessions became big DIY sessions that slowly took over the house, born from a lack of jobs in the area – “sometimes you have to just try and create something yourself!” They produced works by Casual Threats – including a bunch of Radio 1 plays for their track ‘Hate’-, Dale Husband, Wax Heart Sodality, along with tracking the upcoming second Mouses album. Lack of funds developed a real love for making the most of super DIY recording techniques and equipment – something that still drives a lot of their work, even when in a studio setting. As of this year, they spend lots of their time as in-house producer at the beautiful Green Dragon Studios in the heart of historic Stockton-on-Tees (along with occasionally too many other things to keep up with!)

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