With his new venture, he has helped Dumfries singer-songwriter Alex Maxwell release his new single, ‘Inaction’, out on 15 September.
Michael said: “I started working with Alex during my time at SAE for a project which required us to take on the role of an artist manager. This really hit home for me that artist management was what I wanted to do. During the project we had to plan a release, this was when I found that Alex and I had a lot of the same ideas and got on really well with each other. When it came to setting up Fifty1, Alex was the first person I spoke to and asked if he wanted to be a part of it for his upcoming releases. From there we started to work and plan out his next release and how we wanted to market it and what press we wanted. In terms of getting Fifty1 off the ground over the past few weeks, I’ve been setting the company up during my free time around working full time. I’ve also been closely monitoring the COVID-19 situation and how this is affecting the music industry. This has had an impact as I was looking to plan shows to match up with releases which unfortunately hasn’t gone to plan up in Scotland with all music venues shut. Getting Fifty1 off the ground during this climate has been challenging but it’s something I have thoroughly enjoyed and I look forward to growing the company and showcasing Scottish talent.”
"IT'S GREAT TO SEE MICHAEL TAKING THE WORK HE BEGAN AT SAE AND TAKING IT INTO THE PROFESSIONAL WORLD WITH HIS NEW ARTIST MANAGEMENT COMPANY."
- JOHN MARKEY, MUSIC BUSINESS LECTURER
SAE Glasgow Music Business lecturer John Markey said: "It's great to see Michael taking the work he began at SAE and taking it into the professional world with his new artist management company. Most modules on the SAE Music Business course involve aspects of artist management as it is often the central nexus through which an artist deals with every other actor in the music industry. While Live Music is on hold due to the pandemic, it is the perfect time to build an artist's recorded repertoire and focus on the aspects of the industry that are growing. We wish Michael all the best in his new venture, the skills he helped develop while on the course will serve him well."
‘Inaction’ is Alex’s first full-band release and signifies a shift to a more upbeat approach while maintaining the indie-folk and singer-songwriting sensibilities. ‘Inaction’ was also recorded with the infamous Rod Jones from Idlewild.
Alex's music has been reviewed before as hinting at inspiration from Frightened Rabbit, Fatherson, Biffy Clyro, Frank Turner and other singer-songwriters from further ashore and this is the direction in which he's headed.
A landmark 2017 saw Alex championed as a BBC Introducing Artist and Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday ‘Artist to Watch’.
He received further positive responses from Rave Child, BBC Radio Scotland and Amazing Radio following five summer festival appearances.
His first single had repeated airplay on BBC Radio 6 Music through BBC Introducing and BBC Radio Scotland, and Alex was also featured as a Fresh Fave on Tom Robinson’s ‘Fresh On The Net’. Showcase performances at the BBC stage, Edinburgh Fringe and Dumfries Music Conference preceded this.
‘Soul Divine’ was recorded with the Tinderbox String Quartet and was Single of the Week on Janice Forsyth’s BBC Radio Scotland show.
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