Previously, our BIMM Future Talent series has focused on musicians, though Bristol’s bubbling music scene wouldn’t exist without the dedicated teams of management behind every successful event and artist.
A current undergraduate in BIMM Bristol, Clara McDermott is one of those individuals helping driving the local music scene forward, with an impressive series of events and a record label under her brand Tunnel Vision. Establishing themselves in Birmingham and now in Bristol, Tunnel Vision bring a multi-genre mash up to the local events scene, with everything from jungle to funk, with a focus on pioneering artists, fresh talent and equal representation.
a focus on pioneering artists, fresh talent and equal representation
With 40+ events already to their name, Tunnel Vision hold their parties across the two cities, with their own BRS Disco nights, as well as female talent-focussed Bad Girls Club, plus numerous other specials and one-offs.
Tunnel Vision are proving popular on the scene and look set to distinguish themselves among Bristol’s finest in the near future, with sell out events already under their belts and exciting plans in the pipeline for the record label.
Course title: Music Business
Brand: Tunnel Vision
inviting ravers from all walks of life to come together in love and unity
Do you work within a certain sound?
Tunnel Vision always has and always be a multi-genre brand. There’s so much great music coming from so many different genres that I think it would be silly to limit us to just one or two. We’ve had an array of artists playing jungle, UK garage, UK funky, grime, dubstep, drum and bass, footwork & UK bass; and then we have our regular BRS Disco events dedicated to disco, funk, soul and house.
What has been your company’s biggest moment so far?
It’s hard to pinpoint the biggest moment, as I feel our success has been down to a combination of really exciting events and projects. Some of the biggest sets we’ve hosted have been DJ Storm, Coki, Kahn with Capo Lee, Serial Killaz, Kenny Ken, Aphrodite, Remarc, Serum, Kelvin 373, Ed Solo & Sam Binga, to name a few.
Have you got anything exciting coming up in the calendar?
Yeah, lots of exciting projects in the works! We have a UK funky and 140 EP being released in the next few months, featuring some of the freshest artists in the scene right now.
This constant flow of new sounds and fresh ideas is inspiring, and triggers me to always be coming up with new projects.
Does living in Bristol influence your business identity?
Definitely, Bristol provides the opportunity to constantly meet new people and discover new spaces, which allows me to learn from them and gain a wider perspective of different people’s relationship with music. It’s so special that you can go out any night of the week and hear music you’ve never heard before; I don’t think there’s anywhere else in the UK quite like it. This constant flow of new sounds and fresh ideas is inspiring, and triggers me to always be coming up with new projects.
when I found out I could throw banging events as my career, I knew I had to put my all into doing so
Who or what else do you take inspiration from?
I think I feel most inspired after one of my events – seeing the crowd catching vibes and having a great time makes me want to spread that feeling further and pushes me to do so. It’s amazing realising that you can create happiness through music and parties, and each time it encourages me to go bigger and better!
I also love seeing the progression of our resident DJs throughout our events, seeing them improve and flourish is something I’ve always loved to see, and their dedication to the brand keeps me motivated to keep pushing Tunnel Vision.
Why did you decide to pursue a professional qualification in the music industry?
The main reason I started the course was for the opportunity to move to Bristol and emerge myself in the music scene here. I’d always struggled imagining myself in a job I enjoy growing up, but when I found out I could throw banging events as my career, I knew I had to put my all into doing so! Studying Music Business allows me to put all that I’ve learned with organising and promoting events in Birmingham into a more structured form, meaning I have a greater understanding of what I’d been subconsciously doing for a few years.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learnt at BIMM?
That university is hard work!!
Where do you hope to be in your career in five years?
I want to keep pushing Tunnel Vision to the best it can be and see where it takes me. I’m also really enjoying managing The Island venue at the moment, so working within venue management and programming is looking very appealing! But as long as I’m happy, I’m open to options.
Why are you pursuing your career alongside your studies, rather than waiting till you graduate?
I have been running events since well before I started at BIMM, so I wanted to use my time at BIMM to my biggest advantage by collaborating with the students around me to create new projects and new parties. I don’t know any group of people who party quite like students, so obviously I need to provide some parties for them to attend!
I’m always getting involved in new freelance bits
Are you involved in any other projects within the music industry?
I’ve recently started sharing my favourite music through DJing, which is really fun. I’m always getting involved in new freelance bits as well, that has allowed me to gain knowledge in various music business roles.
What artist should everyone be listening to right now?
There are so many talented artists emerging right now and it’s great. You can discover a bunch of my favourites on the upcoming releases on Tunnel Vision Recordings! The next EP is unannounced at the moment, but trust me it’s fat.
Photos by Dominika Scheibinger