Within four months, 20 year old Tamzene from Cromarty has gone from busking to showcasing in front of global music industry representatives, as well as recording and performing at festivals at home and abroad.
The fund, administered by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), has awarded nearly £380,000 to 14 projects in the last two years. The £15,000 grant will allow the label to pilot the signing and digital release.
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop announced the funding award while in Inverness to attend the annual XpoNorth event. Ms Hyslop said: “Tamzene’s story is a remarkable one – going from street busker to working with some of the industry’s biggest names in song writing and producing in the space of just four months.
“Support from HIE and its networks has allowed Belladrum to diversify and bring talent to new international markets. It also shows how modest investment with expert advice and access to networks can have an effective and successful outcome.
“It’s only the start for this exciting, and potentially life-changing, collaboration project and I look forward to seeing where the label and Tamzene go from here.”
Dougie Brown, Belladrum Festival Manager said: “Over the last few years, Belladrum had an idea to set up an independent record label and it’s something we’ve been really keen to do. We discovered Tamzene busking in the High Street - which sounds like a made up story but is completely true - and timing aligned: we’d been talking about labels for a while and we came across Tamzene.
“Creating local artists is really important to Belladrum as well and the Innovate Your Business grant has really allowed us to explore this option and move things forward with Tamzene. It’s an amazing opportunity for us and its really helped diversify Belladrum as a business. It’s another string to our bow in the music industry.”
Iain Hamilton, head of creative industries with HIE, said: “Creative Industries is a key sector for our region, both in economic and cultural terms. It is also a sector that has innovation at its core. Projects like this demonstrate that by taking a different approach, Highlands and islands businesses can not only enter new markets, but can bring new creative talent to market much faster.”