General HIE news

Island music studio aims to attract global stars

A new residential music studio in the Outer Hebrides is set to capitalise on its scenic location and high-end technology to attract both UK and international recording artists.

Black Bay Studio has opened for business on the island of Great Bernera just off the west coast of the Isle of Lewis.

Accommodated in an old fish-processing factory at Kirkibost pier, with stunning coastal views, the new venture has been supported by a grant of £71,552 from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) with match funding from the EU LEADER programme.

Established by Pete Fletcher, who moved from Nottingham to Lewis with his wife and two children in 2015, Black Bay Studio aims to attract world-class recording artists to the Outer Hebrides. Already a producer with a successful track record in the UK music industry, Mr Fletcher believes that his studio management and production experience, combined with an impressive contact book, will help to make Great Bernera one of the most exclusive music recording destinations in the UK.

The £262,360 project has seen the internal redevelopment of the former fish factory into a high quality recording facility with accommodation included on-site for visiting artists. It is anticipated the business will employ up to five people within three years, and provide training opportunities for local young people in areas such as sound engineering and studio management.

John Macdonald, account manager with HIE’s area team in the Outer Hebrides, said: “This was a well-researched project with an impressive potential customer base. It’s a unique opportunity for the area. The creative industries sector is very important in the Outer Hebrides, where there is a strong cultural element to much of the activity, and this helps to support a vibrant music scene.

“Both HIE and Alex Smith at XPONorth have worked closely with Pete to bring this ambitious project to fruition. We believe it will prove a very positive addition to the island’s creative network and will help to raise the profile of the Isle of Lewis and the wider Outer Hebrides within the international music industry. There is still much to do, but the foundations are there – and the vision is there too.”

HIE has a long history of providing support for the creative industries and anticipates that the new studio, particularly given the profile of the bands and artists likely to be visiting and recording at Black Bay, will make a significant direct contribution to the local economy in what is considered a fragile area.

Reflecting on the studio opening, founder Pete Fletcher, said: “There are two parts to the business: mixing and mastering files sent to us, and working with the bands that come here to record. The ambition is to increase the number and the stature of bands that come here.

“To attract major artists, the studio needed to be something really special. We have a superb location, and now we also have the technical recording facilities too. We’ll continue to improve the other elements to create a world-class residential recording studio. It’s been hard work getting to this point, but with the excellent support and encouragement from HIE and LEADER we got there, and I’m delighted.”

www.blackbaystudio.com

 

Stiùidio clàraidh sna h-eileanan an dòchas gaisgich mhòra a’ chiùil a tharraing 

Tha stiùidio ciùil ùr, le àiteachan-fuirich, sna h-Eileanan an Iar an dòchas luchd-ciùil Breatannach agus eadar-nàiseanta a tharraing chun a’ ghoireis aca a tha suidhichte air làrach air leth brèagha agus a tha uidheamaichte le teicneòlas barraichte is fìor ghoireasach.

Tha Black Bay Studio air fosgladh air eilean Bheàrnaraigh far taobh siar Leòdhais. Chaidh a thogail am broinn seann fhactaraidh èisg aig cidhe Chirceboist, am fianais sheallaidhean eireachdail den mhuir, agus fhuair an iomairt ùr seo tabhartas maoineachaidh bho Iomairt na Gàidhealtachd is nan Eilean (HIE) luach £71,552 agus chuir am prògram LEADER aig an Aonadh Eòrpach sùim cho-ionann ris.

Chaidh Black Bay Studio a stèidheachadh le Pete Fletcher, a thàinig a Leòdhas à Nottingham còmhla ri a bhean is an dithis chloinne aca ann an 2015, agus tha e ag amas air luchd-ciùil iomraiteach le cliù eadar-nàiseanta a tharraing gu na h-Eileanan an Iar. Tha Mgr Fletcher air eòlas is ainm a chosnadh dha fhèin mu thràth mar riochdaire ann an gnìomhachas a’ chiùil ann am Breatainn, agus tha e dhen bheachd gun cuidich an t-eòlas a th’ aige air obair stiùiridh is riochdachaidh ann an stiùidiothan, agus an uiread dhaoine as aithne dha ann an saoghal a’ chiùil, e le bhith a’ stèidheachadh ionad clàraidh ann am Beàrnaraigh cho sònraichte is cho goireasach 's a gheibhear ann am Breatainn.

Chaidh £262,360 a chosg air a’ phròiseact seo gus taobh a-staigh seann fhactaraidh èisg a leasachadh gu bhith na ionad clàraidh sàr-mhath le àiteachan-fuirich air an làrach airson an luchd-ciùil a bhios a’ tadhal air. Thathar an dùil gun toir an gnothachas cosnadh do suas ri còignear dhaoine taobh a-staigh trì bliadhna, agus gum faigh daoine òga san sgìre cothroman trèanaidh ann an sgilean leithid innleadaireachd-fuaime no stiùireadh stiùidio.

Thuirt Iain MacDhòmhnaill, manaidsear-chunntasan ann an sgioba HIE sna h-Eileanan an Iar: “Chaidh deagh rannsachadh a dhèanamh air a’ phròiseact seo agus tha coltas ann gu bheil cothrom ann àireamh mhòr de luchd-cleachdaidh a tharraing. ’S e cothrom fìor shònraichte a th’ ann dhan sgìre. Tha na gnìomhachasan cruthachail glè chudromach dha na h-Eileanan an Iar, far a bheil cultar aig cridhe tòrr den obair a tha a’ dol air adhart, agus tha an goireas seo a’ toirt taic do cheòl san sgìre - pàirt den chultar a tha fìor làidir.

“Tha HIE agus Alex Mac a’ Ghobhainn bho XPONorth air a bhith ag obair gu dlùth còmhla ri Pete gus am pròiseact lèirsinneach seo a thoirt gu buil. Tha sinn dhen bheachd gun cuir e gu mòr ri saoghal cruthachail an eilein agus gun cuidich e le bhith a’ togail ìomhaigh Eilean Leòdhais is nan Eilean Siar san fharsaingeachd ann an gnìomhachas eadar-nàiseanta a’ chiùil. Tha tòrr ri dhèanamh fhathast, ach tha am bun-stèidh ann a-nis - agus tha an lèirsinn ann.”

’S fhada bho thòisich HIE a’ toirt taic do na gnìomhachasan cruthachail agus tha iad an dùil, gu h-àraidh leis mar a tha coltas ann gum bi còmhlain is luchd-ciùil aig a bheil deagh chliù is ainm a’ tadhal air agus a’ clàradh aig Black Bay Studio, gun tig buannachdan nach beag bhon ghoireas ùr dhan eaconamaidh ionadail ann an sgìre a tha air stèidh caran cugallach.

A’ bruidhinn air fosgladh an stiùidio, thuirt Pete Fletcher: “Tha dà thaobh air a’ ghnothachas: a’ measgachadh agus a’ cur nam faidhlichean a gheibh sinn air ghleus, agus ag obair còmhla ris na còmhlain a thig an seo airson ceòl a chlàradh. ’S e a tha fa-near dhuinn gun tig barrachd is barrachd chòmhlain an seo, agus gun tarraing sinn luchd-ciùil aig a bheil cliù is inbhe àrd sa ghnìomhachas. 

“Gus luchd-ciùil ainmeil a thàladh, dh’fheumadh an stiùidio fhèin a bhith fìor shònraichte. Tha sinn suidhichte ann an àite air leth brèagha, agus tha na goireasan clàraidh is teicnigeach againn a-nis san ionad ùr seo. Cumaidh sinn oirnn a’ leasachadh phàirtean eile den ghoireas gus am bi stiùidio clàraidh còmhnaidheach againn a tha cho math ri fear sam bith air an t-saoghal. Bha againn ri obrachadh gu cruaidh gus an ìre seo a ruighinn, ach le taic sgoinneil is brosnachadh bho HIE agus LEADER shoirbhich leinn, agus tha mi air mo dhòigh glan le sin.”

www.blackbaystudio.com

Picture Credit Paul McGinley/HIE

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