The Performing Arts Fund is a BBC charity committed to developing new performing arts talent from across the UK. Previous winners of the Fund have gone on to produce a Mercury Prize winning album, perform at the Glastonbury Festival, work with likes of Kanye West and Flo Rida and land starring roles in the West End. One performer to benefit from the Fund was Kobi Onyame, a hip hop producer and artist who received a grant in 2008. He reflects on his journey so far below.
The whole experience of PAF was great! Industry professionals including artists, DJs, radio executives, label heads and managers all sat on the panel to give advice. I had the opportunity to pick people who I wanted to mentor me. I picked someone in radio, someone in the labels and an artist - people who till this day I have stayed in touch with and helped tremendously on my musical journey. PAF taught me a lot about the industry and how important it is to make and KEEP good relationships.
BBC Introducing has been a great help to my career so far. I've been invited to record live sessions for BBC Introducing twice and also played the BBC Introducing stage in 2009 at Glastonbury! I have since gone on to perform at other festival stages as well.
I maintain my fan base mainly by playing live, radio plays and the use of social media. One of the easiest ways I have received airplay is through the BBC Introducing Uploader which I have used several times to get my songs to BBC Introducing DJs across the country. I would advise any artist who hasn't uploaded their track to the BBC Introducing Uploader to definitely do so!
BBC Introducing and PAF have added to my growth as an artist and I continue to use the avenues that they provide to get my music from my home studio to you, the fans!"
Kobi releases his new single Dreams featuring Jamie Sellers on July 29th. You can also follow him on Twitter or check out his page on the BBC Performing Arts Fund website.
Every year the BBC Performing Arts Fund supports a different art form - dance, music or theatre. This year the focus is on music and the latest scheme, Music Fellowships, will open on the August 13th 2012. For more information, find details on the website or find them on Facebook and Twitter.