Celebrating the first Gold Records, GRAMMY award nominations and other personal-bests of Liveschool graduates, students and team.
The musical journey is marked by firsts: the first completed song, first release, first live show… the firsts keep on coming. So to recognise those personal moments, here’s some recent milestones our fam have hit…
FIRST MIX SET OF SELF-PRODUCED ORIGINALS : I.C.Y.
A satisfying moment for DJ’s is playing to a crowd and dropping a track they’ve made themselves. A similarly big moment is being able to compile multiple self-produced tracks into a continuous mix. Recent graduate Isabelle (Izzy) Depree, aka I.C.Y. shares here first, here:
A very experimental journey for me, trying out a different type of layout with less structure and a constantly changing BPM giving me more freedom to let my ideas run together.
I used sounds of nature around me, recorded samples from my Arturia Mircofreak synth and spent some time on sound design. This mix is all about seeing what different styles and soundscapes can come out while using a selected palette of sounds with a changing pace. There are of course always going to be elements that could be improved, but this was really just about testing my creativity and seeing where it ends up.
FIRST COLLAB WITH INTERNATIONAL ARTIST : MOSS
Moss has had a big year for releases and massive collabs, but this release represents three career “firsts” for the producer:
- First collab with an international artist (star UK rapper Example).
- First time releasing through legendary label Monstercat.
- First to reach 200,000 streams per platform within a month (and 60k+ on Youtube).
Strictly 4 Tha…
NOMINATED 2023 RECORD OF THE YEAR : NINAJIRACHI
Racking up so many career highlights in one year, Nina has also been nominated for Record Of The Year for her album Second Nature.
“Second Nature is the vast and impeccably crafted debut mixtape from Sydney artist Ninajirachi. Exploring futuristic and ecstatic club sounds, Second Nature showcases Ninajirachi’s talents as a producer, with a precise ear for detail and a singular ability for immersive world building. Whether you’re listening on a dancefloor or in your headphones, Second Nature marks the producer undoubtedly as one of this country’s most talented.”
— SMAC Awards
FIRST US FESTIVAL DEBUT : NINAJIRACHI
Fresh off the release of her album Second Nature, Ninajirachi has just dropped that she’s off to play at none other than Lollapalooza this year! Combine this with Los Angeles festival HARD Summer, Brownies & Lemonade & club shows in Vegas, Nina is about to take the US by storm.
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FIRST MUSIC VIDEO : SAIEESH
How others hear your music is unique to each listener, but seeing someone else’s interpretation in your first music video is an absolute trip:
For the first single from his debut album, SAIEESH affirmed this feeling: “(video director) Arun came at with me his idea that to me was sooo far away from what I had envisioned but he gave it a life and meaning to the song that I didn’t know it had. He and his team delivered. I’m so very grateful that he was able to visualise the song and make it everything that it is now.”
Director & Editor: Arun Surendran
3D Designer: Cameron Fernandes
Liveschool trainer and mix engineer George Nicholas has been nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Engineered Album. More specifically for the album Adolescence by Baynk, in the award category “Best Engineered Album, Non Classical”. The GRAMMY Awards night is 6 February 2023. Could George be the second Liveschool trainer to win a GRAMMY?
J AWARDS 2022 MUSIC VIDEO OF THE YEAR : 1300
1300 keep notching up the milestones featured on this page. Nominated last year for the 2021 Unearthed J Award they have now have taken out the 2022 J Award for Best Music Video – their DIY homage to the cult film Oldboy. Watch:
‘YOUR SHOT’ 2022 WINNER : ATALYA RODRIGUES
It’s the world’s biggest Dj Competition, and Student Atalya Rodriguez aka Rezzx has taken out top spot. She goes hard in the paint, check her winning mix here:
Atalya is actually the second Liveschool student to win the comp – check out Club Angel aka Gabriel Espinosa’s winning mix for 2019 here.
30 MILLION MILESTONE: LDRU Streams ‘Keeping Score’
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FIRST GOLD RECORD: BADRAPPER
The first gold record you get as a producer, how does that feel?
In his own words, producer Joshua Andersen aka Badrapper says “Dreamt about this since I started making music. Crazy that the first hip hop song I produced went gold. Cheers to @chillinit.420 and the team for having me on. 😁 inside.”
Massive props to Josh – he’s been putting in the yards without pause. Check out his work with Chillinit across multiple tracks including Henny & Reefer – and hear more bass heavy Liveschool graduates via our bass-heavy alumnu releases playlist.
FIRST ARIA AWARDS: MIDDLE KIDS
Hugest congrats to graduates Harry Day and Miles Elkington on their win with Middle Kids for Best Rock Album 2021. Incredibly, these legends outpaced category icons AC/DC and Midnight Oil to take out album of the year. The ARIA’s are Australia’s Grammy’s – and while rock isn’t the first genre you associate with Liveschool, you’ll find some of the most interesting producers have eclectic backgrounds and well-rounded careers.
FIRST COMPLETED TRACKS
A truly unique sound and style is emerging from this freshly-minted artist and we’re glued to see where Relms leads us next. Self-producing an original style of music is challenging enough, but Relms has proved you can do this while working full-time, studying at Liveschool and raising a family.
FIRST SOUNDTRACK: MIRASIA
Liveschool graduate Mirasia’s first soundtrack is for a project close to her own heart. Artist, producer, DJ, party leader and champion of QTBIPOC and now soundtrack maker for this doco for Pedestrian TV:
FIRST RELEASE ON A LABEL // 1300
After self-releasing their first 2 singles, the next “first” for K-Rap crew 1300 is their 3rd single Smashmouth going out on Nina Las Vegas’ NLV records.
We’re gonna have to pace ourselves on these guys, they’re for sure gonna crack the big-time so expect a lot more “firsts” to come thru…
FIRST REMIX COMPETITION // Hellogrimbo
In her first ever attempt at a remix, Hellogrimbo just took out 3rd place in a remix comp for Kučka!
She hasn’t even finished her Liveschool course and the track is killlller!. Plus she clocked above nearly 500 other entrants. We go into more detail on it and you can hear the remix here.
DOUBLE DEBUT! // Jaynee
Out of nowhere, we find that graduate Aimee Green has collaborated with Drum & Bass don (and Liveschool trainer) Royalston. It’s not our first student-trainer release so we can’t claim that. But this is the very first outing for Jaynee!
And the very next week we see she drops her first ever self-produced solo release.
Two debuts! This is our first “double first”!
FIRST VIRTUAL CONCERT // Ninajirachi & Kota Banks
Their live shows are lit. If you’ve been lucky enough to catch one of their live shows between lockdowns you know it.
And even lockdowns didn’t hold them back. The crew at Powerhouse rained down high-tech logistics to pull together this one-of-a-kind virtual show.
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As a part of the event prep, Nina gave a breakdown of how the songs were made…
FIRST MUSIC VIDEO // Sir Jude
This is just…. I mean… where to start? A current Liveschool student collaborating with a Liveschool trainer (who themselves was a star graduate) making a crazy good track and a beautifully-produced video. This release is full of personal firsts and personal bests… check it out. Big love and congrats to Juliana Barillaro and Sam Sakr!
FIRST ON THE SCENE // 1300
Absolute fire. And breaking new ground. 1300 are Sydney’s first K-Rap crew and they’re innovating madly on the genre with wicked flow and great production. “No Caller ID” is their 2nd release and their first music video. Keep these guys in your feed – big things are coming:
FIRST VIDEO // Warm Ride ft Blu3 Boy
Following on from a string of great releases comes our man Warm Ride with his new tune Something. Featuring vocals from Blu3 Boy, Warm Ride doubles down on the soulful lo-fi sounds that have defined his output so far. The video for Something matches the mood perfectly, with two bearded blokes cruising a summer beach scene on motorised Lazy Boy recliners – probably the best way to enjoy Warm Ride’s laid back sound.
FIRST RELEASE // Aroha
Aroha is one of the biggest names in the New Zealand dance music scene, as a DJ she has supported the biggest artists on the planet and hosts prime time radio shows. Recently Aroha has spent more time focussing on her production skills and the result is her debut EP No More Jenga, a heady mix of bass, breaks and house grooves for the dancefloor and you can read more about her first release here.
FIRST TWITCH STREAM // Liveschool
Recently, two of our favourite artists Touch Sensitive and Setwun took over our Sydney for our first ever Liveschool Twitch stream. In an event we called “Whose Bassline Is It Anyway” the two producers got down and dirty with our collection of vintage synths and outboard gear, combining hardware and software with Ableton Live as the control centre – all while taking input and feedback from the viewers to help steer the direction. Watch the session here and follow our Twitch channel for future events.
FIRST RELEASE // Ten Brains
Liveschool trainer Doug Wright wears a few musical hats, but it’s his new Ten Brains project that has our attention as a Liveschool First. In partnership with longtime collaborator Russel, Doug’s new project is pushing out further into deep dance territory. With nods to dub technique and techno minimalism Ten Brains is a step further into the wormhole for one of Sydney’s finest producers.
FIRST VINYL // Barney In The Tunnel
Barney In The Tunnel is a collaboration between Sydneys most iconic DJ Barney aka Kato and prolific producer Tunnel Signs. Their debut release has hit all the right notes, with their tune Classic Kickon gaining support from tastemaker DJ Gerd Janson and getting a 12″ release on the German label Cashminus.
FIRST AWARD NOMINATIONS // Logic 1000 and Setwun
It’s been a huge year for both Logic 1000 and trainer Josh aka Setwun which has been reflected in them both receiving nominations in the annual FBI Radio SMAC Awards. Setwun got the well deserved nod in the “Best Album” category for his Our World LP – a record packed with slick grooves and authentic disco/boogie/funk production. Logic 1000 has rightly received the nomination for Next Big Thing in a year which saw her follow up her massive debut Please Believe Me with several notable releases and the announcement of her own record label!
FIRST RELEASE // Gabriel Espinosa
Gabriel Espinosa first popped up on our Alumni radar when he won the Your Shot DJ competition in 2019. Since then we have kept a close eye on his progress and were thrilled when we came across his debut release. Lovin n Holdin / Silk is a two track release loaded with crunchy UK influenced drum production and an absolutely amazing sound for a producer on debut.
FIRST CASSETTE // DJ Plead – Relentless Trills
DJ Plead is the moniker of Jared Beeler and a name familiar to fans of underground dance music around the world. The online distributor Boomkat has tapped Plead for an instalment in their Documenting Sound series, a collection of cassette tape mixes by artists at the top of the game in electronic music. Click through for a listen on the Boomkat site.
FIRST TIME SINGING // Ninajirachi – Blumiere
Former student, and now Liveschool trainer, Nina needs no introduction on this blog. Her Ninajirachi project continues to go from strength to strength with millions of streams and a full touring schedule, but recently Nina has taken a big first step. Her Blumiere EP was the first to feature Nina’s own vocals. The result of her evolution speak for themselves, with Blumiere containing some of her most personal and fully realised work to date.
FIRST SELF PRODUCED TRACK // Ella Pho
Liveschool graduate Isabel Stewart has recently released her first self produced track under the name Ella Pho. After generating huge numbers of streams on her debut co-produced tune Fences, we are stoked to see Isabel turning her production skills into a fully realised and self produced track!