Photo of RMC Student Sarah Forrest playing guitar beside microphone. Quote reads - What truly stood out about Riverside Music College was its unparalleled facilities and hands-on approach to learning. The college's commitment to providing practical experience and fostering creativity is incomparable to other institutions

Can you tell us a bit about your new music?

When writing my latest music, I’ve ventured into new sonic territory, transitioning from my acoustic roots to explore the expressive potential of electric instrumentation. This shift has led me to delve deeply into the world of effects pedals, particularly focusing on the ethereal qualities of a reverb pedal to sculpt a dreamy landscape. Accompanied by soft, emotive vocals, my music intertwines hazy melodies, inviting the audience to explore the captivating narratives woven within each song. Listeners can expect to hear this evolution in my upcoming releases, and I’m super excited to continue exploring in this creative direction.

How has it been preparing for the release and upcoming live show?  (Tickets available for Sarah’s headline show on 8th May at McChuills! )

Preparing for the release and upcoming live show has been quite the journey. I’ll admit, I tend to stress a bit when it comes to releasing music and performing live. However, as always, the hard work ultimately pays off.
There’s something incredibly exciting about the buildup to a release – from promoting the music to sharing sneak peeks and behind-the-scenes insights like artwork and the creative process. It’s a thrill to see everything come together and to finally share the finished product after all the anticipation. I felt this process particularly fun with my latest release “A Million Snippets” the song means so much to me and I enjoyed every part of it.
When it comes to the live show, it’s a big deal for me because it’s my first headline gig. Even though I’ve played live before, it’s a bit nerve-wracking but I’m incredibly grateful for the opportunity. My wonderful band and I have been pouring our hearts into preparing for it, writing new material, and exploring our own take on covers. With each rehearsal, our excitement and creativity grow. It’s truly amazing to share this journey with them and to bring our music to life on stage.

Tell us a bit about your own background/ musical influences?

When it comes to my musical background and influences, Fleetwood Mac has held a special place in my heart for as long as I can remember. “Rumours” was the first album I ever fell in love with. There’s just something about their music that’s incredibly mesmerising to me. Stevie Nicks’ ethereal aesthetic and the overall vibe of their sound is just amazing. Similarly, Pink Floyd’s music has had a profound impact on me. Their immersive compositions have been a constant wellspring of inspiration, particularly when it comes to infusing my own work with dreamy and psychedelic elements.
In terms of my songwriting process, I find myself drawing inspiration from bands like Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin, alongside my lead guitarist, Patrick McDermott. These influences have played a pivotal role in shaping our creative journey together, serving as the catalyst for our collaborative efforts since we began writing together.

How has the HND Music Performance course helped you – which skills, knowledge/classes have been the most useful for you?

The HND Music Performance course at Riverside Music College has been a game-changer for me. Before starting there, I had never written a song. But since joining the course, I’ve made huge progress. The live performance class helped me a lot with things like stagecraft, and it’s also where I met two of my bandmates. The songwriting class was fantastic because it taught me so many different methods and ways to write songs. I finally felt confident enough to sit down with my guitar and start writing my own music, thanks to all the encouragement and knowledge I gained. Plus, the first instrument study part of the course has been helpful for trying out different songs, testing myself and improving my singing. Overall, the course has been a huge help in developing my skills and confidence as a musician.

Why did you want to study at Riverside Music College?

The decision to study at Riverside Music College was influenced by various factors. Despite residing in West Lothian, a considerable distance from the college, I was drawn to its reputation and offerings. An interesting twist of fate occurred when someone I knew from my secondary school’s music department reached out a few years later to collaborate on a project for their graded unit at Riverside. This unexpected opportunity sparked my interest, and upon hearing more about the college’s programs, I felt compelled to apply.
What truly stood out about Riverside Music College was its unparalleled facilities and hands-on approach to learning. The college’s commitment to providing practical experience and fostering creativity seemed incomparable to other institutions. It felt like the perfect environment to kickstart my career in music and pursue my passion with confidence.

What are your future plans?

In the future, I aim to advance my career in writing and development, striving toward bigger goals such as playing more shows and releasing more music as that’s what makes me thrive. Also delving deeper into education is a goal of mine, as I seek to expand my knowledge and skills.
Through volunteering at the Teen Band Experience and tutoring opportunities at the college, I’ve discovered the joy of teaching and mentoring young musicians. This experience has highlighted the rewarding nature of helping others learn and grow, solidifying my passion for education. Seeing others succeed through teaching is incredibly fulfilling, and I’m eager to continue nurturing the talents of aspiring musicians.

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Extracurricular Project Development Programme

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