Monday, 15 July 2013

Rattle, a division of Victoria University Press

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) professor Neil Quigley and VUP Publisher Fergus Barrowman in VicBooks. 
(Robert Cross, VUW Image Services)

Victoria University has today issued a press release announcing the recent acquisition of iconic New Zealand music recording label Rattle, much to the pleasure of Press publisher Fergus Barrowman, whose enthusiasm for music has so far had expression through a seven-weekly 20-minute slot of Radio New Zealand nights, discussing recent jazz releases with Bryan Crump. 

Rattle has released the music of a wide and diverse collection of the country’s most talented performers and composers including Michael Houston, John Psathas, Mike Nock, Norman Meehan, Richard Nunns, Hirini Melbourne, Whirimako Black and the New Zealand String Quartet. Rattle will sit alongside Victoria University Press, creating a unique art-music label that is ideally placed to take advantage of the emerging convergence of print and music publishing.

Victoria University Press (VUP) Publisher Fergus Barrowman says the acquisition of Rattle plays on the strengths of both entities as well as offering new digital opportunities.“It’s a very exciting partnership. As publishing continues to move towards increased online activity, adding recorded music to our cap marks a natural progression in our development.”

Sound Engineer Steve Garden, who has been the driving force behind Rattle during the past twenty years, will continue in his role recording, mixing and editing ground-breaking New Zealand music. “Steve’s expertise, connections and of course his reputation as one of New Zealand’s most trusted and respected recording collaborators, are invaluable and we are really excited about the future with Rattle becoming part of the University’s publishing activities,” says Barrowman.

Victoria University Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) Professor Neil Quigley says the Rattle label will be strengthened by becoming part of Victoria University. “Ultimately, bringing Rattle into Victoria University and aligning it with VUP will bring benefits to New Zealand artists and our country’s creative industries, by providing a stronger resource to capture and publish the endeavours of our top musicians,” says Professor Quigley.

Rattle artists are enthusiastic about the new ownership of their recording label. Professor John Psathas, one of New Zealand’s most internationally acclaimed composers, who is based at Te Kōkī New Zealand School of Music, says Rattle has sustained and nurtured the work of many of New Zealand's most unique composers and performers. “Underlying Rattle's motivation from the start has been an esteem of our musical artists and their work. This value, placed on the music itself above all else, is the guiding principle and the driving force behind the intense energy of Rattle. It is pleasing to see Victoria University lending its support in this way, to ensure these values are upheld into the future.”

Michael Houston: “Rattle is a quality item—smart and serious."

Richard Nunns: “Since the early ‘90s, Rattle has been at the forefront in the recording and promotion of a wide range of New Zealand music—it is a national treasure. Rattle has the highest standard both in recording and promotion and its unique characteristics fit well within the ethos of Victoria University"

On campus this week there are three free lunchtime jazz concerts in the Hub by leading members of Te Koki New Zealand School of Music:

Wednesday 17 July, 12.15pm–1pm: Reuben Bradley and band
Thursday 18 July, 12.15pm–1pm: Dave Lisik and band
Friday 19 July, 12.15pm–1pm: Rodger Fox and band

And VicBooks have a special instore-only offer on Rattle CDs.

Fergus has a bit more to say in the Famous Elsewhere Questionnaire

Rattle artists Norman Meehan and Hannah Griffin perform 'The Hawk' by Bill Manhire

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