Old Cheltonian, John Askew (NH, 1994), returned to College on Friday 4 December to deliver an Upper College lecture on the music industry and his career as a world-renowned DJ and artist. He described his career path: starting to DJ around the time he left College and throughout university in Brighton. Following this he then got a job at Chrysalis Records as an assistant, moving on to Ministry of Sound and working his way up to Head of Radio and becoming a resident DJ for the Ministry of Sound club. During this time he was offered a weekly show on Kiss FM in London, which lasted for a few years. John then left Ministry of Sound to work for Cosmack Management, managing the radio career of one of his all-time heroes, Carl Cox. John has toured the world many times over and also manages five big recording artists who have toured with the likes of U2 and Madonna, and have also made film score music for many huge Hollywood blockbusters such as Collateral, The Matrix and Shrek.
John explained how different the music industry is now compared to when he started out, “In the music room here there are 15 different set ups where you could all be making music and having a hit record before you’ve even left College” and how with the internet you can make a name for yourself without the traditional mediums of radio or magazines. He also gave sound advice to the Sixth Formers that could apply in any industry; to be original, stand out, be the first one in to the office in the morning and the last one to leave at night, and learn as much as you can from everyone you work with. He left students with a final thought, “To succeed you need to have talent, to excel you need to have knowledge.” The Sixth Form then asked lots of insightful questions, everyone’s favourite being “Will you come back to DJ at one of our socials?” to which John replied yes!
John also offered work experience to any students who are interested in working in the music industry as part of The Association Careers Programme.