For a second consecutive year, the !K7 Music team has successfully completed the social project running in partnership with Ernst-Reuter-Schule (ERS). The school, located in Berlin Wedding, has some of the highest rates of inequality in the city which is why the collaboration provided an excellent opportunity to give back to our local community by providing the means and entry points to tools and resources the students usually do not have access to.
For this year’s initiative, the !K7 team was joined by Ableton in order to allow students to work hands-on with their gear, making this project reach its full potential. Overall, we organized a program of lessons and activities for class 3.9 – comprising approx. 30 students between the ages of 12 and 14 – as part of the 2022-2023 school year. The objective was to have them experience the entire process from writing and producing to releasing and promoting their own music.
We are happy to present their result – the track ‘TOP’ from ‘Strasse der 812’ available here. Released by !K7 on Spotify and Apple Music.
First, the class visited the !K7 HQ and met with staff from different departments to talk about the different sides of the music business including distribution, marketing, production, IT and operations. Then, upon our first visit to the school, we showed the students different examples regarding the identity of artists and how these are influenced and communicated through social media, music videos, fashion and more.
Afterwards, we ran two songwriting workshops with a different emphasis per session. As part of the new partnership with Ableton, we worked alongside Berlin producer and Ableton staff member Mortiz Paul aka Leibniz – who was the organizer of the music production workshops – and Ableton’s Education Specialist Brian Smith, who assisted during the workshops.
The first workshop was aimed at capturing the students’ ideas. Using the Ableton Push, the students created grooves, beats and loops for their track – material that was then used by Moritz to produce and arrange the final beat. The second workshop featured Berlin-based rappers Sorah and Alice Dee who helped the students develop their own message and lyrics which were then recorded and worked into the beat by Moritz. In a last feedback session the students were able to communicate final changes to the track.
After finalizing the track, the students presented their ideas for a cover design which we worked into a cover artwork. Lastly, they focused on creating social media content and producing a music video and also took the initiative to set up their individual Instagram channel. Moreover, they organized a release party at the school, designing flyers and VIP invitations for the event.
At !K7 Music, we handled the tracks just like any other release, ensuring they went through our regular digital distribution channels and setting up the royalties and rights accordingly to ensure the students have full legal ownership of their music.
The project has been a great success for all parties involved and included key learnings for future projects of this type. Despite coming across challenges along the way, we achieved what we set out to do and are proud of the results. Above all, it has been inspiring and joyful to see the students’ enthusiasm and confidence grow throughout the project as well as witnessing their pride upon the song’s release.
With the project coming to an end, we are excited to share that our partnership with ERS will continue as we have signed a contract with the school, ensuring the project’s ongoing progress and development as well as cementing our commitment to getting involved and making an impact on a local level – in line with our beliefs and values.
We strongly encourage other companies to engage in similar projects focused towards their local community as they have a real, tangible impact. We are keen and open to share our experiences and insights with other interested individuals and/or companies. For more information, please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org.