‘Pitch’ event will take place thanks to student record label

Melody Cherchian

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Five of Five Music Entertainment, a student-driven record label on Cal State Northridge’s campus, is holding a talent search and running a showcase on Nov. 7 called “The Pitch” to find their new band of the year.

Five of Five have accepted band applications through their website from bands interested in an opportunity to sign a deal with their record label. Each band was required to submit three songs, a short biography, two current photos, and contact information. Anyone could apply, whether they have CSUN students or not.

The top three bands, chosen by the co-producers and announced via Facebook, will perform at the showcase to win the votes of audience and executives. Junior Marcee Fitzpatrick, 23, a music industries student and co-executive producer of Five of Five Studios, said the winner will receive the support of the recording studio along with a few perks.

“This year we are facilitating a music video, a cd release party, a portfolio, physical and electronic press kits in addition to representation,” said Fitzpatrick. “We encourage all bands of all genres and ages to apply.”

The independent record label was founded by Joel Leach, a music professor, in 1997. Carey Christensen, music industries professor at CSUN, re-branded the label in 2011 and wanted to create a work atmosphere for students by giving them the opportunity to professionally represent a band.

The process develops through a yearlong course where students are given leadership and team position within the following departments:  production, marketing, artist management, and events. Five of Five has spent the semester hunting through Southern California, searching for talent in the streets.

According to Fitzpatrick, the record label’s main goal is to “discover and develop” amateur bands into professionals. The history behind the studio’s name is based on a similar music theory. “Five of Five” is a musical term that refers to a chord, transitioning from one key to another.

Billy Lawler, 24, a music studies major and a member of the industry marketing team for Five of Five, compares this process to this similar theory. Lawler explains it as a pivot point for the bands. Just as the keys transition, the bands shift from amateurs to professionals.

A good example of this transformation is last year’s winner, Monroe. The band performed at the Big Show this October with the chance to open for hip-hop artist Big Sean.

Co-producers Fitzpatrick and McElver also mentioned their philanthropic plans for the upcoming semester. Once a winner is chosen, they will begin collaborating with the band to plan possible benefit concerts and fundraisers to donate artist proceeds to raising social awareness.

According to Garrett McElver, 25, a senior majoring in music industries and the co-producer of Five of Five Music Entertainment, this year’s event will be much bigger than last time.

“We will be having a red carpet this year with a step and repeat banner in the lobby during the networking reception,” said McElver. “Students will even be given a chance to submit their votes via text after the show.”

The event begins at 6 p.m., giving attendees a chance to network, take photos, meet professionals in the industry, mingle with the artists, and visit the clubs.Doors open at the Plaza Del Sol at 7 p.m. The event, dubbed “The Pitch,” begins at  7:30 p.m. at the Plaza Del Sol in the USU. Tickets are available at the Associated Students Ticket Office. Prices are $10 for general admission and $5 for students.