Learning the music business hits a high note

ALAMOSA–Adams State University music business major Zachary Carpenter ’18 will graduate with experience in his field thanks to an internship with Heart Dance Recordings. “There are so many opportunities at Adams State, if you apply yourself and take advantage of those that come your way.”

Carpenter has been doing research for Heart Dance Recordings, including finding stores to distribute CD’s to, as well as promoting Spotify playlists, featuring the music of artists on the label, to yoga, massage, and spa studios. “The record label is mostly instrumental and can be used for relaxation, meditation, or while studying,” Carpenter said.

A New Age Music label out of Phoenix, Arizona, Heart Dance Recordings was started in 2009 by composer and flutist Sherry Finzer, with the goal of creating music to help with healing, relaxation, and meditation.  According to the website heartdancerecordings.com, Heart Dance Recordings music is created for healing, relaxation, calming, soothing, meditation, yoga, spas, and more.

“Zachary is working on a project to bring exposure of our label and music to students at Adams State, with the help of Dr. Matthew Schildt, by promoting the music as a tool to be used while studying,” Finzer said.

Schildt, professor of music at Adams State, signed with Heart Dance Recordings last year. “We had heard each other’s music. After getting in contact, we thought my music might be a good fit for her label,” Schildt said. Last fall, he heard Finzer was looking for an intern and suggested Carpenter.

“Zachary has been very good with communications, accomplishing tasks, and meeting deadlines,” Finzer added. “He has come up with ideas on his own to help promote the label and his ability to follow through and complete tasks in a timely manner will help him succeed in the music business.”

The Adams State music business degree requires completing an internship of at least 45 hours. “Initially, Sherry and I spoke on the phone. Now we communicate mostly through email. The type of work I do can be done from my home on the computer,” Carpenter added. Along with artists from the US, Heart Dance Recordings has signed musicians from Berlin, Canada, and Russia. Carpenter has also helped Art Patience, a musician from the label, with his personal website and YouTube channel.

Carpenter, a percussionist from Colorado Springs, will graduate in May 2018 with a double major in music business and general business. He chose to attend Adams State after a campus tour with Dr. James Doyle, assistant professor of music. “When I came to visit, Dr. Doyle encouraged me to pursue the music business degree, not just concentrate on music performance,” Carpenter said.

As a work-study in the Music Department, Carpenter believes he has recorded 20 to 30 concerts per semester, totaling over 100, throughout his academic career. “This program is the best. With access to the recording studio, I have taken on extra projects with the Music Department and with people in the community. Not to mention all the concerts I have performed in.”

For his senior capstone project, Carpenter recorded three student songwriters. “I oversaw the whole process,” Carpenter said. “It was a really cool experience.”

Schildt said Carpenter is detail-orientated and has been a huge asset to the program. “It has been so great having him in the music program. He has been involved in so many aspects including providing sound for concerts and video live stream. He takes the initiative and figures out what needs to be done.”

The Adams State Music Department hosts visiting artists every semester. Carpenter has been exposed to several professional musicians. In particular, he appreciated working with the Air Force Band. “I spent the entire day, with fellow student Emily Johnson, preparing for the concert. We set up lights and sound and worked behind the scenes to ensure the success of the performance. It was a great experience to work with a high functioning ensemble.”

After graduation, Carpenter plans to pursue studio recording, providing live sound for events, and is interested in behind the scenes tech side of companies including Spotify. “My music internship exposed me to the data side of the industry.”

According to Schildt, Heart Dance Recordings has received recognition in the music industry including Best New Age Album of Year and was on the Grammy ballot. “The label has done quite a lot in the music industry with great artists,” Schildt added.

Caption: Music business student Zachary Carpenter works with Dr. Matthew Schildt, professor of music, in the Richmond Studio located in the Adams State University Music Building./Photo courtesy of Adams State University