Brent Council has launched Unlocked as part of its Brent 2020 year of culture. It is a response to the new challenges faced by artists and the wider creative sector.
The Brent Artist Network has been taken online, VICE and young people from Brent help debunk conspiracy theories around Covid-19 in a weekly podcast, and a new video interview series showcases the legendary musicians, artists, athletes and activists who have shaped and been shaped by Brent. As part of No Bass Like Home, DJs, musicians, shop owners, promoters and music lovers share their stories of Brent’s contribution to music in Britain.
The VICE podcast takes on some of the false stories being circulated about Covid-19. The 98 young people who make up Brent’s Blueprint Collective are teaming up with VICE to investigate and interrogate the latest coronavirus conspiracies on a new podcast series. Hosted by VENT Weekly presenter Amelia and created especially for the Unlocked programme, COVID-19 Fact Checkers will invite experts and fellow Collective members to sift fact from fiction and reality from rumour – at a time when finding and trusting the truth has rarely felt more essential.
Brent Locked In is a new video series exploring how lockdown has shaped its icons. Guest hosts from the Blueprint Collective will be catching up – in a socially distanced way, of course – with legendary musicians, artists, athletes and activists from across the borough and finding out how they’ve been affected and perhaps even inspired by the COVID-19 crisis.
The Brent Artist Network has a membership of nearly 400 local artists, creatives, venues and organisations. It supports connection, collaboration, and resilience in the local cultural sector. Now, the Brent Artist Network is going online with a weekly offering of free skills workshops, themed talks from artists and funders, Q&As, artist spotlights and regular sharing of artist opportunities. Themes include art and social change, accessibility, how to run and promote digital events, youth-led programming, art, self-care and wellbeing, evaluation, branding and sponsorship.
The Blueprint Collective have programmed 10 weeks of free online creative workshops for young people aged 18-25 across Brent. Workshops are led by socially engaged artists from across London and include zine making, photography, video editing, podcasting, vlogging and more.
Reggae exploded in Brent during the 1970s: the first festival of Caribbean music took place at Wembley, Bob Marley lived in Metroland, Janet Kay became the first British born black female artist to score a UK number one, and the iconic Willesden label Trojan Records introduced the world to reggae. With No Bass Like Home, Brent 2020 is celebrating Brent’s vital place in reggae history by asking the local community – DJs, musicians, shop owners, promoters and music lovers – to share their stories to create a new digital archive of interviews, images and resources documenting Brent’s music history for a new generation.