AudioActive mentor Crawley students through the power of Hip Hop

Brighton-based charity AudioActive has set up shop in Crawley college to help nurture the town’s young musical talent.

Local Hip Hop artists who double up as mentors for the scheme

The studio that is based in Crawley college, is fully equipped with the latest recording software and is run by two local recording artists.

Today (Tuesday, December 8) was meant to be their bi-weekly Cypher, but due to rain it couldn’t go ahead. Instead, we interviewed the two local artists, who double-up as mentors and the organiser of the scheme.

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Local boy Kieyan Chauhan and Hayward Heath based artist Ju5 Bones, who both mentor on the programme said: “The scheme started this term, brand new to Crawley college. It was fully funded and we were ready to move in, but it was delayed because of Covid-19.

“It’s not the only one we run in Crawley as we also work out of Dormans Youth Art Centre. People turn-up regularly every week. We work with a range of talented people including Drill artists to female vocalists.

“There aren’t really any venues in Crawley which holds the talent in this town back. Musicians end up going to Brighton or London. People used to come from Brighton or London to hear us.

“We run room to rant sessions with AudioActive, which are aimed at young men who are dealing with mental health issues. It’s positive to provide space for young men to meet, catch-up and spit some bars.

“This is a cool thing to happen to Crawley. I used to look at Brighton and wished it happened here.

“The scheme helps people to avoid gangs and knife crime. If they are with us they are safe and we try to be positive role models for the kids.

“The aim of the project is to bring out new stars and to show people it can be done.”

Jo Bates, the organiser of the scheme at Crawley College said: “It’s fantastic to see AudioActive branch out with a pop up in Crawley College and to let people know that we are here.

“We have been working in Crawley for a while now, but in schools. We want to increase our reach, support young people hidden away making music and help people make music together.

“The pop up is an experiment and we will see how it goes. We do cyphers, which is helping to build our programme and to reach as many people as possible.

“Using music for a tool of self expression, bringing joy into people’s lives and to make people feel good about themselves.

“We have a range of thirty mentors and offer one-to-one music mentoring programmes.”

If you want to get involved, head to https://audioactive.org.uk/ or just knock on the door of the pop up in Crawley College.