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The College of Saint Rose music industry program will chalk up another distinction thanks to a grant from the Les Paul Foundation.

Saint Rose will use the grant to purchase and install historic recording equipment in its recording studios and classes. The College will build three stations for analog mastering, reel-to-reel analog tape recording and a record cutting station that will enable students to cut their own vinyl albums. These historic processes have seen something of a renaissance in recent years, as vinyl in particular has increased in market share over the past decade.

Saint Rose is one of 11 diverse organizations nationwide, and the only college, to have received funding from the Les Paul Foundation this year.
“Les Paul changed music forever, and this grant will enable students in our renowned music industry program to create new and experimental recordings with some of the historical techniques that he pioneered. On behalf of the entire Saint Rose community, I extend our thanks and appreciation to the Les Paul Foundation for its generosity and its investment in our students now and for years to come,” said Saint Rose President Dr. Carolyn J. Stefanco.

“Many of the advancements in recorded music and the modern recording studio were discovered or championed by this great musician, engineer, producer and inventor who had a quest for a new sound that would alter the conventions of his time. To our knowledge, no other college music program is working with this medium. We are tremendously thankful to the Les Paul Foundation for its support and investment in the future leaders of the music industry,” said Sean McClowry, associate professor of music industry.

“Les Paul spent his life encouraging others to be innovative and created opportunities that made the world a better place,” said Michael Braunstein, executive director of the Les Paul Foundation. “The organizations that have received grants perpetuate many of his philosophies and ideas. He would be very proud that our grantees are continuing his legacy and perpetuating the mission of his very beloved foundation through their work.”

In 2016, Saint Rose hosted Les Paul’s Big Sound Experience, a 53-foot mobile interactive exhibit that took visitors behind the scenes and into the world of the music legend. Officials from the Les Paul Foundation stated that they selected Saint Rose as the tour’s Albany stop because of the renown of the College’s music industry program. Billboard magazine has named Saint Rose as home of one of the top music business programs in North America three times.

A centerpiece of the music industry program is Rose Record Label Group, a student-run record label devoted to producing, releasing and representing new music cultivated by creative students, alumni, faculty and members of the greater community.  It developed out of a class that brought together several aspects of the music industry, including music production, songwriting, performing and creative roles in the music business. Launched in 2015, Rose Record Label Group already has released five albums and has three Capital Region artists under management.