FAU has seen its fair trials and tribulations in a ridiculously short amount of time. From becoming a laughing stock for its stadium sponsoring by a prison, getting sued by a former student and a suspension issued for not participating in a class exercise, it’s difficult to remember all the good the Boca college has done. Aside from its highly accredited and outstanding business curriculum, FAU has a student run and faculty supervised recording studio that allow student musicians to sharpen their skills and be one step closer to their dream. Singers such as Mandy Moon, Alex of couple duo Alex & Sierra and The Pathetique have all emerged as well as contributed to former albums. In fact, this Friday’s campus festivity is a celebration of the fourth CompOWLAtion album. I talked to senior and president Matt Smith and chatted about his experience as president, why this album is the best, and the bittersweet event for him on Friday.
Tell us about the campus release party.
Matt Smith: The campus release party will be in the on-campus bar and grill “The Burrow” and will begin at 3:30pm and will feature three extremely talented bands. Fuzzhound, Smith Sundy, and Beauty to the Moon will all perform. We will have a table with a laptop set up where can people can purchase their copies of CompOWLAtion vol. 4 and students who use the code “owl” will receive a 50% discount so that the album is only $3.50.
How is this CompOWLAtion different than the others?
This album is different mainly because we do not have to recoupe any expenses. We raised the money it took to produce the whole album last semester in our crowd funding campaign. So, we did not set out to create an album that is made to appeal to the masses. We set out to make what we feel is the best album that we could possibly make. The sole purpose of this album is to get local music heard by as many people as possible. While that has always been a mission of ours it has felt like it has taken a back seat to our mission of higher sales for more scholarship money in the past. But now the focus is not on scholarships or how many sales we can brag about. The mission is to get the music heard. Going into this we told each manager to tell their artist this exact phrase “help me, help you, help us” This is a phrase a few of us have heard from wiser individuals before that applies to the music industry perfectly. It applies to us perfectly because while one of our top priorities is helping these artists grow their brands they are simultaneously helping us grow as promoters, managers, and professionals overall.
Where are the proceeds going?
100% of the proceeds will go directly into the pockets of the immensely talented students that make up Hoot/Wisdom Recordings via a scholarship fund with the school.
How long have you been president for?
I have been President of Hoot/Wisdom Recordings since August of 2013.
How does it feel knowing that it’s your last CompOWLAtion because you are a senior?
It’s hard to explain. I have such an immense amount of pride in the work we have all been able to accomplish not just this semester but since 2010 when I first joined Hoot/Wisdom as an undeclared major freshman. This label has grown in so many ways and I’m so proud of everyone who was a part of it and genuinely honored that I get to be the leader of such a unique group of people. SO, I feel excited for people to hear what I think is our finest product yet and I am excited to know that a lot of people are going to listen to some fantastic local music…however I can’t help but get a little sentimental as well of course. Hoot/Wisdom has taken up such an immense amount of my time and effort and blood, sweat, and tears. So, of course I’ll miss it some. I’ll miss having a room full of some of the most talented people in the state looking at me waiting to find out what we’re doing next. And I’ll miss setting up shows with a bunch of amazing bands just for the sake having a great time. But all in all I feel proud.
Any plans as a graduate?
My plans after graduation are a little up in the air for now. I’m going to continue to pursue a career in music around South Florida. I’ve interned in PR before and I think there are plenty of career opportunities for that down here. But, I know there is a very decent chance that I will move to LA or NYC. I have a few different opportunities that I plan on looking into and we’ll see where going the extra mile takes me.
Any additional comments?
My last comment is that I hope people appreciate this album for what it is. It is an honest display of FAU students’ creativity. It is brutally honest and real. There isn’t a single song on here that was created in order to emulate anyone else or sound like something we aren’t. This music isn’t for critics, or the radio, or MTV. It’s for those who are interested in what real unaltered creativity sounds like. It was made for people who love all kinds of music for what it is: humanly aestheticized sound. This album is for the people who have countless playlists for every imaginable daily activity or life event, the people who (at least try to) sing harmonies with all the pop tunes on the radio, for those who comment on a movie’s soundtrack just as enthusiastically as the acting or special effects, and for those who sometimes just HAVE to hear a certain song at a random time. This album was made for music lovers.
3:00 p.m. Friday, March 13, at the Burrow. 777 Glades Road, Boca Raton. No cover. Visit Facebook.