It’s a long way to the top

With the music business continuing to thrive and competition heating up, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to get noticed. Alexandra Foxley Johnson and Josh Davie are two local musicians hoping to break into the music business. They’re not only students at the University of Lincoln, but they have also made their mark in the music industry, with some very positive results.

Johnson is a first year journalism student and describes her musical inspiration as artists such as Florence and the Machine and Imogen Heap. She currently performs all over the city, including Kind Bar and the Jolly Brewer, and hopes to get more gigs in the future.


Student Alexandra Foxley Johnson hopes to get her big break in to the music industry. Photo: Alex Foxley Johnson

“I write and play a lot of different music, a lot of it is alternative and something a bit different,” she said. But singing isn’t a new talent of Johnson’s and before coming to Lincoln she performed for many people in her home town of Chesterfield.

“When I was back home over summer I played a lot of gigs, some which I was asked to do for weddings and birthdays. It gave me the confidence to go out there and approach people in Lincoln.”

Johnson regularly plays at a number of open mic nights and events like this have encouraged her to visit more.

“I recently played a bigger set at Kind Bar, I played a couple of covers and a lot of people seemed to receive it quite well.”

She spoke about the support she had already received from the general public. “They talk to you about your music and you get encouraged by them to go further. They appreciate the amount of work and effort you put into it which is the most important thing about being a solo singer.”

Josh Davie is a first year history student at the university and his talents haven’t gone unnoticed. Davie is another solo singer and through his open mic nights at bars and clubs he has been recognised by music fans across the county.

He says he found getting noticed in a new city difficult after moving to Lincoln in September. He approached similar bars and clubs and performed across Lincoln, but his big break was on the radio with BBC Introducing earlier this year after he sent a demo CD into BBC Radio Lincolnshire. “It was hard to get noticed at first but since appearing on BBC introducing I have had great feedback and hopefully I’ll be back on the show soon.”

But just how difficult is it for young musicians who want to get noticed in Lincoln and what is available to them? Ben Deyn helped organise Kind Bar’s Couleur night, a popular event dedicated to help young bands and singers perform on stage in front of an large audience.

“Couleur has been a massive help to bands across Lincoln as suddenly there is a new venue for them to play at, one that’s right in the centre of town and one with credibility. Due to Kind’s intimate feel, the band’s can really connect with the crowd in a way that never seemed possible anymore.” They have had a huge role in the success of bands who have left Kind and gone to play across the county and the event has proven popular. “The event has been very successful so far, and even though it’s on a completely new night, we draw in crowds from across the evening which makes all the organising worthwhile.”

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