The Academy of Music and Business is not a something new. The school has actually always been there, in the world of ideas if nowhere else, an affirmation, as an idea for the future which finally became reality. Back in summer 1985, Andreas Carlsson took his first uncertain steps in the world of music at a summer camp with Magnus Lundin in Tingsryd. As a young musician Andreas then experienced what it was like to work in a studio writing songs, and above all the value of a committed music teacher who saw his students as equals, in whom he invested his time, passion, heart and soul.
The magical summer days with Magnus and his fiery enthusiasm had such an effect on the then 12-year-old Andreas that it would change his life forever, and later carry him to the dizzy heights of the music business. Magnus Lundin, who had arrived in Tingsryd the previous year with some instruments thrown into the back of his estate car, which was his mobile classroom, also had a bright future ahead of him, and soon turned the little community on its head; in particular through the Aktiv Musik project and the cultural workshop he himself started. It still thrives, and today involves more than 500 pupils and employs 22 teachers.
”I’d say that the entire foundation for my music career came from my time with Magnus Lundin,” says Andreas Carlsson about his former mentor.
“His educational methodology is based on mutual respect and a commitment to his students that I had never seen before. I have always felt fortunate to have been given the opportunity of the music education that Magnus provided. When the chance came to in some way spread that energy in combination with my own knowledge of the business at the international level, I felt that we simply had to do this together.”
When close friends Magnus and Andreas met back at square one, at the very place they first met, it actually felt natural.
”Tingsryd is a community in beautiful surroundings, which in addition is well placed geographically. For example, you can be in Copenhagen within 2 hours. I always feel like am coming home when my feet touch the ground in Småland. And the local council has participated wholeheartedly in the project, which was the crucial factor that led to me and Magnus daring to launch the school in Tingsryd in particular.”
Andreas also wants it to clearly reflect his own approach to music.
“As a school, we want the Academy of Music and Business to be a direct extension of my and Magnus’s philosophy of life – which is very brief and to the point – culture is vital. I owe everything to my music. It has given me the opportunity to see the world, to realise my potential and it has always made my work feel inspirational and enjoyable.”
He chuckles and confesses.
”Sure – both Magnus and I work hard, but we feel that we are working with something we see as our calling. We very much want our students here at AMB to have the same passion and the same drive. For our part we will see to it that they leave school with the tools they need to be able to commercialise their ideas. It is our goal that no student shall leave school as for example an accomplished guitarist and have no idea how to package his or her brand.
“The Academy of Music and Business is a school that is already living in the future, not philosophising about it.”
He is referring to an industry that has been through an economic meltdown in the last 10 years. Music, as he puts it, has ended taken the back seat in digital development and it has drastically reduced the money-earning potential of the music industry. Andreas says that the only way for the industry to find possible revenues is through new, innovative ideas and thorough knowledge of marketing, brand building and intellectual property rights. In the future, music will be the wheel that drives advertising. And advertising drives music. New actors who have never worked with music will completely take over the industry and replace from the old recording companies that once existed. It is already happening.
”Our numerous speakers who are familiar with the industry and who will make annual visits to the school are a guarantee that the school stays relevant to real conditions in working life. The step into working life should not feel very different from the start of a new term. In addition, I want our students to have knowledge, not just about how the music market looks, but also the knowledge and the innovative ability needed to change it. The Academy of Music and Business does not operate along ready staked out paths – what we want is to drive culture and music into tomorrow.”
Magnus and Andreas feel that having student accommodation so close enables a freer approach to school attendance. The school day does not need to end at 4 o’clock, when it has hardly begun. The Academy of Music and Business is as much a philosophy of life as a seat of learning.
Or as Andreas himself puts it:
”Magnus taught me a lot about music, but perhaps most about making use of the potential I had within me. To succeed in music is largely about self-insight and about a never wavering belief in yourself.