“It’s scary because it’s someone real and it’s not an assessment scenario”: An Interview with Vermilion Records 

If you endure the blistering wind tunnels of Musk Avenue and climb to the highest bloody level of the tallest bloody Z9 tower, what will you find? Some groovy cool cats who are working hard to make the wishes of music artists in the QUT community come true.

Vermilion Records is a not-for-profit, student-run record label based out of QUT. They represent young and emerging talent, as well as giving students who want to work in the music industry a steppingstone towards their career goals.  

I sat down with Jack and Lialize from Vermilion to chat about everything Vermilion and what they get up to.  

BEN: What does Vermilion do for music artists? 

LIALIZE: Facilitate? Help? I’m not too sure. A bit of everything. 

JACK: Yeah, we try to grow everything about artists, including their music and promotions, social media and everything. 

B: I’ve spoken to a few of your artists, like Day Off, and they ranted and raved about you guys. What is your little intro spiel into Vermilion? 

J:  Vermilion Records is a record label out of QUT. Right now, on our 2023 roster, we have eight artists. They range from pop, to folk, to indie to everything. We have a good mix of artists on our label. And pretty much what we do is we try and promote and facilitate our artists  across the year to to try and grow them. We record them, produce them. We also put on shows, like live events, so they can play. 

L: There are opportunities like music video, photo shoots as well. 

B: It’s kind of an odd little setup behind Vermilion. Because you guys are running Vermilion as a unit for uni? How does that work? 

L: I describe it as like your capstone project for your degree. The subject is called Situated Creative Practice. You can choose which project you want to spend your time with and we’ve both chosen Vermilion Records. There are other people at the label who are doing it as an internship or they’re doing it as part of a different subject. But we all come together, it’s become a really good community to be a part of. 

B: What are the staff behind the project like? The lecturers and tutors? 

L: We have one Project Coordinator. She’s absolutely lovely, and she’s very focused on it being student-run. So, while she provides assistance and can sometimes intervene with teacherly things like booking rooms and whatnot, she’s very much left it to us. And I think it’s kind of worked out. 

J: We also have mentors. So, one of our mentors Yanto, he’s awesome. There’s also a scheduled spot in the week where you can go to him and just talk to him about mixes on songs or anything to do with the artist. 

B: That’s so cool to be supported through this huge leap in responsibility. How does that feel? 

L: Someone else’s career is in your hands. 

J: I’m a manager for one of the artists on the label. It’s sort of like the whole start of my music career… It’s scary because it’s someone real and it’s not an assessment scenario. It is someone who wants to do music.  

L: I gotta say it is really easy to be motivated because the artists are so lovely and so talented. They’re also hardworking. There is not a single person who I don’t want to succeed. So, it is really easy to give it your all.  

B: So, the label normally represents students and alumni, but then it also said other local artists. Can anyone get involved with Vermilion as an artist? 

L: There’s a new intake of artists at the start of every year. If you’re interested, check it out at the start of the year. Because there’ll be another set of eight soon enough. And, yeah some of our artists aren’t involved with QUT at all. 

J: Every year that we get a bunch of auditions. I think this year we had around 30. We then sift through to find the artists who would get the most out of what Vermilion does. We picked out a set who we see potential in and  could really help throughout the year, in terms of growing as artists.  

B: So, what do the two of you do at Vermilion? 

L: I am one half of the live events team. So, our whole job is to organise the live events for our artists, organising solo gigs or our big showcases at The Brightside. 

J: And then I am an artist liaison for Glass Crow, so I represent them and produce music for them help them put their songs out there and stuff like that. 

B: What is your favourite thing about being part of Vermilion Records? 

L: The people are amazing. Meeting new people, I came from my technical production bubble, I’m not a music student, and it’s just expanded. My view of the uni and what it has to offer, and the music industry as well has completely expanded. And the people are so funny. They’re so hardworking and so talented. It’s ridiculous.  

J: Definitely! Listening to all the artists and what everyone has been working on… It’s so cool seeing that after all the hard work.  


If you want to hear the whole interview, I chatted to Lialize and Jack for the Talkerspace: Approved Extension podcast. Check it out here: 


Ben Steele
Ben Steele
Articles: 30

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