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Public Records offers up video grants to BC and Alberta residents [News/Interview]

Vancouver, BCPublic Records is a program that is giving back to the music community in a big way. $5,000 to be specific – towards the production of a music video – available to emerging artists in BC and Alberta. Dan Costello and Tony Yacowar are the co-founders of Public Records and with backgrounds in the music biz, they both recognize the support for up-and-coming artists out West is lacking…until now. Public Records was born and in collaboration with TELUS Optik™ Local they have a chance to give $5,000 video grants to musicians of any genre through this program. We had a moment to connect with these fellas to get the inside scoop on exactly what Public Records has to offer. Check out the Q&A with Dan and Tony after the jump.


HipHopCanada: What are your music backgrounds?

DAN: I’m a multi-instrumentalist and sound engineer. I’ve played in a lot of bands in Victoria and toured across the country a few times with various Victoria bands. The touring life never appealed to me and I’ve always been passionate about recording so I started an indie studio in our basement. I worked on a lot of albums from many different genres.

TONY: I’m a guitarist and songwriter. More recently I’ve worked for Boompa Records and helped them with their accounting and reporting to artists.

HipHopCanada: What lead you to create Public Records? 

TONY: We were frustrated about how music is such an integral part of our lives, but we find it so hard to make a living from it. It’s an interesting paradox. Also, we discovered that there is barely any financial support for emerging artists. Dan and I wanted to find a way to challenge this status quo and find unconventional ways to fund and support promising musicians from all genres who are undervalued by the traditional industry.

HipHopCanada: Who do you hope to see get involved and what is your overall vision for this program? 

DAN: Our overall vision is to cultivate a perfect music marketplace. Talented artists should be able to earn a living from their music, and we want to develop a model that cultivates that kind of environment.

TONY: Our first grant program is the Summer ’13 Music Video Fund, supported by TELUS Optik™ Local. It’s a series of grants of up to $5,000 and it’s available in 15 communities across BC and Alberta. We’re really excited because music videos can be a huge expense for emerging artists, but they’re also a great promotional tool and a great way for an artist to expand their following.

DAN: Our plan is to introduce more grant programs as the community grows and to help artists with every aspect of their development.

HipHopCanada: How can one get involved? 

DAN: We’re re-launching our website on April 26th, and interested musicians and filmmakers can create a profile on the site. Then on May 31st, we will be formally accepting submissions for the Summer ’13 Music Video Fund, supported by TELUS Optik Local. The deadline for submissions is June 14.

TONY: If you’re planning on applying, definitely start planning your music video now. Once you’ve created a profile in you can strike creative partnerships with other community members. For instance, if you’re a musician then you can connect with filmmakers on the site and vice versa. It’s best if you can figure out the creative treatment and budget early so you’re ready to apply before the June 14 deadline!

To create your profile and find more information please visit

Interview conducted by KassKills for HipHopCanada

Photograph by Christopher Guy for Public Records

Twitter: @publicrcrds

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Kassandra has her hands in several cookie jars. Born in Ontario but raised on the West coast, she is currently located in the wonderfully diverse East side of Vancouver. With a passion for all things creative KassKills is a hair stylist by day and HipHopCanada's West Coast Regional Editor by night. Music and public relations are her true passions and although she didn't inherit the talent of her musician father she makes her mark on the industry through other avenues. By night you can catch KassKills at almost every Vancity hip-hop show, shaking hands and snapping photos while covering and supporting the local music scene. On top of that she works closely with one of the cities most reputable concert promotors, Timbre Concerts. Kass is a hustler by nature and works hard to play a key role Vancity's hip-hop scene. Over the years she has seen, photographed and interviewed many of hip-hop's top artists such as T.I, Raekwon, Sheek Louch, Noreaga, Black Milk, Waka Flocka, Ab-Soul & Dizaster.

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