Meet: Alan Gubby
Alan Gubby studied BA (Hons) Digital Media Production at London College of Communication, graduating in 2008. He teaches media and film studies, but has also set up his own record label, Buried Treasure…
What were you doing before UAL? What made you want to study at London College of Communication?
I was a music producer for several electronic and jazz music labels and also working as a part time music lecturer. I couldn’t progress further in my teaching career without a relevant degree. Because of the massive growth in the internet in the 2000s I decided to focus on digital media production and UAL / LCC was highly recommended, plus perfectly located in terms of industry and creativity.
Did you enjoy your time at LCC? What were your biggest challenges/achievements?
I found the academic environment inspiring and the resources at LCC were perfect, either using Apple Macs for design work or the library archives for endless research opportunities.
My biggest challenge was going through a divorce during my studies, but UAL was very understanding and supportive whilst I got my personal affairs in order. I had to work hard for my degree and got a 2:1, but my lecturers were understanding and supportive wherever they could be.
What have you been doing since? What advice would you give to UAL graduates wanting to find work in music?
After graduating in 2008 I went on to do a PGCE at Reading University and have been teaching media and film studies ever since.
I also set up the Buried Treasure label and have been releasing music by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop and other experimental electronic, folk and psychedelic sounds from the 1960’s and 1970’s.
My advice to students would be to soak up everything! Utterly absorb yourself in the university environment, go to as many lectures as possible, even ones not directly related to your course (if you are allowed). Make as many friends and contacts as possible because these people will help you throughout your future career and vice versa.
What are you working on now? And do you have any future projects in the pipeline
I’ve been writing a screenplay for a psychological thriller loosely based on the lives of Delia Derbyshire and John Baker, two hugely influential British electronic musicians. I’m putting on a musical version of the story at South Street Arts centre in Reading on November 14th. There are lots of performers involved including Pete Wiggs from Saint Etienne and Jonny Trunk. It’s pretty cosmic visually due to the occult 1960s subject matter. You can get tickets here. I’m also about to release an album by The Dandelion Set featuring cult writer / graphic novelist Alan Moore who wrote V For Vendetta, The Watchmen and so much more.
What inspires you?
Musically I love film soundtracks that combine different disciplines and technology in unusual or inventive ways. Classical, folk, electronic, rock. It can be anything really and literally by anyone as long as there is something unique, emotional or boundary-pushing within it. In terms of the writing and research I do when compiling records I’m a bit of a revisionist. Often the official or accepted version of events is only one person’s version – writing sleeve notes allows the chance to present a different point of view and helps people make their own minds up.