Interview with DnB DJ/Producer Michael Unwin AKA Niwun
18th October 2012
Niwun is a drum'n'bass producer/DJ from Perth. The man behind the name is Michael Unwin, a graduate of both the Certificate III in Music and the Diploma Of Sound Production at SAE. We caught up with him to find out what he's been up to.
Can you tell us a bit about what you studied at SAE? I took the Electronic Music Production (EMP) course, and it really sparked my interest in and a passion for everything associated with producing electronic music. My favourite part of this course was presenting my final assignment. We chose a genre and covered its history, evolution, and production methods. We selected an example and interviewed the producer(s) who made it, discussed their production methods and their outlook on the music industry. Around six months after completing the EMP course I decided to leave full-time work and pursue a postgraduate Diploma in Sound Production. My favourite part of the Diploma was the practical assignments. Up until that point I had only really used software but each assignment for the Diploma was on a different piece of hardware, and it also usually involved doing some sort of acoustic or vocal recording.
What have you been up to since leaving SAE/Qantm? I'm currently working as a Digital Arts Officer at the City of Swan where I plan artistic exhibitions and events with a digital theme. I also work on a casual basis at the ABC, as a technician on local radio where I assist with broadcasting sporting events, namely AFL, WAFL and cricket. Aside from this I have just signed two tracks to UK-based independent record label Ruin Me Records.
How would you say that your time at SAE/aantm helped to prepare you for this? As a technician I use my knowledge of how to operate hardware and the principles involved in processing audio that I learnt at SAE Institute to its fullest. This same knowledge has also helped me get closer to a higher standard of production, which I constantly strive for.
Tell us about one of your favourite career highlights? Signing my first track was definitely a milestone, while hearing my music played in Shape Nightclub, and at the Velvet Lounge was absolutely awesome. Spending an AFL match at the stadium in a corporate box while broadcasting was also great.
What are your plans for the future? Work hard; I'd like to be able to complete a four or five track EP or at least release a couple more singles by the end of 2012 or the start of 2013. I'd also like to be able to play some shows eventually. I'd like to keep working in a Digital Arts role; it's something that I really enjoy.
What advice would you give to SAE/Qantm students starting out in the Industry? Get yourself out there and be proactive, meet people, call people and make connections. Have an Internet presence and maximize your potential for making useful connections online.
How can we find you? Clips of my two forthcoming releases are available on Ruin Me Record's Soundcloud page, and you can find more information about me on their website. You can always check out my Soundcloud, I'm regularly putting up material soundcloud.com/niwun.