Graduates and alumni of the CICAS® programme continue to work with MMC under this project, enabling us to strengthen ties between emerging new talent and more established entrepreneurs, as well as encouraging our professional music industry contacts to collaborate with artists on commercial ventures.
Edward Wakili-Hick photo

Edward Wakili-Hick

Edward Wakili-Hick is a drummer and producer based in London. Born and raised in York, and of Nigerian and English parentage, he studied at Leeds College of Music (LCM) before moving to London in 2009. During his studies he joined the Tomorrow’s Warriors mentorship programme which led to him playing in their flagship bands, Jazz Jamaica and the Nu Civilisation Orchestra.

After moving to London, he was invited to Midi Music Company to jam with the 12 Tone Brass Band, where he first met Yussef Dayes and Ahnanse (Wayne Francis), amongst other great musicians. Having family links to Deptford and surrounding areas led to Wakili-Hick eventually moving to the area. He attended various courses and workshops at Midi as a CICAS member as well as making use of the drum room and holding drum sheds there.

Wakili-Hick was an original member of the London born artist collective, Steam Down. In 2017 he joined Sons of Kemet, recording on tracks such as ‘My Queen is Harriet Tubman’ from their Mercury nominated album ‘Your Queen is a Reptile,’ released on Impulse records. In 2021 they released another critically acclaimed album ‘Black to the Future‘.

With a career spanning well over a decade Edward has toured and recorded with artists, bands and producers including Angelique Kidjo, Alicia Keys, Lianne La Havas, Horace Andy, Dawn Penn, Freddie McGregor, D Double E, Pharoahe Monche, Congo Natty, Roots Manuva, Kokoroko, Mo Kolours and Mark Ronson.

Wakili-Hick has led his own bands, performing at London Jazz Festival, Ronnie Scott’s and Jazz Refreshed. A project he started more recently, Nok Cultural Ensemble, are due to release a record in 2022.

Edward also produced and played on Marcus Joseph’s debut album ‘Beyond the Dome’, released on Jazz Refreshed. It features London Jazz luminaries Sheila Maurice-Grey (Kokoroko), Nathaniel Cross (Moses Boyd Exodus), Ife Ogunjobi (Ezra Collective), Theon Cross (Sons of Kemet) and Tony Kofi.

Jesse James Macfarlane

Jesse James Macfarlane

Jesse James is a songwriter, producer and multi-instrumentalist. His latest project is a 6-piece reggae band is called The Wise Bloods, which he runs independently from his label Urban Breakout Records. As a self-releasing artist, his work spans songwriting, production and performance across to visual and web design, band management and online advertising.

Following the release of debut singles ‘Turn The Tide’ and ‘New Blood’,  The Wise Bloods began to receive receive radio play (David Rodigan, BBC 1xtra, Sarah C Vibes Fm, Ras Kwame Capital Xtra, etc) and international recognition across the reggae community (IRIE, Reggaeville magazines).

The Wise Bloods continue to grow their followings internationally and have seen increased success since the release of their latest EP ‘Let Me Love’, described by David Rodigan on his BBC 1Xtra show as ‘very impressive’.

Get social with The Wise Bloods

Listen to Jesse James’ CICAS® 2018 podcast interview on SoundCloud

Fiona ‘Figi’ Burton


Inspired and encouraged by her time at The Midi Music Company as a 19 year old student, Fiona enjoyed a career since the early 90’s, including collaborations with Equilibrium, The Rose Garden Productions with Producer Trevor Rose, Producer and world-class engineer Paul Gomersall alongside Mike and the Mechanics, The Next Room Productions and dance tracks with E.M.I.’s C.E.O, Didier Guinochet.

Within her time at MMC, Fiona has also enjoyed working at Sony Records and Columbia Records, gaining guidance and experience in commercial music and release. She co-formed Stamp Records in 1999 with Richard Burton and DJ Klasse, having success on dance and commercial radio with London Massive and enjoyed an Aya Napa residency.

Fiona also penned songs and performed as London Figi, currently working with The Head Chefs on the track Dirty Deal, and on a podcast play Sounds De La Boheme, due for release via the BBC. She was working with past collaborators Paul Gomersall and Richard Burton as The Three Amigo’s.

Sadly, Fiona passed away on the 12th September 2021. She will be very missed by all at The Midi Music Company.

Daniel Smithson

Daniel also teaches drums and percussion in three London secondary schools and at WAC Arts. He has studied drumming with the likes of Rod Youngs, Troy Miller, Andrew Small, Steve Brown, Graham Fox, Courtney Daniels and in 2011 completed a music degree at the London Centre of Contemporary Music and has a Grade 8 drums certificate from Trinity Rock and Pop.

Get Social with Daniel Smithson


Rebekah Reid

Rebekah has taken her solo live loop pedal set across the UK; with performances at the Portico Library in Manchester, supporting Matana Roberts and Kelly Jayne Jones, Manchester Art Gallery for Sofar Sounds, and the Royal Albert Hall – the Elgar Room in March 2019 supporting Roxanne Tattei. Alongside solo performing, Rebekah tours extensively with orchestras, chamber groups and jazz ensembles across the UK and internationally. She’s performed on the BBC Proms with the Chineke Orchestra (2017 and 2019), played on recordings for DJ Spoony and NAO, and featured in music videos for Celeste, Oscar Jerome and Steam Down.

Rebekah also leads and manages Täpp – a loop pedal music collective featuring collaborations with musicians from London and Manchester. Täpp have appeared on NTS, Worldwide FM, BBC Introducing and BBC 1Xtra.

Get Social with Rebekah Reid



Barbarella is an Italian-English singer-songwriter, dancer and music producer based in London.

She is the founder, lead vocalist and primary songwriter of the band Barbarella’s Bang Bang, formed in South East London in 2011. Their debut album, released on Kanuga Records in 2014, led to tours in Europe, UK and a deal in Japan with Uncle Owen Music. Further singles include Surgery (2017) , Cowboy Job (2018), Grudge (2020) and Learn to Unlearn (2021).

In 2017 Barbarella began a music production internship at The Midi Music Company, where she developed her skills as a producer and bass player, writing songs for her upcoming solo project.

In 2019 she met producer and former Faithless guitarist Dave Randall, who invited her to contribute lead vocals for his collective SLOVO. Together they released the album Bread & Butterflies in 2020, which she considers an uplifting, intense, fierce and healing music masterpiece. She also worked with Brixton grime artist CHOZE whose energy, lyrics and music have motivated and inspired her creative mind.

Barbarella is passionate about working on art collaborations which allow her to explore her voice and movement. She has created experimental sound and performance on visual art projects with multidisciplinary artists Celia Arias (Triformis, 2020), Maria Almena from Kimatica Studio (Transcendence, 2018) and Sybilla Bam Bam (Magic Mirror, 2019). “I am grateful to be surrounded by talented friends who have inspired and helped me to create my identity as an artist. I am who I am because of you.

In life you only come across a few artists that inspire you to do way more than better. Barbarella is one of them. The world is in for more than a treat when they witness her musical talent and artistry. There is only one Barbarella.”  CHOZE

Barbarella is an extraordinarily talented singer and artist. She is also one of the most gracious and likeable people I have ever had the pleasure of working with.
Dave Randall (Faithless / Slovo).

Get social with Barbarella


Laura Lamn

Laura is a musician, poet, artist, dancer, writer and adventurous spirit. She is an unstoppable whirlwind of creativity, who is dedicated and devoted to the upliftment of others.

Her graceful folk-inspired pop music tells an inspiring story. An episode of painful events sent Laura spiralling into a break down, which lead to a dark depression. During her recovery Laurataught herself to play guitar. She started writing intimate acoustic songs to comfort and heal herself. These songs became her debut album titled LOVE ALWAYS WINS, which is out now!

Laura is passionate about human health and happiness. She has been on a radical healing journey following illness. It has lead her down a yellow brick road of transformational experiences including; ice water therapy in the Netherlands with Wim Hof, drinking Amazonian jungle medicine Ayahuasca 30 times, and rediscovering her connection with nature with wild swimming.

Her video blogs on Youtube about alternative healing methods and wild swimming have amassed over 185,000 views and counting!

Get social with Laura Lamn



Creative expressionist, performing artist ​& empowerment blogger, Antiqu’e is also known as #missvintagetwang, a South London creative born to a Ghanaian father and Liverpudlian mother.

Singer, songwriter and voetry artist Antiqu’e likes to push boundaries and create new vibrational soundscapes, dubbing her sound Vintagetwang. She describes this vibe as “transcending to a place where the human soul dwells, delicately powerful, traditional yet modern, topped with a sprinkle of spoken word magic”.

Much of her work stems from personal transformation and rebirth through self discovery. Antiqu’e now embraces her authenticity. This powerful female is armed with a microphone and a portfolio expanding to the likes of BFI South Bank, Brixton Splash, The BBC, The Ministry of Justice, Iluvlive, The Independent and York Press. Including performances for The Women’s Institute, Prince Edward Earl of Wessex, The Mayor of London and Represent Radio to name just a few.

“Join me on my new journey – as I express my past, create my future and live life as a present”.

Get social with Antiqu’e

Creative growth and development services:

Nicole Elizabeth

Hailing from the landscapes of South East London, singer, music producer and DJ, ’S T A R S’ is a unique artist that brings you to a whole new musical spectrum.

With a self-produced debut album already under her belt, ’S T A R S’ provides an inventive aura that makes her distinctive and completely unique. Her recent music video collaboration with Berlin based artist Steffen Heil proves that she is a multifaceted artist to be reckoned with.

Get social with S T A R S

Apple Music

Amy Fitz Doyley

Amy Fitz Doyley is a one woman army, bringing beats, bass and soulful melodies to every electrifying performance.

Just last year Amy staged and funded her own mini-Brexit and USA solo tour, taking with her an ambition to use art to dissolve borders, whilst aiming for an authentic and worthwhile devising and performing experience. If you were there, you will have seen that in concert, her main weapons of choice are; the Korg Electribe [Ableton Live 9] Music Production Station, Fender Squier Bronco Bass, TC Helicon vocal station, an antique wooden winding music box and magical chime bars.

Motivated by the desire to hone her creative songwriting and composing skills, Amy is working on a debut ‘body of work’ to be released on her own record label and shared with international audiences in times to come.

Riccardo Albini-Trissino

Kanuga Records / Facebook

Riccardo grew up in Italy and then moved to London in 2004 to study Music, graduating in 2011 with a BMus from Goldsmiths College. Throughout his time in London as a musician, Riccardo has taken part in many performances, including shows at the Barbican, the Royal Festival Hall and Glastonbury Festival. He has worked with established artists such as Eska Mtungwazi, Matthew Herbert and the Italian band Casino Royale.

Riccardo has been involved in a diverse variety of projects as a bass player, spanning genres such as Reggae, Alternative Rock, Afro, Pop and Electronic. At present, he’s the bass player for the Rocksteady/Ska band The Bluebeaters and continues his long time collaboration with singer/songwriter Harry Jay-Steele.

Ciara Vizzard

Facebook / Instagram / SoundCloud

Ciara Vizzard is a singer songwriter with a pop/melodic, soul twist. With Irish and American roots, her music tells a story of human interaction, which touches on the nuances of relationships and the emotions that drive us. Writing songs since a young age, Ciara has only really developed her songwriting and singing since her late teens. Currently active on the live music scene, Ciara is also working on the release of new music, following the release of her debut EP ‘Fearless’ in 2018. She’ll break your heart and then mend it.

Ciara’s industry memberships include the Performing Right Society (PRS) and the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA).

Frederik Nielsen

Frhetoric Ltd / Rosen

Frederik Nielsen, aka Frhetoric, was kicked out of secondary school for writing obscene lyrics and failed music class in college. He has since gone on to write, compose, engineer, perform, market and distribute three albums and four EPs, both as a solo artist and as part of other bands (most recently, Rosen).

In addition to music, Frederik has also directed, edited and acted in music, corporate and comedy videos. He has also interviewed a long list of independent artists, notably in the MMC monthly CICAS® podcast interviews.

Frederik is 100 percent autodidact and loves challenging received wisdom. His most recent project Frhetoric Ltd is a creative agency that focuses on copywriting, music and video production.

Get social with Frederik

FrhetoricFacebook / Instagram / Twitter
RosenFacebook / Instagram / Twitter

Leah Vee

Set The Flow

Leah Vee, aka Veronica Youdell, began facilitating music workshops in 2007 using her vast experience as a music artist and her passion for working with young people.

Leah’s interest in music and performing arts began at an early age, taking regular classes at Sylvia Young and performing in shows with youth theatre groups.  After completing a HND in Popular Music and Performing Arts she began to create and record her own material working with music producers and regularly performed at night clubs as a freestyle vocalist and MC. 

She was introduced to the style of Hipopera theatre whilst working on projects with The Roundhouse and The London Urban Collective. Both projects gave her the opportunity to write her own lyrics for her character role and perform at The Roundhouse, Pleasance Theatre and Bloomsbury Theatre in London. This lead to her being cast the lead role in a short film and music video that explored gender discrimination and human rights. The film was produced by Company of Angels and was shown to young people in schools across the country.

Shannon Ho – Creative Media Personnel / Music Project Manager and Coordinator

H2drOp / LinkedIn

Shannon Ho has over ten years of working experience in the Creative Media Industries. She started her career in TV production in her hometown of Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, assisting in filming and commercial projects. Her career developed into the classical music business, where she has seven years of International orchestra management experience, including three years being the Orchestra Personnel Manager of the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.

Her drive for progression inspired her move to London where she was recently awarded Distinction for her Master’s Degree in Creative Media Industries – Cultural Management at the London South Bank University. During her studies, she had the opportunity for her placement at the renowned artists’ management company, IMG Artists, and also worked independently with musicians in developing music projects. These projects include, commissioning new music for a Charlie Chaplin film, conducting a research performance with an experimental musician H2drOp, and coordinating an ensemble orchestra for a concert at the London Coliseum.She has vast contacts in classical music industry in Europe, America and Asia.

Mic Assassin


Musician, Entrepreneur, Director and Lover of life are the words, which most astutely describe our street, savvy South Londoner, Mic Assassin. Being disheartened and disillusioned with the politics of the music industry, his time away from music was productively spent setting up entrepreneurial ventures including an independent video production company ‘FWD360’ under which Mic directed & edited over a100 projects for global brands, charities and many grass roots organisations and independent music artists.

Jenni Steele – Lioness Ladies – Jenni Steele Foundation

Website / Radio Show

MMC’s ARCO Music Media graduate Jenni Steele was honoured in 2013 as one of the top twelve influential Afro Caribbean Women in the UK. She created a radio show to motivate, inspire, and celebrate local heroes and ‘sheroes.’ In 2009 she founded Lioness Ladies Network Dinner to support women from all walks of life. Jenni believes that women are as lionesses, head of many families, and hold the key to their success. The Jenni Steele Foundation is an organisation dedicated to creating opportunities and a support network for the next generation of leaders.

Chris Redmond – Tongue Fu

Tongue Fu Website

Tongue Fu is one of the UK’s leading spoken word shows. Poets, storytellers, rappers and comedians perform with improvised soundtracks by the genre hopping Tongue Fu Band (Nostalgia 77, Jamie Cullum, Beardyman) and films by East London design studio CR&D. Created and hosted by poet Chris Redmond (Scroobius Pip’s Beatdown XFM / Pick Of The Week – BBC R4)  “It’s poetry, but not as you know it … amazing’ The Guardian

Shaka Lish – Dancer Vocalist

Listen to her releases here

MMC’s ARCO Music Media graduate Shaka Lish is UK singer/songwriter, vocal producer and DJ. Shaka is soulful, reflective and melodic, her songs speaking of female strength and determination, whilst also encompassing feminine vulnerability and sensitivity. Her material draws on personal experience and reflects a broad range of influences; London street culture, French poetry, popular sub-genres and the natural world. Performing either acoustically or with a full band, Shaka has gained respect and a reputation for being an exciting performer, appearing in the UK and abroad. Current releases include: Superwoman (2014) – single with Spanish producer Deenk, Learning To Fly (2014) – debut album Meant To Be (2013) – single with Dan Spartacus and Noise DJ I’m Calling (2013)
Shaka DJs at prestigious venues and events, playing a mixture of her favourite genres including RnB, Dance, Funk/Soul, House, and Reggae

DJ Steve Strawberry – Whats on What’s Up Magazine

DJ Steve Strawberry on RA

MMC’s ARCO Music Media graduate and much talked-about figure on London’s resurgent techno scene, Steve Strawberry is one of the most passionate and talented young jocks on the circuit. Promoter and resident of Tilted Disco, and resident for the capital’s hottest new techno party Closer, his enthusiasm for the genre and skill on the decks is winning him admirers far and wide. Taking his name from his formerly voracious appetite for strawberry blotter tabs – and indeed his enduring love of Roland 303s and their seminal acid sound – his nom de plume is as memorable as his tough, groovy sound.

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