As the next step in a career that has already seen stints in some of the most legendary acts in alternative music (including NINE INCH NAILS, MINISTRY, KILLING JOKE, PIL and PIGFACE), drummer and music industry educator Martin Atkins has launched Revolution Number Three, a new music business school based in Chicago. Atkins' goal for the new institution is to offer a truer, more real-world perspective to the music education field, which he feels has far outlived its expiration date.
"Teaching at Columbia College Chicago since 2003, writing a textbook, developing the new marketing program and the indie label program, celebrating the 20th anniversary of my label, visiting around 80 arts and media management schools around the world… everything just seemed obvious," Atkins says. "There is a real problem in trying to teach in a rapidly changing field. First of all, unless you are in it, you have to wait for changes to be assimilated, documented and passed on. The possibilities for misinterpretation, editing and coloring by subjective opinions give this informational stream the validity of an overview of the economic climate by Paris Hilton. Even with the best of intentions, academia is an oil tanker — since it takes the average supertanker miles to make a turn. Entrepreneurial activity takes place on a speedboat, blindfolded, juggling live chickens, a chainsaw and two flaming strawberry Daiquiris… on a skateboard."
Atkins promises that students will get hands-on, real world experience at Revolution Number Three.
"I'm inviting everyone to have a role in this," he says. "Each class itself will be continually re-evaluated as we proceed. It's staggering to me that anyone anywhere is still offering classes in journalism. Where are the jobs? What's the point? At least here, one of the things we will be looking at are the possibilities of multi-disciplinary cross pollination. For instance, my last label manager worked on the Obama campaign and is now involved in the mayoral race in Pittsburgh. We'll be further analyzing and incubating those possibilities."
The first set of Revolution Number Three students will have the opportunity to build a studio, create sounds for a new drum library with Drum Core, book shows, edit video, coordinate the publishing of a book, explore the origins of dub and experience other non-traditional areas of music industry education.
Atkins' 2007 music industry textbook, "Tour: Smart", featured contribution from 100+ music industry luminaries including Henry Rollins, Steve Albini, Warped Tour mastermind Kevin Lyman and members of the Suicide Girls. Atkins' latest album with PIGFACE, "6", was recently released by Full Effect Records.
Revolution Number Three's first two five-week sessions will begin on June 29 and July 27, respectively.
Gausten Books, the book publishing company headed by one-time PIGFACE performer and "Tour: Smart" contributing editor/writer Joel Gausten, is currently offering special $500 discounts off both Revolution Number Three session to anyone who orders any of the company's titles through Lulu.com.
"Gausten Books is proud to join forces with Martin in giving the educational system the jolt of modern-day reality it so desperately needs," offers Gausten. "From playing alongside him in PIGFACE to seeing him take an idea of a textbook and turn it into a No. 1 hit on Amazon, I've seen this guy's work ethic up close and personal, and he's the ideal guy to give students the real deal in a consistently unreal industry."
In addition to spreading the word on Revolution Three, Atkins and Gausten are both slated to make guest appearances on the upcoming debut album by EFFECTIONHATE, the new project by electronic experimentalist Shannon Gardner.
For further enrollment details and other information, go to this location.