Kayleigh Pickworth: How Music Made Me

4th March 2022

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As part of our Music Made Us campaign, Kayleigh Pickworth from BIMM Institute Brighton, explains the influence of Brighton on her work. She also explores her desire to make underground music more accessible to a mainstream audience.

I have always been a very creative person, enjoying music, art and photography. Growing up, my parents would always play lots of music in many variations. This was anything from Jack White, Mumford and Sons, Neil Young, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, David Bowie, Avril Lavigne and more. I picked up the guitar when I was seven years old, but it wasn’t until I was about 14 when I decided that music was what I wanted to do. By this time, I had started developing my own taste in music. I found bands and artists such as Frank Iero, Palaye Royale, My Chemical Romance, Royal Blood, and more that inspired me to write and create my own music.

I have always loved Brighton. My family used to live down here but moved up to Lincolnshire when I was born. As some family stayed down here, we visited lots when I was growing up, which I always loved. As I developed more of a love for music, I began to love Brighton even more because of the brilliant music scene and fantastic culture. I always dreamed of being able to live in Brighton at some point.

Going forward, I would really like to see a wider variety of music styles and genres being shown to the general public. I feel like there is a lot of non-mainstream music that loads of people would love, but it is never presented to these people unless they go out of their way to look for it, and that’s even if they know what they’re looking for!

There is so much fantastic music out there, and I hope that the typical pop industry starts to/continues to incorporate more alternative styles and features. A recent artist, Yungblud, has become hugely popular in the last year or so after making his way into the mainstream despite his alternative persona and music. There are a few other recent examples, and I hope to see more of this.

I think being in the industry is more straightforward than I expected. Before getting into music and pursuing it, I always thought that if you wanted to be in the music industry, you had to be very talented but also very lucky. This is true, however, I never really considered other routes into the industry, which aren’t so much about being lucky. You can still be a musician within the industry and make a living without that. There are also so many career paths involved with the music industry that you may not immediately think of and then, upon discovering them, decide that is the route you want to take your career. I still aspire to be a musician who can make money from my own music; however, I now know of other various careers that would allow me to have a stable career in the music industry whilst I pursue my dreams.

Our Music Made Us campaign is told through the students, graduates, journalists, experts and passionate people who have been shaped by music. Discover their stories here.


BIMM University

BIMM University provides an extensive range of courses in modern music, performing arts, filmmaking, and creative technology to over 8,000 students across 14 schools in the UK, Ireland, and Germany. We have a long-standing commitment to providing the highest quality in creative industries education, allowing students to maximise their career potential in an inclusive community built on a culture of shared passion, creativity, and collaboration. Berlin | Birmingham | Brighton | Bristol | Dublin | Essex | London | Manchester