The University of Mobile announces the launch of its new record label, 8Eighty Records. The first release, a live worship album recorded on campus at the university, is available through 8EightyRecords.com and available through iTunes on Sept. …
The University of Mobile announces the launch of its new record label, 8Eighty Records. The first release, a live worship album recorded on campus at the university, is available through 8EightyRecords.com and available through iTunes on Sept. 17.
The publishing arm of the label, University of Mobile Publishing, is developing a catalog of original songs written by students and alumni. 8Eighty Records General Manager Jeff Quimby said establishing its own recording label was the next logical step for the university’s Center for Performing Arts/School of Music and School of Worship Leadership, whose alumni include Christian music artists such as Chris Lockwood of 33 Miles and the group Big Daddy Weave.
University connections include Dove Award recipients Kenn Hughes, assistant professor of music and director of instrumental studies, and UMobile alumnus Steven V. Taylor, a Nashville producer and UMobile guest lecturer.
“We are developing talented Christian artists and worship leaders as students and we were looking for opportunities to develop them beyond graduation,” Quimby said.
UMobile graduates are performing at churches and other venues throughout the region as solo artists and in groups including male vocal group Veritas.
Quimby also serves as director of A&R (artists and repertoire) and will be scouting talent, producing, arranging recording sessions and signing new artists. He brings extensive experience to the project as a former A&R Manager at Integrity Music. He has worked with such artists as Lincoln Brewster, Kari Jobe, Desperation Band, Michael Gungor, Jared Anderson, Nicole Nordeman, Margaret Becker and many more.
As A&R for Integrity Music, his efforts led to the creation of albums that garnered sales, critical acclaim, Dove Award nominations and Christian radio hits including the No. 1 AC single “Everlasting God” from Lincoln Brewster.
The university’s move into the recording label business is part of a new academic program in the School of Worship Leadership. Students may concentrate in areas such as music business, technology, film and theatre, and church ministry.
The program aims to train worship pastors, media directors, studio musicians and engineers, film and stage performers, recording artists and songwriters.
The name, 8Eighty Records, was proposed by a UMobile student who noted that the university campus encompassed 880 acres in north Mobile County.
“Our mission is to impact the church with worship and songs of faith through God’s unique gifts and abilities of the student body and alumni from the University of Mobile,” Quimby said. “Our purpose is to proclaim the wonders of God through concert, performance presentation publishing, recording, radio, television and internet communication.”
The new recording studio is under construction in Martin Hall on the UMobile campus at 5735 College Parkway. The studio is expected to be completed by November and include the latest technology, giving UMobile students opportunities both to record and produce CDs in the same type of professional environment they will encounter in their music careers.
The Building Blocks
UMobile Artist-in-Residence Jason Breland is executive director of 8Eighty Records. Additionally, Breland is a recording artist and worship pastor at First Baptist North Mobile. He said CPA ensembles such as Voices of Mobile, Impact, Exit 13, RamCorps and Jazz Band have made international appearances and brought attention to the college’s Worship Leadership and School of Music programs. The UMobile Center for Performing Arts was started more than a decade ago by Jason’s father, Dr. Roger Breland, who serves as executive director of a program aimed at training, developing and education the next generation of music leaders. Breland founded the groundbreaking contemporary Christian group TRUTH, which produced generations of successful leaders in Christian music including 4Him, Avalon, Natalie Grant, Steve Green, Alicia, Kim Noblitt, Russ Lee, Anthony Evans, and Dick and Mel Tunney.
“Our vision is that students will have the biblical foundation, the musical and technical tools, and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit necessary to fulfill God’s call in their lives,” Dr. Roger Breland said.
For more information, visit 8EightyRecords.com or call 251-442-2553. Follow 8Eighty Records on Facebook and on Twitter @8EightyRecords.
About the University of Mobile
The University of Mobile is a Christian university located in Mobile, on an 880-acre campus near Gulf Coast beaches. More than 1,600 students are enrolled in more than 40 undergraduate and graduate programs in the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Christian Leadership, School of Business, School of Christian Ministries, School of Education, School of Nursing, School of Worship Leadership, Center for Performing Arts/School of Music and Center for Adult Programs. For more information about the University of Mobile, visit the website at umobile.edu or call Enrollment Services at 800-WIN-RAMS or 251-442-2222.