Blending business and the arts

Colin Bracewell playing guitar on stage and singing into mic

Singer-songwriter. Marketing director. Tour manager. Colin Bracewell ’23 wears those hats and more while double majoring in marketing at the U of M’s Carlson School of Management and vocal performance at the College of Liberal Arts.
The blend of business and the arts has served him well amid his budding indie-pop career. Bracewell says he splits his time between music and Excel sheets.
“So much of the music industry is business,” says Bracewell. “Everything’s about staying organized and checking your emails and scheduling. I went on a Midwest tour this past summer, which was really cool, and I booked it all myself.”
That tour included a sold-out stop at First Avenue’s famed 7th Street Entry in Minneapolis, a feat he calls one of his proudest music moments. His recent track “Making Me Crazy” is also on rotation on the Minnesota Public Radio station The Current.
“It’s the little wins, you know? And I’m grateful for all of them,” Bracewell says.
Bracewell credits connections made in his Carlson School classes in helping him navigate his path in the Midwest music scene. When figuring out how to promote his music, he says marketing senior lecturer Allison Murn provided him with key guidance on how to develop assets to better market himself to radio stations.
“[Murn shared] little things and tricks that I just had no idea about,” says Bracewell. “So much of that applies to other industries as well. It was really cool to just be like, ‘Oh, I could actually apply these tools with something that I'm really passionate about.’”
While balancing coursework, practice sessions, and concerts can sometimes make a hectic schedule, Bracewell relishes staying involved on campus and in the local music scene. His advice? Just go for it.
“It's just really cool how if you set your mind to it, you can do it,” he says. “It takes time and it can sometimes be a real pain to do, but if you really want to do it, you can.”
After earning a scholarship from Live Nation this year, he’s focusing on writing new music to put out an album or EP over the summer and on finishing his studies next fall.
This story was adapted from the Carlson School of Management.