Finding his voice
Brady Cudmore has always dreamed of being a pop star.
And thanks to being in the right place at the right time — and his dogged determination — the P.E.I. teenager is one step closer to achieving his musical dream.
His song, Dream It, has just been chosen to be included on the next Smart Trax compilation DVD.
“I’m so excited (about) how things are coming together. It’s overwhelming and unbelievable,” says Brady after New York music producer David Musial brought his recording studio to his Hampshire, P.E.I., home last week.
Musial is CEO of One World Artists, a company that creates Smart Trax — contemporary music videos and audio tracks for young people containing positive messages about non-violence, self-confidence and being drug- and alcohol- free.
“This is the reason I had to come to P.E.I.,” says Musial, turning up the volume to Dream It as Brady’s resonating vocals are heard.
“After hearing Brady sing this song I said, ‘My head is spinning,’?” says Musial, who helps young artists develop their skills through projects like Smart Tracks.
During his three-day visit, he also recorded Brady’s vocals for two other songs, I Have a Real Dream, inspired by Martin Luther King, and We Could Start a Fire, a song he received from artist Kevin Bertotti for his upcoming reality show, 100 Songs in 100 Days that he hopes to feature Brady on.
“We don’t have a contract yet, but we’re pretty close,” says Musial.
The recording session is the latest development in a story that started in September when Brady went to New York City to attend the Audio Engineering Society’s (AES) music and technology convention.
“I was there with a group of students to buy new microphones for our school,” says the Bluefield student.
Known for his energetic portrayal of Doody in the school’s production of Grease, Brady has always dreamed of becoming a pop star so when he was in New York he thought he’d try to do something about it.
When his classmates took off to see the Statue of Liberty, the Grade 12 student stayed behind to explore the educational exhibits at the convention in downtown Manhattan.
After checking out various booths, he spotted one for the Stevens Institute of Technology, which appeared to have the music program he wanted.
“I ran up to the man at the booth and said, ‘I’m Brady Cudmore. I’m from P.E.I. and I want to be a pop star,’ ” says the enthusiastic teenager.
It turned out to be Musial, who’s also the college’s director of music and technology.
“It was a series of events that started adding up,” says Brady, who was persistent in developing the contact.
Several phone calls later Musial agreed to meet with him after receiving permission from school chaperones. He invited Brady and several classmates to his studio overlooking New York City’s skyline.
“He wanted to see how interested I was in going to his school. Then at his studio I sang not knowing that I was technically auditioning for him,” says Brady.
Musial was impressed with what he heard.
“Brady sang two tracks, lead vocal and harmony. In the recording studio we shot a video out on the terrace. I had a camera and one of his friends had a camera and he went through it once without a flaw,” says Musial.
Since returning home to P.E.I., Brady’s family has received daily phone calls from New York.
“When we first heard about it we were shocked in a positive but skeptical kind of way. It was unbelievable,” says his father, Tim Cudmore.
But as they continued discussing it on the phone it became more realistic.
“Right now our lawyers are drafting up an agreement. Things look positive,” he says.
His voice teacher believes her student has a positive future.
“It’s an excellent opportunity for Brady. And it’s an excellent opportunity to recognize Canadian talent,” says Lori Linkletter.
Brady is now trying to balance the opportunities that await him with other things in his life like an audition for his upcoming high school musical and Grade 12 graduation. And this week he’s answering questions about how he made an important connection in the music industry.
“I’m a stubborn kind of a person. That’s my secret. So I decided to use that trait in a positive way. I was very assertive in that situation.
“And now I’m waiting to take the next step,” he says.
At a glance...
n Who: Kevin Bertotti, a songwriter and video producer
n What: 100 Songs in 100 Days
n When: From Aug. 1 to Nov. 9, 2007, Bertotti will collaborate with various studios, producers, bands, artists, and engineers to produce a song a day. P.E.I.’s Brady Cudmore has been asked to sing one of his songs. The experience will be turned into a reality TV show and the songs will be online.