DJ CZR makes history as first graduate of Music Production Apprenticeship - with Double Distinction
29 September 2023
The first person to finish a new music production apprenticeship recorded top marks, after collaborating with up-and-coming BBC Introducing artist Maariyah Khan.
Harjan Singh Dhanjal, 21, whose stage name is DJ CZR, was the first to complete the new Assistant Recording Technician Apprenticeship, achieving a double distinction for his end-point assessment.
DJ CZR was taken on as the assistant sound engineer by Laid Back Recording Studios, in Derby, through an apprenticeship. He wanted to be employed with a steady income, as he honed his recording and mixing skills, so chose the apprenticeship route. He did his technical training with Blue Lion Training Academy in Derby.
As well as recording local rap, grime, and hip-hop artists, he collaborated with up-and-coming BBC Introducing artist Maariyah Khan with whom he recorded as part of his end-point assessment portfolio.
Harjan said “I feel honoured to become the first Assistant Recording Technician to achieve a double distinction for my apprenticeship. During this apprenticeship I learnt how to build customer relationships, how to improve my time management, understanding how to mix and master. My favourite part of the apprenticeship at the Blue Lion Training Academy was the hands-on experience in the recording studios. I loved working with all the professional equipment and getting the chance to learn directly from experienced mentors. It was incredibly rewarding to be a part of the creative music production process“.
Listen to the song L3 - Show Love, produced by DJ CZR (Parental Advisory)
Assistant Recording Technician Apprenticeship Standard
The assistant recording technician standard was designed by music industry experts with support from the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education (IfATE), where legendary music producer Sir Robin Millar is a prominent board member.
The Level 4 teaches the technical aspect of recording. This requires balancing and adjusting sound sources using equalization and audio effects, mixing, reproduction and reinforcement of sound. Harjan’s end-point assessment was delivered by AIM Qualifications and Assessment Group, the only EPAO assessors in the country for this specialised standard.
Geeta Dhanjal Operations & Designated Safeguarding Lead at Blue Lion Training Academy said “Harjan's journey is a remarkable testament to the value of apprenticeships in nurturing talent and launching careers in creative industries. His future is undoubtedly bright, and he is well on his way to making a significant impact in the world of audio production and music.”
Since completing his apprenticeship, Harjan has wasted no time in making significant strides in his career. Working with two artists and releasing his own music through the BBC Introducing app highlight his proactive approach to gaining practical experience and building a portfolio. His early successes serve as a testament to his talent and determination. He has now moved to London to begin to pursue a BA/BSc (Hons) Audio Production Degree at the prestigious SAE Institute of Music.