Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Students Finish out the Fall Semester with Projects and Performances

The final weeks of the Fall semester are always jam-packed with final projects, concerts, and recitals. One example, shown above, was the final song of Music Industry student Brett Bosetski's recital. Students from the Music program joined Brett for a performance of "Little Talks" by Of Monsters and Men. Recitals give students the opportunity to push the limits of their musical experience.

Student projects are also a major part of Music Industry classes as the end of the semester nears. In the photo above, we are doing a demonstration in our Audio for Video class on how to properly mic the talent on-screen for the best possible audio quality. The result of our demo can be seen here!

As another exciting way to end the semester, the Students for Music organization welcomed Tom Washatka Quorum to bring their engaging brand of jazz fusion. The event served as a perfect example of how UWO Music students not only experience great music, but also learn how to produce and record a professional live concert. This is only a small sample of all that we did to close out the semester. We made it to break, but rest assured, things will be kicking back into full gear when courses resume for the upcoming Spring semester.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Guests and Student Performers Enhance Learning this Fall Semester

The "Recording Studio Procedures" class is an integral part of the Music Industry program that focuses on techniques for recording a variety of instruments such as piano, drums, brass, winds, and vocals. As a part of the class, we welcomed special guest, Vic Lombardi, from the company, "Spoiled by Technology" to talk to us about Audix mics. The event was arranged by David Pietila at Pixel Pro Audio in Appleton, a recent graduate of the program.

As a part of the process, students willingly volunteer to bring in their instruments and play them for us while we test out various mic positions and techniques. It is often very surprising to learn how much the microphone choice and placement affects the tone of the recording. On the day that Vic visited, we learned the process of setting up and recording a drum kit.

We are looking forward to finishing out the semester by bringing together what we learned as we learn more advanced mixing and signal routing skills in the studio and prepare for all of the potential scenarios that will require professional-level processing and editing of audio.

It was a particularly "colorful" day working with Pro Tools in class.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Special Guest Alumni Share Their Experiences with Students

During homecoming week, students in the Music program had the pleasure of welcoming a visit from two distinguished alumni from the UW Oshkosh Music Industry program. Our guests, Tony Memmel and Sue Guenther, brought a wealth of experience to share from their diverse backgrounds.

Tony Memmel is a world-traveling singer-songwriter, composer, and clinician. He is an ambassador for the non-profit organization, The "Lucky Fin Project", which supports children with limb differences. He has also been commissioned to compose symphonic and choral works based on his music. During the discussion and presentation sessions, Tony talked about the excitement and challenges that are a part of being a professional musician, what led him to study music in college, and ultimately, why he decided to pursue a career in music.

Sue Guenther spent the last 18 years of her career in the Arts Management and Administration field. She currently works with the North Carolina Symphony, which has an extensive music education program. In addition to her business experience, she is an accomplished vocalist and active performer. Sue shared her insight on how to work with people in the music industry, including nationally recognized musicians, and what it takes to find long-term success.

Both Tony and Sue were so generous to offer their time and expertise. We are grateful for their insight and so proud to see the wonderful work that is being done by our grads. We have no doubt that they inspired and made a strong impression on students. It was a very memorable week! You can listen to Tony's latest album below:

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Student has unforgettable internship experience with "Gear Gods"

During the Spring semester of 2017, UWO student (and now alum) Isaac Stolzer-Gary landed an internship at the popular metal music-based website "Gear Gods". As a part of his internship experience, he traveled to the National Association of Music Merchandisers conference in Anaheim, California.

"My two main jobs during the NAMM show were to assist with the camera operations, as well as to edit the footage and audio every night that we gathered throughout the day." Isaac wrote in his internship journal, "Overall the NAMM show was an incredible experience. Under the Gear Gods name, I got to meet so many of my favorite guitarists and musicians, and it was truly amazing to be a part of such a supportive community. I really saw how everything is connected in the music industry (from musicians to videographers to business personnel, and everyone in between). At least at NAMM, everyone seemed so supportive of each other and the idea of being passionate about music and music business."

Isaac spent the majority of his time at the Gear Gods internship working on a variety of videos for the website's connected YouTube channel, as well as contributing written articles to the website. The internship serves as a great example of the variety of experience that graduates must bring into Music Industry jobs. Not only was it important for Isaac to have a strong grasp of media editing skills for audio and video, but also requires strong social skills for interacting with musicians, writing skills, a strong sense of organization and the ability to complete tasks in a timely manner.

Ultimately, Isaac finished his internship having completed several dozen important projects. In his final journal entry, he said, "This internship was such an enlightening, helpful, and important experience in my life. I was able to network with so many important people in the music scene, work alongside people I’ve always looked up to, and develop my video, audio, and writing skills even further in a real-world scenario. I opened so many new doors with this internship and solidified tons of connections with people not only in California, but all over the world. To see my work being admired and shared by famous musicians and music industry representatives was so surreal and important to my own career in the industry." Congratulations to Isaac on his accomplishments, and we look forward to following his success in the future.

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Summer Workshops and Visitors in the Studio

Student David Niemi (David Paul Martin) performs as a demonstration for the Boys & Girls Club

Just because it's Summer doesn't mean the that nothing is happening in the studio! Along with some Summer cleaning and student projects, we were excited to welcome some friends to visit and talk about sound and recording!

Posing with teacher Rhex Arboleda during the summer teaching workshop
Wisconsin teachers spent several weeks on campus for a Choral and General Music Licensure Workshop led by Dr. Ken Liske. The teachers were a part of a class on the last day that discussed many aspects of recording and sound reinforcement. One of the goals was to find ways to utilize technology in the most efficient and effective way.

We also had the opportunity to invite the Boys & Girls clubs of Oshkosh and Green Bay to check out the studio and learn about how to produce a song. Student David Niemei assisted by giving a performance demonstration and explaining the recording process. The students had a great time learning in a new environment, and we enjoyed learning about the great work that leaders are doing with the local Boys & Girls clubs. We plan to stay closely connected with them in the future!

Friday, May 19, 2017

Guests Visit and Projects Wrap Up to End the Semester

Students in the Group Recording Sessions class put the final touches on their original recording
The end of the school year is always a busy time of finishing projects, performing in concerts, and cramming in all that can be learned before summer begins. The students in the Practicum and Group Recording Sessions classes made the push to complete their projects, which ranged from a classic hip-hop track to heavy metal, while students in the Music Industry Operations class gave project proposal presentations based on real-world music industry scenarios.

Ryan Romenesko (left) and Morgan Schutz (right) discuss their respective topics with the classes.
We were also excited to invite several guest speakers to our classes. This included a return visit from UW Oshkosh Music alum, Ryan Romenesko. He is currently doing amazing work at "The Refuge", which is an arts foundation and artist residency in Appleton that supports artists and musicians.

Additionally, student Morgan Schultz paid a visit to our Recording Studio Techniques II class and shared tracks from his recent album release. The students were subsequently challenged to remix the tracks and then presented their project later in the semester. The first ever Recording Concert also took place, and was a success! We received excellent feedback and plan to continue to produce concerts each year.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Finishing the Year with Many Exciting Concerts and Recitals

There has been a lot going on as we move into the final weeks of the semester. At this time of year, there are concerts and recitals nearly every night, and both students and faculty are keeping very busy. This past Friday, musical guests, "Pulsoptional" were welcomed, which includes Dr. John Mayrose, a composition professor in the Department of Music. They showcased a blend of contemporary and prog rock sounds.

Pulsoptional performs at the Recital Hall

Another great concert was, "Sounds Like Now", which took place in the Priebe Art Gallery on campus. This series is a continuing collaboration between faculty and students. This particular event featured a variety of unique contemporary pieces, one of which included a large 52-page musical score that required the performers move around the room in order to read!

Dr. Dylan Chumura-Moore, Dr. Drew Whiting, and student Logan Lamers performing at the "Sounds Like Now" concert.

Additionally, many students are performing their junior and senior recitals before graduating or starting their internships. One of our Music Industry students and singers, Matthew Mikunda, finished his recital with guests Adam Robinson and Cam Anderson. We always look forward to the students displaying their range of musical talent that they have developed throughout their time in the program.

Students (and soon to be grads) Ryan Lindley (behind piano), Macky Mikunda, Cam Anderson, and Adam Robinson

Lastly, the Music Industry program is excited to be hosting the first ever Recording Concert this Wednesday, April 26, aptly titled, "R1". It will feature 10 songs that were recorded by Majors and Minors in the program, which also feature the talents of many UWO musicians. We are sure to finish out the semester in exciting fashion!

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Recording Class Produces Drum Miking Video

During the Fall 2016 Recording Studio Procedures class, we took on the challenge of recording drums in the choir room next to the studio. Our goal was to capture a professional sound while taking advantage of the acoustics of the room. This gave us the opportunity to experiment in new ways and learn how different microphones affected the tone of the kit.

The band that we recorded was The Present Age, consisting of students Isaac and Logan Lamers. Isaac did a fantastic job performing on drums, and he nailed it in only a few takes. From this experience, we produced a video that documented the process and also shows how the mics were used on each part of the kit. Check it out, and notice the difference between the raw sound of the room and the fully mixed final product:

In the months that followed, the band worked on recording the remainder of the song, and just recently released it as a new single. You can check it out below! We were really thrilled at how well the project turned out. It goes to show that good mic technique and taking advantage of room acoustics can yield fantastic results.

Monday, February 20, 2017

Students Finding Diverse Internship Experiences

Internships are a vital part of the Music Industry program. Students will generally fulfill this requirement at the very end of the program, often traveling to various locations across the country. A number of recent grads have done their internship in Nashville, while others have been to locations in Chicago, various areas of California, and also right here in Wisconsin.

The types of internships have been quite varied. Some have been recording studio positions, while others have been connected with the Music Industry, such as with marketing and promotional companies. Students, faculty, industry professionals and alumni all work together to help students find beneficial and lasting experience that can often lead into a career. Take a look at our "careers" page for more specifics about the experiences of our students and alumni.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

The Computer Music Lab Gets an Update

The Computer Music Lab in the Arts & Communications building has a full room of iMac lab stations. The lab is an excellent resource for students to utilize recording and composition software such as Pro Tools, Adobe Audition, and Sibelius. It is also used for several classes, including Recording Techniques I and II, as well as Audio for Video.

Over the break, the lab was updated with brand new MIDI keyboard controllers at all stations, as well as Auralex acoustic paneling on the walls. These panels help to reduce unwanted "flutter echo" from the sound reflecting between the walls and improves the overall acoustics of the space.

We are looking forward to doing more upgrades over the course of the next year, but the changes have already provided an excellent acoustic and visual upgrade.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Students Present Recording Projects to Music Students

During a Fall Semester convocation, several students from the Practicum II class presented their recording projects to all of the students in the Music program. Adam Robinson and Dylan Finley did a fantastic job explaining the process by which they captured and mixed the audio in order to create a professional final product. This served as a great opportunity for students to better understand what is behind the recording process, and how the use of signal processing tools can change the final outcome of the mix.

Adam Robinson presents his recording project to music students

Another Practicum II student, Matt "Mackie" Mikunda, was a performer on the song that was presented by Adam Robinson. Matt has also just released a full-length album that includes songs that were discussed in class over the course of the semester. One of the tracks from the album is posted below: