A budding society of audiophiles is making a name for themselves here at University of Wisconsin–Stout with the Music Production Club. According to Brandon Berg, club president, the club is a “place for people who either want to learn music or already write music to get together and grow as musicians.”
Founded in 2015 by Andrew Heldstab and a group of like-minded individuals, the group is always striving to get new people involved. Now the Community Advisor, Heldstab said, “Menomonie is small, it’s nice getting fresh faces each year that are interested in music and looking for more resources. It’s also nice when you reach out to people and are able to say that you’re with [the] university.”
The club’s friendly environment helps introduce beginners to beat-making software, and coaches them through the process of music production. “The hard part,” says Berg, “is getting a four-bar riff from being in your head to a four-minute actual song that’s finished and ready to be played.”
The club boasts a mix of musicians specializing in all genres from electronic to hip-hop, and even some interested in producing live tracks. “Some of us will go through all of it—writing, composing, arranging the track and eventually mixing and mastering—and then some people are not doing [the entire thing] electronically,” said Berg.
The club also hosts a number of workshops and events throughout the year to offer students some insight to experienced artists’ methods. “Three to four times a year we’ll have an artist from the cities come in—someone who’s established and really knows what they’re doing—and basically tell us their process,” Berg said. Heldstab commented on the benefits of being an accredited student organization, saying, “I think we have been able to get some guys in for workshops that might not have been as interested without the university’s involvement.”
Some Music Production Club members are active in the music scene in town as well. “Some of us will DJ parties and host music showcases,” Berg explained, “Usually at the end of the year we throw a show—four or five of us DJ a set.”
The club meets Tuesdays at 7 p.m. in Applied Arts 320. They are hosting their first workshop of the year on Tuesday, Sept. 26, which will feature Nostalgia from the Twin Cities.