There’s no one path to success in the music industry.
That was the biggest takeaway from Jim Eno’s Tuesday event as the Spoon drummer and producer took the stage at Glidden Recital Hall to impart some wisdom to aspiring music industry students.
“That band OK Go, everyone knows that band right?” Eno said slyly setting up the audience. “Just imagine if they were in the audience and they raised their hand and were like ‘how do I get started in the music business?’ I never would have thought to say make a treadmill video. That (example) proves that you can get into the music business in many different ways.”
Eno’s appearance on campus may not have received the same kind of social media freak out as Frankie Muniz, Aaron Carter or Waka Flocka Flame have in the past. But, he is a far more accomplished musician and music industry insider and he provided a far more educational experience to the students in the School of Media Arts and Studies.
Monday night a group of students and myself joined Eno for a drink and a casual chat at West End Cider House, 234 W. Washington St., in which he recanted stories of destroying pianos in the studio to get that right kind of destructive sound on a Spoon record and drumming on the back of producer Jon Brion’s Grammy award for his work with Kanye West.
Between that casual environment and the interview conducted on stage Tuesday morning, students got a lot out of the experience.
“I’m a big fan of Spoon so it was good to see that artist more down to earth and the real life aspects of how this stuff works,” said Mike Driscoll, a senior studying music therapy and music composition with aspirations of being a musician himself. “It affirmed that there isn’t a direct route we should be taking; it’s just open.”
The last event in the school that got this much buzz was when Yo La Tengo frontman Ira Kaplan visited the university for a similar Q&A style event and later performance at Stuart’s Opera House, 52 Public Sq., Nelsonville, Ohio.
Eddie Ashworth, associate professor in the Media School, said he was pleased with the kind of interaction that took place between students.
“I thought it was fantastic that the faculty and school was able to bring someone of Jim’s experience and stature to this school and especially someone who is so engaged not only with the past of the industry but also what’s going on now,” Ashworth said. “He offered very down to Earth, very, in many ways, encouraging advice to our students regarding the various paths that they can take to careers in the music industry.”
You can watch the full event online as it was live streamed and archived on YouTube. Eno discussed the band’s rise through many different eras all while giving highly insightful advice.