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Local folk band Beverly and theTHE Accordion inside SKOOL’D interview--how theirOVER musicCEDAR hits home. LOCAL BANDS--BEVERLY AND ACCORDION; LIFE TAKE VALLEY

Mixed Tape Fall Out Boy through the years

Top selling artists of the decade & the albums that got them there

E V I S U L C X Ben Hagarty on E music, life and what it means to be a part of the Skool’d revoution


Letter from the editor

elcome to Mixed Tape! This magazine is dedicated to all aspects of music and the industry. Since I have such a passion for all things music, I decided I had to compile facts, tips, interviews, songs, pictures, etc. of my most favorite bands. In here you will find featured local artists all the way to those who have made it to the big time. I’m passionate about all of them. My passion for music stems from my upbringing. Both my parents had me listening to a wide variety of genres from an early age. Mom was all about 80’s hair bands and early punk, while Dad preferred the oldies but goodies. I will tell you that I listen to literally everything, including my guilty pleasure: everything 90’s. Don’t worry, I won’t spend an excessive amount of time talking about the Backstreet Boys. I’d rather share wtih you the meaning behind my favorite songs and explore the newcomers of the industry with you. As far as the meaning of songs goes, I truly believe that there is a song for every mood or experience we go through. Without music, specifically lyrics, I would not have been able to get through any of the tough times (or happy ones for that matter) of my life. I think that one song can completely change your whole mood and alter your state of mind. I believe in the power of music to heal or inspire and hope that through sharing my experiences and love for music with people, they’ll be able to feel the same. You should know that I try to stay away from the radio as often as possible. By that I mean I’m really not big into mainstream music-you know, stuff like Rihanna and Katy Perry. That being said, I’ve always kind of marched to the drum of my own beat. You may have noticed my photo above is from Chicago. I chose this one because I feel as though it summarizes who I am and where I’m shooting to be one day. I’ve got big city dreams and I don’t intend on letting those fizzle out. I recently accpeted a job in Chicago at an event planning firm and I cannot wait to be downtown--enjoying the fabulous shopping and what I’m sure will be amazing night life, consisting of incredible bands and breath-taking music. One of the perks of my job this summer is that I get to travel to Dover, Delaware to put on the Firelyfly Music Festival this summer. Some of the bands featured there make me shiver at just saying their name. They are the following but not limited to: Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, MGMT, Ellie Goulding, The Lumineers, Passion Pit and the Red Hot Chillie Peppers, just to name a few. So you can imagine my exxcitement for the summer. Unitl then, I’m working hard at promoting the bands I love, enjoying music and sharing it with others. (Part of that being this magazine). With that being said, I hope you enjoy. Much Love,



s t n e t n o C f le o LETTER FROM THE EDITOR.........................2 TOP 10............................................................5 SKOOL’D LIFE................................................7 PHOTO ESSAY...............................................13 FALL OUT BOY TIMELINE.............................17 BEVERLY AND THE ACCORDION FEATURE.................................21


Topin the past The top selling artists of the decade

1. Norah Jones-Come Away


4. Adele-21

3. Usher-Confessions

With Me

5. 50 Cent-Get Rich

2. Eminem-The Eminem Show

or Die Tryin

7. Nickleback-All the Right

6. Evanescence-Fallen 8. Carrie Underwood-Some


10. Taylor SwiftFearless


9. Avril Lavigne-Let Go

“Everyone has been in life...

this is our movement.”


edar Falls, Iowa has always been home to many talents. From this town comes the best of the best in photography, athletics, art and music. Considering that this magazine is based solely on music, I decided to focus on the latter. When I decided that I wanted to feature a local band, I knew immediately that I had to interview Skool’d, a hip hop band created right here in CF by locals Ben Hagarty and Bai Carew. Skool’d puts together absolutely unreal beats with lyrics about living life to the fullest and taking time to remember that we are young and these are days we’ll never get back. They have found a way to create a name that is solely their own. Unlike other hip hop groups, their style consists of laid back, real music that you can’t help but bob your head to. Rather than rapping about unobtainable cars and fancy clothes or degrading women, Skool’d focuses on what college kids and twenty-somethings love the most--having a damn good time. They began in 2010 but it wasn’t until March of 2011 that they released their first EP titled, “All that Matters”. Since then, they have played numerous shows featuring themselves as well as opening for some of the biggest hip-hop names of today, including: J Cole, Big K.R.I.T. and Nappy Roots. Being asked to open for such huge names is an incredible honor

and one that Skool’d does not take lightly. They understand it is a true privilege and do everything they possibly can to be prepared for each show. You can hear their hard work and dedication in each song they produce. Not only are their songs worked on until perfected but Ben has done a fantastic job of promoting their name through merchandise, a website, Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram pages, as well as offering free downloads for each of their songs. If there is one thing Ben Hagarty is good at, it’s promotion. Should I ever become famous, I definitely want him as a supporter. The band consists of three members: two MC’s, Ben Hagarty and Bai Carew and DJ/Producer, Nate Buck. Each of them brings their own unique style and talents to the table, making for one amazing collaboration. Ben and Bai are constantly working to better craft their sound as Hip-hop artists. Not only are the two both completely engaged in the music production, lyric writing, and attention to detail for the group, they are also always focused on engagement with their fans through social media, videos, etc. “Nate is our touring DJ and is also the man behind the beats/recording equipment,” says Ben and Bai. “Everything we’ve released, Nate has recorded and produced. He constantly strives to become the best each and every day as an artist.”

“I trust my team, I trust my dream. Always.”


ehind the scenes, however, there are two men who also work hard to make the magic happen—the first, Markus Frieske, Co-Producer, who currently lives in Florida but has been with them since the early stages of the Skool’d, created all of the beats that they used for their first EP (All That Matters). “He’s working for EA Sports now, which consumes most of his time, but we can always count on him when needing an outside perspective on all aspects of our group, music and business,” says Bai. The final piece to the Skool’d puzzle is Chuck Means, the boys’ producer who recently joined their team. “He brings a whirl of power to the group,” says Ben. Studying at Berkley School of Music in Boston, Chuck already has picked up many talents within music production, but also understands the movement and will be producing their upcoming mixed tape. What I’ve found myself most curious about is the inspiration behind the boys’ name. To me, Skool’d is a very straightforward, in your face name that would rank high in street credibility. While it might be a serious feat to have “skool’d” someone, we’ve all been on the receiving end as well—we’ve all had our butts kicked by life and have been faced with the option of getting up or fighting back and just letting life get away with it. This premise is the inspiration behind the bands infamous name. The boys formed the group two years ago in the midst of hitting a series of roadblocks in their lives. They’ve all been in situations where they’ve wondered, “what if?” They believe that everyone has been there at least once in their lives, so the group was formed to encourage others to stop asking the question, ‘what if?’ and just do it. “Everyone has been Skool’d in life,” says Ben. “This is our movement.” It has been through writing lyrics and performing for sold out audiences that the members of Skool’d have been able to carry out their movement and it’s something we don’t intend on missing. The sold out shows speak for themselves and they scream in loud appraisal of the Skool’d name. But it isn’t just the high energy that attract the large crowds—it’s the relatable lyrics that fill the dope beats and make for an unbeatable combination. “Ben and I usually talk about the concept we want to address, then we’ll go to our respective places and write,” says Bai on their lyrics. “Recently though, we’ve been writing together and going off of what the other has to say and work off that. We can really relate to each other and our story telling is quite different but very much the same, which makes for a really cool product.” “As far as beats go, if we hear a song that we really like and want to sample – we’ll pitch the idea to Tenpoint and see if he can create what we vision in our heads. We all work really well together on the production side and push each other until we all get what we want.” Over the past two years, the boys have found ways to get the most out of their collaboration. It has been a learning process and they’ve discovered who does what best and what works and what doesn’t—just with any other art or talent that takes time to develop and perfect. Just as any other music artist who wants to write the perfect song or put on the perfect show, the boys have rituals that they do behind the scenes in order to get amped up and ready. “I always jam some music to get hyped before the show,” smiles Ben. “We usually start psyching each other up right before we hit the stage—like football players.”

“For me it depends, really,” says Bai. “We may get a few drinks if it’s a new crowd or venue, liquid courage can usually calm the nerves.” Spoken like a true rock star. Once I understood what happens on stage and backstage, I was curious about how they get there in the first place. Someone has to contact someone but as audience members, we never know who reaches out to whom. At least, I have never understood the process behind getting a certain artist to a particular venue, especially when they’re a local band. They have been fortunate enough to develop great relationships with promoters in many areas here in Iowa, but there are opportunities that they pursue as well because it is in the band’s best interest to make things happen. The boys each also have their favorite shows and venues to play at. After two years of performing, I suppose you would have certain nights that stand out in your mind. I asked them if there were any shows that they recall being absolutely memorable—something that will stick with them forever. “I would have to say our hometown shows we’ve done at The Hub can’t be beat, but there was show in Bloomington, IL that could be in comparison,” said Bai. “Can’t forget that show with Timeflies in Iowa City (Sold out crowd of 2000 People), says Ben. “Running up on stage for all those screaming fans was surreal...” For most 20-something’s, playing for sold out crowds of 2000 people isn’t an extra-curricular activity. Skool’d, however, shows true promise of making it to the big time—and they have every intention of doing just that. The are shooting to make it and believe that whatever type of effort it takes to get there has to be doubled, because at the end of the day, you only receive what you put in. Until they make it to the top (and make it to the top, they will) the boys have to focus on their day to day lives and since I grew up with two of the members of the band, I understand that they are real guys who lead relatively normal lives when they’re not performing for thousands of people on stage. Each of them have jobs on the side. Bai works at a local Veridian, Nate DJ’s events and works in a kitchen and Ben does some freelance videography while managing local hero, Taylor Morris. Taylor Morris is the quad-amputee from Cedar Falls as well that has been taking storm in the media ever since he stepped on an IUD last May, causing all four of his limbs to be amputated. Ben spends the majority of his time setting up interviews for Taylor to go around the country and tell his story. He documents every step of Taylor’s journey so that those of us back home can follow and remain close to Taylor even though he’s miles away and so that the rest of the world can fully understand just how amazing Taylor his and appreciate the great lengths he has gone to for us and our country. It seems that while the boys of Skool’d aren’t schooling everyone on stage, they’re filling their time with other important things, whether its videography, managing, working in a restaurant or at a bank, they’re doing what it takes to get by while trying to make a name for themselves. No matter what it is they are doing—they’re working hard and putting in their all in order to achieve the greatest possible results and for that, I highly respect each of them. Before I ended the interview, I thought it would be important and interesting to ask them if they have any advice for other artists trying to make it in the music world. As they have been throughout our entire conversation, the boys were incredibly insightful. “If you have sincere dreams then you have to fight for it, nothing comes easy in this world, we’ll be the first to say it, but ask yourself this…’Could you live without it?’ and depending on your answer, you’ll know how badly you want it. That’s all you need,” says Ben. “Also, I like the quote we chorus we created for ‘Good Company’. “We have invested so much into Skool’d; we have sacrificed so much within our personal lives…people do this every day and it’s inspiring to others and that’s why I appreciate creativity, like this. We wrote that chorus because we believe in ourselves. ‘I trust my team, I trust my dream, Always.’ Work hard and believe in what you do.”

Taylor Momsen

for NYX Professional Makeup


r in

s t r e c n co

a e Ay

As seen above: Fun., Down With Webster, Rascal Flatts, Rooney, Death Cab for Cutie, Mat Kearney; Photo Courtesy of Katie Hunt


Fall Out Boy Discography 2001-present 2001







In order of year: 2003:Evening Out with your Girlfriend;Take This to Your Grave 2005:From Under the Cork Tree 2007: Infinity on High 2008: Folie A Deux; Live in Pheonix 2009: Greatest Hits 2013: Save Rock & Roll

v e B

e h T A d c n cordion a y l er

Ann knapp photo courtesy of jeff hackbarth


hen Beverly and the Accordion got started, they had already known each other for years. In fact, it was at the same church that they all became acquainted. This weekend I had the opportunity to sit down with the female vocalist of the band, Ann Knapp, who provided me with the full background story of how the band came to be and how they got to my favorite local music venue, The Hub. Not only do the band members have history, but their name does as well. “The accordion that is played acally belongs to Michael’s grandmother, who’s name is Beverly,” says Knapp. Michael Rogers, lead vocalist and graduate from Cedar Falls High School, started the band with the inspiration from his grandmother’s accordion. Knapp does not play the accordion, and she is not Beverly, as most people come to assume. Her specialty is her uniquely beautiful voice as well as ukelele and as of recent, harmonica. Michael started the band after compiling a few songs that he wrote himself. “I’m very excited to play with him. It’s a joy because the content is personal--very heartfelt--not trying to force anything, just very natural,” says Knapp of Rogers. The two have a very magical dynamic that sets them apart from other bands. It is easy to see that they have known each other for quite some time and feel incredibly comfortable around one another.

Ann knapp photo courtesy of Jeff Hackbarth

Not only are Michael’s songs personal to his own life, but to he and his wife’s life together as well. She helped him write a lot of their songs, which was easy for them because their ongs are about their love for each other. Not too long ago, the couple welcomed into the world a baby girl who also served as great lyrical inspiration. It seems that the combination of the great friendships and heartfelt, home-hitting lyrics are what makes Beverly and the Accordion so special. While they are local now, Knapp and Rogers both have high hopes for the future. “I’m hoping to record at some point, and I know Michael wants to.” Until then, they will fill the hearts of their loyal, local followers with unique melodies and meaningful lyrics. After the interview, the band prepared to play their seven song set. The Hub reached out to Beverly and the Accordion after multiple regulars begged them to let them come back for their own show. Not too long ago, they opened an other show at The Hub, but this time it was their night to shine. And shine they did. Beverly and the Accordion shows serious promise and can only go up from here. With the recent pull towards folk-inspired music and bands, such as The Lumineers, audiences everywhere will be more than willing to accept this new, up and coming band.

Ann knapp photo courtesy of Jeff Hackbarth

2013 on tour for the first time since 2003 7/16 Vancouver, BC @ Rogers Arena 7/18 Seattle, WA @ Key Arena 7/20 Santa Barbara, CA @ Santa Barbara Bowl 7/21 San Diego, CA @ SDSU Open Air Theatre 7/23 Los Angeles, CA @ Greek Theatre 7/24 Los Angeles, CA @ Greek Theatre 7/16-7/23 Big Freedia will support 7/24 Divine Fits will support

March 19, 2013

Mixed Tape  

Magazine assignment for Editing & Design