Meet Walter Chancellor: IPR’s first hire

Walter Chancellor – Instructor, Musician, Production Aficionado

Walter Chancellor

Often called the “epitome of cool,” no one represents IPR better than Walter Chancellor—for several reasons. For one, he was the first instructor hired by IPR founder Jack Robinson in 2002. For another, he’s almost always known he wanted to work in the media arts industry as a musician, and he’s become quite successful at it.

But perhaps most importantly, Walter is a teacher and mentor at heart. Even before he came to IPR, he was working with young people teaching music theory and basic sequencing at the Electronics Musicians Workshop.  There he met Robinson, and the rest, as they say, was history. Coming to IPR, Walter says, has taught him almost as much as he’s taught to the students.

CLASSES: Walter teachers the lab portion of AP154 – Desktop Production I

Walter guides students through a music production exercise in Apple Logic

“My skills have come up 70%, I’d say,” he said. “I always had ears for music, but coming to IPR really gave me a more accelerated rate of that progression.”

Walter credits fellow IPR instructors Brian Jacoby and Steve Price for increasing his skill set. He is certified in both Pro Tools and Logic and serves as an advisor to students in Pro Tools, Logic, audio production, and MIDI. Almost all first quarter students will have a class with Walter.

In fact, 2014 Winter Quarter valedictorian Roman Pinter said in his graduation speech that the most important thing he learned on his first day of class was “not to piss off Walter.”

Which Walter thinks is just great. “That’s right—tough love,” he said. “If you’re going to be here, be a real student. I tell students we’re going to have fun, but when it’s time to get serious and you’re messing around, I’ll call you out on it.”

Walter plays his saxaphone at an IPR event

ADVICE TO STUDENTS: “All you need are basic recording tools—but they don’t have to be shiny and brand new to express your inner talents. If it’s still intact, you can use it.”
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Audio Production and Engineering Instructor Guides Students, Inspires Others

Institute of Production and Recording (IPR) instructor, Kevin Bowe, playfully jokes around with the students in his audio production capstone course as they sit in the Mastermix studio at the IPR campus, located in downtown Minneapolis. On this particular day, they are working with the local indie rock and folk band Communist Daughter as they record their newest album. The atmosphere may be casual, but it is professional. With the studio’s state of the art equipment, Communist Daughter effortlessly lays down a track while the students learn the ins and outs of the production process from Bowe, who has years of experience in the music industry.

It is obvious the students enjoy the class and Bowe as an instructor. Even amid technical difficulties, Bowe uses it as a teaching moment, telling the students how to deal with issues that may arise in a future producing career.

“We have to keep the band comfortable. It’s our job to make sure everything runs smoothly, and if it doesn’t, just keep assuring them and telling them it’s alright. We’ll get it figured out,” Bowe advises the students.

Communist Daughter is definitely comfortable. Bowe and lead singer Johnny Solomon have a close relationship, and Solomon says he trusts Bowe to mix his music because he knows what kind of sound he likes.

Bowe’s class is very hands-on, already giving this small group of five or six students a chance to work with a national touring band and apply their skills to help produce an album. They each take turns at the computer and sound board, communicating with the band members on the other side of the window to set the rhythm, tune the instruments and mix the tracks.

“I love working with this group of kids,” Bowe says. “They know what they’re doing. They’ve already been in school for a year and half, so it’s more like we’re all working together rather than me just teaching them.”

This particular day of class is special because a film crew from public television station TPT arrives after lunch. They are filming shots for the station’s series MN Original, a show that celebrates Minnesota’s creative community. They are working on a segment featuring Bowe and his involvement in the local music scene.

The episode documents Bowe’s interaction with the students, the band and his work in general. Bowe not only guides and offers insight to his students every day, but he writes, produces and performs music himself.

“My hope is that I can use my experience to teach these students what I know so that they are prepared for a career in the field,” Bowe says. “Of course, I hope they have a little fun along the way, too.”

Watch Bowe’s episode of MN Original.

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Barb Abney of The Current, Today @ DIY 360

The Current Host Barb Abney Makes Her First Appearance on IPR’s DIY 360

Today at 3-4pm, Robinson Hall
The Institute of Production & Recording
300 1st Ave North, Suite 500

Host Kevin Bowe has been working for a while to make an appearance from Barb Abney Happen at IPR’s DIY 360 event. Barb is currently the early daytime host of The Current, a member-supported radio station focused on playing new and popular music, part of Minnesota Public Radio. The Current is rather unique within the public radio sphere in its programing and features not only a devout local following but a substantial national and global listenership via digital and terrestrial broadcast.

Barb Abney herself is currently the early daytime host, playing weekdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.  According to her biography, “Abney came to The Current in 2006 from Cincinnati’s, one of the premiere alternative stations in the country. She DJ’d there for 12 years and built a radio and online community of music nerds.” 

Barb Abney
Image courtesy of The Current website.

Read about and listen to Barb’s past features here, on The Current website.

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Congratulations, IPR Winter 2014 Graduates

IPR Hosts Winter 2014 Commencement at the Southern Theater

IPR 2014 Commencement Ceremony

IPR Winter 2014 CommencementIPR Winter 2014 CommencementIPR Winter 2014 CommencementIPR Winter 2014 Commencement

We’d like to take a moment and congratulate all of the new IPR alumnus who took the stage this Sunday at the Southern Theater to accept their degrees. It was an honor to host, once again, such an amazing group of future music and entertainment professionals and welcome you into the professional community. Thank you also to the parents, family and friends who attended — your support has been a key element to the success of these graduates. Thank you also to host, Scooter Nelson, speaker and alumnus, Bryan Mengy, and to our Career Services staff, Sandra Robinson and Breanna Lewis, for putting the event together.

Follow the jump for a complete list of graduates.

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Dallas McLaughlin – Graduate Success Story

The creative fields and technology are changing every day. Two years from now, graduates are likely to be working in jobs that simply do not exist today, at least not as we see them. This is why we try to impress on students an entrepreneurial spirit. Whether they go to work for themselves, or become “intrapreneurs” within an established business, those who are prepared to diversify and adapt are the most successful graduates.

A shining example of an alumnus with this spirit is Dallas McLaughlin, a 2006 graduate who showed up on our radar last fall with his inspiring YouTube video “I Guess This Dream’s For Me” and a uniquely creative resume shared on his personal blog at in a post titled “Cutting through the static and landing your dream job” (

Since leaving IPR, Dallas has owned his own studio, restaurant and consulting business, launched a successful clothing line, and crafted himself into a respected marketing and social media expert through personal experience. We caught up with Dallas for a brief interview.

Dallas McLaughin Five Oh Seven Clothing

What are you doing now?

I work for an Inc. 500 & ICIC 100 company in downtown Phoenix, AZ. I was hired in January to create and implement social media and micro-content marketing strategies. The company is ranked as one of the fastest growing companies in the country, and the #1 fastest growing woman owned businesses. We have our headquarters in Phoenix, as well as new offices in San Diego, CA and Shanghai, China. I was also recently contracted to do the same type of work for James Woods’ campaign to become a Congressman in Arizona. Prior to that I was splitting time as a freelance social media and small business consultant, while also owning a number of businesses of my own.

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IPR Presents: DIY 360′s Spring Season

Radio Personalities, Folk, Rock, Songwriters and Book Agents Top This Season’s Roster

What is DIY 360?

DIY 360 is a recurring interview and performance event at IPR hosted by Kevin Bowe, focused on growing careers in the media arts and entertainment industries.

The goal is to introduce attendees to professionals in the field who have been successful, frequently by forging their own path and adapting to the ever-changing landscape. Guests share information about their careers, their philosophies about professionalism and their art. Guests often give advice to budding artists, entertainment business professionals, producers and engineers. DIY 360 is an opportunity for students to network with those working in the field and with each other as they work toward career

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St. Patrick’s Day Music in Minneapolis

There’s no shortage of opportunities for Irish pride (whether you’re Irish or not) when it comes to Music tonight in Minneapolis. Here’s just a few:

First Avenue – City Pages and MN Beer Activists’ St. Patrick’s Day Rally for Sunday Sales ft. Romantica, White Iron Band, and Silverback Colony

City Pages and MN Beer Activists will be hosting their St. Patrick’s Day Rally for Sunday Sales and First Avenue. Music starts at 7pm and includes Romantica, White Iron Band, and Silverback Colony.

MN Beer Activists St Patricks Sunday Sales Rally

Turf Club – St. Patrick’s Day Celebration ft. The Belfast Cowboys

The Turf Club’s celebration starts at 3pm, but the music starts at 7pm, with special guests The Dirt Road Ramblers, Grant Hart, Toast, and of course, The Belfast Cowboys.

Belfast Cowboys

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IPR Presents: Patricia Lacy of Sounds of Blackness @ DIY 360

Patricia Lacy performed with Grammy winning Sounds of Blackness and toured with Luther Vandross

Monday, March 10th, 3pm in Robinson Hall

We are very excited to invite Patricia back after our last event with her was unfortunately cancelled due to inclement weather conditions.

Patricia Lacy - Courtesy of Indiana University.

Photo Courtesy of Indiana University.

Patricia Lacy is one of Minnesota’s most talented gospel singers. Patricia, also Patricia Lacy-Aiken, has performed with Grammy winning gospel group Sounds Of Blackness and toured for many years with Luther Vandross. She currently appears in the film documentary “20 Feet From Stardom.”

DIY 360 is a recurring event at IPR hosted by Kevin Bowe. The goal is to introduce students to professionals in the field who have been successful, frequently by adapting to changes in the business where they make use of multiple skill sets. Guests share information about their careers, their philosophies about professionalism and their art. Guests often give advice to budding artists, entertainment business professionals, producers and engineers. DIY 360 is an opportunity for students to network with those working in the field and with each other as they work toward career success.

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IPR’s Winter Open House – March 1st, 2013, 11am to 3pm

IPR’s Admissions and Education Staff Host Open House – This Saturday!

IPR is pleased to welcome students, prospective students, employers, their friends and families, and members of the general community to an Open House this Saturday from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM

Come see IPR’s new state-of-the-art 50,000 square foot campus located at 300 North First Ave, in Downtown Minneapolis. The new location is in the heart of Minneapolis’ Music and advertising scene and features recording, video, photography and design studios and facilities in a historic warehouse building on the corner of First Avenue North and 3rd Street North (yes, that’s right up the street from the famous First Avenue music venue). 

Student housing community representatives will be on site to talk with potential students about options for students attending IPR.

Interactive Seminars

IPR’s Program Chairs and faculty including, Kevin Bowe, Jeff Deslauriers, Bob Jenkins and Mitch Hare, as well as Director of Career Services and Director of Financial Aid will present free seminars including:

Songwriting Master Class

  •        Hooks, titles and choruses
  •        Publishing and copyrights

Do You Pay for Music?  

What You Need to Know About Making a Career in the Creative Media Arts

  •        Intellectual Property – What is it?
  •        The Effect of Digital on Artists and Consumers
  •        The Future of Paying for Creative Content

Sound Design Explained

  •        Introduce the craft of sound design (audio post production).
  •        Explain what forms of media utilize sound design: Film, TV, Video Games, etc.
  •        Demonstrate/show example of sound design project 

Resume Writing

  • Necessary Information to Include
  • Organizing your Resume
  • Job Search Protocol

Scholarship Searching

  • Scholarship search sites
  • Top 6 reasons your essay might not win you a scholarship
  • I applied for a scholarship, now what?

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Check out Bruce McCabe, Songwriter and Piano Player at IPR’s DIY 360 on YouTube

Bruce McCabe – Blue’s Piano Great of Jonny Lang Fame Joins us for DIY 360

Having great piano player, singer and songrwiter Bruce McCabe join us for IPR’s DIY 360 interview and performance series was a truly unique experience. Bruce grew up in Clinton, IA, son to a guitarist and science teacher — he purchased his first guitar in 1968, a Martin D28, which he still owns today. He also began playing piano at a young age, taking classical lessons and composing music, and can still play his first classical composition from memory.

Bruce’s fascinating history and talent are displayed through this interview with host, Grammy award winning producer and songwriter Kevin Bowe. Prior to writing, recording and touring with the legendary young blues guitarist Jonny Lang, Bruce was a member of two influential Twin Cities bands, Lamont Cranston (touring with Bonnie Raitt) and The Hoopsnakes. Bruce talks about highlights in his career like opening for the Rolling Stones and his early influences including Otis Spann and Johnnie Johnston.  Bruce’s performances include “Still Raining”, a song he wrote and played with The Hoopsnakes, and “Lie to Me”, a song he created for Johny Lang’s first album.

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