Press Release

June 12, 2013

High School Music Departments of Winning Band Awarded Recording Equipment

COLUMBUS, Ohio (June 12, 2013) — The dust has settled from the March 1, 2013 Instaband
high school battle of the bands competition, but winning band A F(r)iend in Me, has been
hard at work ever since. The band is working with students at GROOVE U on material for
their first EP. In addition to recording, they are working with graphic designer, Matt Holley,
on a logo and merchandise. Not to mention interviews and photo shoots that A F(r)iend in
Me has been a part of following Instaband. It’s been a wild ride for the band who formed
less than a year ago.

Recently, music teachers and administrators from the band member’s respective high
schools - Groveport Madison and Arts & College Preparatory Academy visited GROOVE U
for a special presentation. There, high school music instructors Noah Demland and Nathan
Stowe learned it wasn’t just their students who benefited from the Instaband experience.
Sweetwater Music Instruments & Pro Audio, an Instaband sponsor, donated gear to the
winning band member’s high schools: a Fender Stratocaster guitar, a Focusrite audio
recording interface, and studio headphones.

“We were very impressed with the level of talent that participated in Instaband this year,”
said Dwight Heckelman, founder and director at GROOVE U. “The donations from
Sweetwater, and other partners, will provide unique opportunities for advancing these
music programs.”

Instaband encourages youth to create and perform their own music. GROOVE U students
felt it was important to portray this message by choosing three music-centric Columbus
nonprofits – the Dick & Jane Project, Music Loves Ohio and Through Mind’s Eyes – to
benefit from Instaband proceeds.

In addition to encouraging youth to create and perform their own music, GROOVE U
hopes that Instaband will instill a sense of value in high school music teachers and
administrators for supporting nontraditional bands at their schools.

Thanks again to all student bands, high schools, sponsors, and fans who made Instaband a
real success. We look forward to promoting the importance of young music talent through
events like Instaband in the future. For more information on upcoming events, partners,
and beneficiaries, visit


GROOVE U is a revolutionary two-year music industry career program located in the Short North Arts District of Columbus, Ohio. Led by 20-year music industry veteran Dwight Heckelman, GROOVE U focuses on a career-centered approach to learning developed by active industry professionals. The guiding philosophy of the program is that the music industry is creatively engaged, apprenticeship based and relationship driven. The full-time program offers small, personalized classes with both a broad, solid foundation and specialized areas of study in: live music, production, business, video and interactive. The school officially opened its brand new state-of-the-art 30,000-square foot creative campus in September 2012, and is currently enrolling for Fall 2013.