There are various students on campus involved in bands. One of those bands features Simpson College seniors Jared Murphy and Joel Schwichtenberg, who, along with additional members Chris Freier and Matt Wilcox form the band Mighty Shady, who have been playing shows in the Des Moines area together for around nine months.
While many Simpson students were home for fall break, Oct. 25 through 28, Mighty Shady had the opportunity to record a few of their songs that they look to put out on an EP entitled “Parked out by the Moon” in the near future.
“Well soon, hopefully by Christmas, we should have saved up enough money to professionally package the recordings in jewel cases or sleeves,” Murphy said.
The band recorded with Recording Engineer Kevin Moll.
“We recorded with Kevin in West Des Moines, near Valley Junction,” Schwichtenberg said.
They heard of Moll through an audience member at a previous show.
“We obtained this opportunity through a person who introduced himself to us after our recent show at the Bombay Bicycle Club, and after conversing, he insisted we talk to Kevin about recording,” Schwichtenberg said.
The opportunity gave members a very different experience, some having never recorded in a studio before, others having more experience with recording but not in the same way.
“Chris has a good deal of studio experience, this was my second time in a studio environment and Joel and Matt's first,” Murphy said. “For me, the recording process was super fun. It was the first time I got to work really closely with the engineer and spend a lot of time on mixing and getting tones right. As far as producing goes, it was a very collaborative effort between the band and the engineer to get the best overall sound possible.”
It was a positive experience for the group, but not without some difficulties.
“It was difficult at some points mainly due to lack of previous recording, but through trial came triumph and what is produced is put together very well,” Schwichtenberg said. “Kevin was great to work with and had a good vision with the music, and the atmosphere he has created in his studio was spot on.”
The band has numerous songs, but was only able to record a few of them this first go around.
“It was really difficult to decide which songs to record,” Murphy said. “We have almost 20 originals and only six are going to be on this final master.”
Because the band has so many original songs, they hope to record and release even more music in the coming year.
“Recording was such a great experience and we have so many more songs to record that people should be expecting another EP or even maybe a full length by March,” Murphy said. “That's the goal.”
Mighty Shady has numerous other shows scheduled, including one here on-campus in the Principal Black Box Theatre with fellow Simpson student and musician Billy Weathers (B. Well). For more information on the EP’s release and upcoming shows, be sure to check out their Facebook page, facebook.com/mightyshadymusic and to hear some of their live performances, check out their Youtube channel, youtube.com/mightyshady.