Born and raised in Ohio, Michelle Waters has now lived in West Virginia a third of her life. Music has been a way for her to both connect and escape, for as long as she can remember. A self-proclaimed "experientialist", she lives for experiences, and is happiest on the road or being a part of an immersive, live performance. She loves music, making and teaching art, photographing people and places, and exploring the world around her.
The idea of Hold the Note came to her when she found herself falling in love with her local music scene, and wishing there was a resource to pull everyone together. In the vein of memories of DIY news zines from her high school and college days, Michelle wanted to create something that was accessible, real and collective.
Chad Cochran was born and raised in the small town of Frederickstown, Ohio. While there was little else to do, he spent his days with hair metal posters all over his walls. Meticulously hitting "stop/rewind/play" on a tape deck, Chad tried to dissect every word of each song. He went on to play in college bands, eventually finding an interest in photography, with a focus on rural settings. Most recently, he has come full circle, making a connection with his musical youth, and has started photographing musicians and concerts.
"Without music, I wouldn't be who I am today. It (music) has helped me through my darkest times, but also through my happiest times. There is nothing like music, which can take me back to a specific moment, where I remember the location and time, as if it just happened. I coexist with the songs. Music is who I am. We are all one. "
West Virginia native Jessi McPeek loves photographing bands and live music. Check out her business page on Facebook.
John has lived many places in his lifetime, but West Virginia will always be where he is drawn back to. His love for creating music and enjoying the live music experience were spawned here, all of which formed a large portion of his identity. Entering his local music scene at a time of great decline, his mission has long been to breathe life back into a disconnected and dying scene.
Be it organizing a show, putting musicians in contact with each other, or encouraging bands forward with their art, his end goal is to bring people together and create a true community all throughout West Virginia.
Jess Baldwin is a voice teacher and voice specialist who specializes in functional voice training, vocal health, and contemporary and commercial voice pedagogy. Learn more at jessbaldwin.com.