While we love classical music, we support music appreciation in all its forms. Sometimes, you need to interrupt the Beethoven for some Beck. To highlight the wide range of experiences music has to offer, we interviewed Steve Slavin, local realtor for Coldwell Banker The Real Estate Group and Muncie Symphony board member with a pop rock past.

Steve’s love for music began when he was about 4 years old, listening to Dave Brubeck waft up the stairs as his parents played it on the Hi-Fi. His mother enrolled him in piano lessons as a kid, and after learning to read music, he played the trumpet and sang in various choirs throughout his school years. In high school, he started playing in bands—a decision that followed him through college and beyond.

Although Steve isn’t currently in a band, he explained his experience with his last band, Clifton Wells. He played lead guitar, lead vocals, and wrote over 90 songs for 2 CDs. After they released a CD, they toured college towns in Indiana, where driving 2 hours to make $100 was thrilling—even if it did make for many late nights. The 3-piece power trio diverged from the pop punk scene to play in coffee shops and small venues as well.

Today, Steve still enjoys song writing in his home studio, where the learning curve is worth the fun that comes from recording music. His taste in music doesn’t stick to one genre, but jumps from classical to jazz, REM, and folk guitar. As a board member, he looks forward to encouraging others to explore music through the MSO, and is thankful for his parents’ love of music and his family’s connection to Ball State that always brought him to Muncie Symphony performances in the past.

Finally, we asked Steve what advice he might have for people wanting to be more involved with music, or who might want to start a band. Here are some wise words to live by:

“No matter how bad it may start out to sound, start a band.  Learn your craft.  Embrace the suck.  Learn the sounds and your limits.  Figure out your gifts through trial and error, and work on it daily.  Don’t get too freaked out over criticism.  Find your own voice.  Eventually, you’ll see the progress, and with a lot of luck you might even become a rock star.  But more importantly, you’ll grow as a person through the music regardless of age.”

A huge thank you to Steve Slavin for talking with us about his journey with music thus far. To all those kids wanting to be rock stars, to the adults who belt out their favorite tune in the car, and to those already pursuing their passion for music—take a moment to appreciate the diverse role music plays in your life. We look forward to hearing your stories in the future.

Written by Gwyn Harris