My Music. My Story. Jake Sheets.
Words by Jessie Edwards
“There are a lot of relationships I have built based on similar tastes in music”, says Jake Sheets, an engineer from Dayton, Ohio. Jake moved to Indianapolis two years ago and has since been able to experience the arts scene it has to offer.
What is the best part of what you do as an engineer?
The best part of my career as an engineer is solving problems. We take a job where something does not work and we get to find a way to solve it.
Do you believe there are opportunities for engineering and music to intersect?
Not in my field of machine design specifically, but music does help me focus on what I’m doing. I do see the connection between math in engineering and music. Math is very present in music and I know the connection is related to time signatures and being able to count and follow patterns.
What was your most memorable music related experience?
Seeing the Glass Animals for the first time. It was a very small, packed venue. The light show and stage production elements were so well done and it just made for an intense experience.
If you could meet and talk with any artist from any time period, who would it be?
It would be David Bowie. He has the longest, most diverse music career and I would want to know, in general, what his experience was like.
Name an artist that you believe changed music for the better.
Link Wray and his Wray Men. They were one of the first bands to release a popular song with distortion in the guitar (Rumble-1958). This made rock music actual rock music. It even became controversial because it seemed violent due to the title of the song and the sound of the music.
Why do you enjoy collecting vinyl records?
This collection allows me to showcase my interests and connect with artists I support. I like having a physical copy of media.
Do you prefer streaming services or downloaded music?
I have an iTunes library on an iPod separate from my cell phone. I don’t use any streaming services. I like knowing where my music is at all times. There is still a lot of music that you can’t find on streaming services. I like that you can drive through the mountains, or a tunnel, and never worry about losing your connection.
If you could play any instrument what would it be? Additionally, what instrument do you perceive is the most difficult to learn?
I would like to learn to play the piano. Piano is the most versatile instrument. You can work with any genre on that. I think the violin or cello must be the most difficult instrument to learn. An instrument with strings and a bow just seems to take a lot of skill and finesse.
How has music influenced your life?
It has given me the opportunity to meet many different people. It has made it easier to connect with others and make friends. If we share a similar love of music or an artist, we can build a relationship off of that. I have music playing almost every hour of the day; at work, in the car, while working out, taking care of things at home, etc. People would be very different without music. It would be quiet and much harder to connect with people.
How do you feel about classical music?
It is interesting and I can appreciate it. However, I would not listen to it on my own necessarily. I prefer classical music in a live setting. My enjoyment comes from seeing an orchestra or musician play live.
How do you think music benefits communities?
It gives people an outlet for many emotions. Music can be used to celebrate, or even for protest. It provides a cathartic experience.