Music To Your Beers

I was kinda thrilled to hear the melodious voice of conductor Bill Eddins on the Marketplace Morning Report this morning. Bill had written the Sticks and Drones blog here on Inside the Arts alongside Ron Spigelman for a number of years.

Bill was on Marketplace talking about MetroNOME, the brewery he started in St. Paul, MN. Their goal is to funnel proceeds from sales into local music education programs.

Eddins and his co-founder, Matt Engstrom, aspire to grow their business to the size of a small regional brewery. When their goal is realized, they plan to filter funding from the brewery toward local music education programs.

“We believe that we would be able to funnel as much as half a million or even maybe a million dollars a year into the local music education programs here in the Twin Cities metro,” said Eddins.

MetroNOME has already racked up close to 400 performances at their brewery, including a concert with jazz legend Wynton Marsalis. True to his music education philosophy, Eddins recruited a trio young musicians, two of whom were too young to drink his product, to play with Marsalis.

Eddins admits he and his partner don’t necessarily have the acumen and experience to take the organization to the level it needs to in order to generate the funds required to support local music education, but he believes there are people in the Twin Cities area that can help make it happen.

They do, however, have a secret ingredient that provides a competitive advantage. I encourage everyone to watch the video on their homepage. It starts out looking like a typical brewery video, but it takes an entertaining turn. My thanks to Drew McManus for nudging me to watch the video.

About Joe Patti

I have been writing Butts in the Seats (BitS) on topics of arts and cultural administration since 2004 (yikes!). Given the ever evolving concerns facing the sector, I have yet to exhaust the available subject matter. In addition to BitS, I am a founding contributor to the ArtsHacker ( website where I focus on topics related to boards, law, governance, policy and practice.

I am also an evangelist for the effort to Build Public Will For Arts and Culture being helmed by Arts Midwest and the Metropolitan Group. (

My most recent role was as Executive Director of the Grand Opera House in Macon, GA.

Among the things I am most proud are having produced an opera in the Hawaiian language and a dance drama about Hawaii's snow goddess Poli'ahu while working as a Theater Manager in Hawaii. Though there are many more highlights than there is space here to list.


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