Vocalist and keys player Frank Shelton and guitarist Crawford Lyons discussed what they think sets Berklee College of Music aside from other top music schools in the United States.

The first element that both Shelton and Lyons mentioned was the Berklee administration’s flexibility on, specifically, students’ abilities to read sheet music, or as Shelton called it: a “non-classical” approach. A number of Berklee students are self-taught musicians or have had no “formal” lessons or training, which is usually expected of top-notch music school candidates. For Lyons, this sense of “acceptance” especially compelled him to enroll.

Shelton, an Indianapolis native, and Lyons, a Nashville native, are both third-year students at Berklee. They met one another, along with saxophonist Zander Sugarman, in a guidance course their first semester. The three of them bonded over an interest in classic rock music; Shelton and Lyons had begun writing songs together, which would be the beginning of their rock-fusion band: Indiana Heights.

Shelton, Lyons and Sugarman would eventually recruit drummer Billy Bernstein and bassist Myles Clemons, who had known one another from a different introductory-level course their first year.

Since Indiana Heights’ establishment, the five members have found a sense of both self and group motivation and an opportunity for the application of their music education. They value the band as their collaborative musical pursuit and have similar goals, even though they “all do different things” individually, as Lyons said.

Indiana Heights released their debut album in the fall of 2018. The Spotify URL is embedded below: