Featured KRK User Ian Keaggy
Pop Rock Band Hot Chelle Rae
Ian Keaggy has a mind rooted in artistic expression. Though his primary gig is as the bass guitarist and backup vocalist for the famed pop rock band Hot Chelle Rae, Keaggy is also an avid photographer, song composer and writer. He lives to inspire others through his creations.
Despite growing up with legendary guitarist Phil Keaggy for a father, Keaggy quickly found his own voice in the music industry. At age 12, he was already playing the piano and asking his father to teach him guitar. By age 16, he was writing songs. "I became confident in who I was as an individual musician around that point, so I kind of jumped right into the Nashville scene and started playing writersí nights," Keaggy says. "From there, it just blossomed."
Soon after, Keaggy became a part of the now hit band Hot Chelle Rae, composing music with fellow musicians Ryan Follesť, Jamie Follesť and Nash Overstreet. The band just wrapped a tour with Carly Rae Jepsen, and though the group plays different venues in different cities every night, Keaggy never tires of performing live in front of a crowd of cheering fans. "It's a bit dizzying, exhilarating and calming at the same time," he says. ďI run out on stage at the beginning of a show, and Iím just mesmerized by the size of the room, and all Iím seeing are iPhone flashes, and I just canít help but smile and be filled with this insane energy."
And Keaggy puts that energy to good use, engaging in frequent writing sessions, band rehearsals, recording sessions and live performances. He relishes the therapeutic release that his artistic expressions allow. "I was always interested in writing, even before my words were intended for songs. In middle school and high school, I avidly wrote in journals, and even wrote poetry, simply because it satisfied a part of me that nothing else could," Keaggy says. "It's not until now, looking back, that I appreciate all the feelings and stories I used to write down, because that really crafted and nurtured my gift for lyricism."
Sticking close to his roots, Keaggy recently purchased a home in Nashville and renovated the basement to create his own, personal home studio. A fan of KRK gear, he uses the KRK VXT6 Active Studio Monitors, the KRK 10s subwoofer and KNS 8400 studio headphones to create tracks for both Hot Chelle Rae and his solo projects. "KRK is just a solid company that makes great products," Keaggy says. "I love the consistency between the headphones and the monitors, which is something I really appreciated once I started writing and producing more out of my own home. I bring a pair of the headphones out on the road with me, and I know that if I use those headphones, when I get back to the studio, my mixes will hold up in the larger format. Knowing that my mixes are going to sound the same is clutch."
Keaggy says he is also a fan of the amazing detail that the VXT6 monitors deliver. "What is so sick is that I can set the cut-off and frequency range on the monitors so that they only deliver 80 Hz and down to the subs and 80 and above to the speakers," Keaggy says. "It gives me a clarity that is so important when I'm trying to get even mixes. It makes the monitors more enjoyable to work with, because I get a really smooth bass response alongside the nice, crisp highs."
Also passionate about photography, Keaggy loves to take professional photos and plans to pursue photography as a side venture to his music. "It's just something that I've always loved, and Iíve always had an eye for it," he says. "Iím really looking forward to this fall, because the band has some time off, and Iíve already reached out and started booking lots of shoots, so I think that this next season is going to be a really good part of my life."