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COIN: From a leap of faith to Live on the Green

From the Belmont stage to Live on the Green, Belmont band COIN proved making it in music is not all about the destination but about the journey as well.

It all started in a Belmont Music Theory class when Chase Lawrence took a leap of faith and asked the student next to him, Joe Memmel, if he wanted to write with him. A couple sessions and additions later, they, along with Zachary Dyke and Ryan Winnen, formed the Belmont-alumni band, COIN.

Belmont’s 2012 Rock Showcase was a stepping stone for COIN, opening up a world of new opportunities. The band credits the start of its career to the showcase, noting that everything “snowballed from there.”

Two nights later, the band was playing a sold-out show at popular Nashville music venue, The End.

“I often underplay the significance of the Rock Showcase in our career,” Lawrence said. “I can pretty confidently say we wouldn’t be where we are without it.”

Though playing shows and gaining publicity was important, Lawrence attributes some of the band’s knowledge and success to Belmont classes.

“Copyright Law and Music Publishing taught me the most practical and useful knowledge for my career. I wish I would’ve paid a lot more attention in my A&R class. It seemed useless at the time, but wow, I am pretty confused about what happens in the budget department at Columbia Records.”

“COIN is by no means an overnight sensation,” said Lawrence.

The band’s journey has had its share of struggles in the face of unpredictability in the music industry.

“Between pleasing the public and last minute fly dates, the uncertainty is enough to kill me. But, when we step on stage and see those eager music appreciators, it all makes sense for a moment,” Lawrence said. “There is truly no other medium like it.”

From Music Theory class to Belmont’s Rock Showcase to Nashville’s Live on the Green, COIN is a depiction of one path from Belmont student to professional artist and the dedication required to make it in the Nashville music industry.

For the young Belmont musician whose aspirations match that of a younger Lawrence, he has a few words of wisdom.

“Read as much as possible, and write new songs every day. Write the good songs, the bad songs and when you’re lucky, write the great songs,” he said.

This article was written by Kelby Bibler and Reed Ferguson.

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