Back from Music City, Ohio musician finds success on TV; SV grads in video on NCAA broadcasts

By KAREN MUNDY, The Press-News Published:

CANTON -- Matthew "Lig" Knobe loves being involved in the music scene in Nashville, Tenn. However, in the last couple of months, his home state of Ohio has been bestowing more success on him than he thought possible.

Knobe, who says he has been involved in rock music just about his entire life, graduated from Hudson High School and Kent State University. He moved to Nashville, where he had lived for a little more than seven years. While there, he found success as a musician, songwriter and producer. He worked with several music companies including Banshee Music, the band My Red Umbrella and founded Pretty Like Oxygen Music & Entertainment.

Over the years, he has worked with and met a lot of familiar names in the music business such as Kid Rock and Lyle Lovett and began his own rock band, Ligion.

Feeling like he had "been on the road for the last seven years," Knobe recently decided to return to his home state in hopes of slowing down a little. However, his plans did not quite work out as he expected.

Last summer he wrote a fast-paced, fun song called "Get Off Your Seat." Initially it seemed as if the song would go nowhere. Fate intervened on December 29, when the president of Fox Sports heard the song and considered using it during the network's televising of National Collegiate Athletic Association basketball games.

Knobe received a call from Fox asking for a video submission by Monday, Jan. 3, meaning he had five days to coordinate a band, film crew, extras for the video and a place to film. To make matters more complicated, all of this had to be done over a holiday weekend.

"I told him it was a holiday weekend and I was in Ohio," Knobe said. He was told to "figure it out," and that is exactly what he did.

With the help of his friend, Beau Miller, Knobe was able to get the video filmed in Canton at what is being called the "AE Industrial Arts Complex." Sandy Valley graduate David McDowell has his art studio in the building, and he was thrilled to see the area continue to promote creativity.

McDowell said the Stark County area is "in the middle of an arts renaissance," with the arts district and popular First Friday's all being located in Canton. Along with McDowell, other Sandy Valley graduates involved in the video were Joe Siebert and Mike Coates.

Though he was the jack of all trades -- singer, song writer and producer, Knobe appreciated the hospitality and helpfulness he received in the area. Along with his singing and guitar playing, he was accompanied by drummer Eric Baltrinic. Engineering and co-production credit for the track go to Jon Johnson. StoneKap Productions, Ltd., of Canton was the production company responsible for the filming.

With the help of a few friends, Knobe was able to get more than 40 extras to come out on New Years Day to work from 8 p.m. until about 2 a.m. on the video.

"This is the most fun I have ever had doing a video. It was incredible," Knobe said. "I have done videos in New York City, but they were not as much fun as this one. People showed up in costumes. It was an awesome time."

All the hard work and last minute planning paid off as Knobe and the group were able to produce a video with a lot of energy, enthusiasm and a bit of weird humor -- just what fans may see at a NCAA basketball game. As they say -- the rest is history.

Fox Sports executives liked what they saw, and now the video, along with game highlights, are being shown before and during college basketball events. Knobe is working on other songs such as "We B Crazy" and has been contacted by other sports and television venues who have an interest in his talents.

Meanwhile, "Get Off Your Seat" can be seen and followed on Fox Sports as well as on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter. The link to YouTube is http://www.youtube.com/watch and to Facebook is http://www.facebook.com/pages/My-Red-Umbrella.

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