Coming into his first year at Cal Poly, industrial engineering senior Logan Kregness was in search of a place to express himself creatively. A poet-turned-rapper, Kregness wanted a community that would foster his talents and push him as an artist.

After meeting musicians in his residence hall, Kregness realized he wasn’t alone in this search. Much to his surprise, no organizations other than Cal Poly bands existed to celebrate the student body’s affinity for making music.

Kregness took it upon himself to create this space, and in Spring 2014 he began the Music Production Union (MPU).

What started as a group of about 10 students from the Santa Lucia residence hall has now expanded to a flood of artists of all trades, skill-levels and backgrounds collaborating every Monday night from 8-10 p.m. in the lower level of Graphic Arts (building 26).

Whether students want to offer their voices or lyrics for a producer’s new track, jam out to classic hits or present their original work, MPU encourages any and all acts of musical creativity.

“This is an extremely friendly and uplifting environment, and although I still get horrible nerves when performing, this club has helped me tremendously in breaking out of my shell,” biochemistry junior Janine Bach said. “This is the place to experiment, find new friends, new music and yourself.”

MPU members gain much more than musical skill in the club. For some, like singer-songwriter Bach, it’s the confidence to present their art in public. For others, like anthropology and geography junior and guitar player CJ Salyer, it’s lifelong friendships with people who share similar interests and values.

“MPU has introduced me to so many great people,” Salyer said. “Not only do I have people I can hit up any day of the week to jam with, but I’ve met people I can rely on and call my friends.”

People can catch a glimpse of MPU at one of their quarterly shows in the University Union Plaza, or watch their rap and production group “Flak Mob” headline a show at SLO Donut Co. this winter.

Also in the works is “Operation: Hip Hop,” possibly MPU’s biggest event that will feature student rappers, breakdancers and DJs in Chumash Auditorium
on Feb. 10.

For those looking to get immersed in Cal Poly’s music scene free of charge, join MPU’s Facebook page or email mpu@calpoly.edu to get on the
mailing list.

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