Back in February, Human Resources bass player and vocalist Aaron Utterback took over social media duties for Charleston’s Lo-Fi Brewing. That in itself isn’t exactly newsworthy, but what Aaron has been doing with Lo-Fi’s social media certainly is. Every day that the Lo-Fi taproom is open (Thursday through Sunday), Aaron records an original 15-second audio clip and shares it on the brewery’s Facebook and Instagram stories.
“When I was brainstorming what our voice would be I knew it needed to be as unique/embracing of the beautiful weirdness in the universe as the brewery and its branding already were,” Aaron says. “It couldn’t just be pictures of people drinking beer and playing with their dogs by the marsh smashed through a VSCO filter. The product and brand already speak for themselves so I knew it had to be something that would supplement vs re-orient the brand in any way. And most people don’t look at Instagram (a visual platform) and think, ‘Let’s embrace the audio component of this experience,’ so the niche was there.”
The name of the brewery itself is tied to music, and in the three or so years since launching, Lo-Fi has formed ties with the local music scene that continue to grow. From hosting impromptu Bill Wilson jam sessions to bringing in Rayland Baxter and a full sound rig back in December, Lo-Fi has carved out a space for itself as Charleston’s brewery hub for local music. Now, with Utterback at the marketing helm, Lo-Fi is able to further tie its pink unicorn aesthetic to music.
According to Aaron, prior to coming up with the idea to create original audio clips for Lo-Fi’s social media, he spent some time researching the tactics of his favorite oddball marketers, and he kept coming back to the way that Adult Swim incorporates music into the text-based messaging between their shows. Aaron already had the means and know-how for recording music at home, so once the inspiration struck he was able to get started right away. Many Human Resources songs start out as demos that Aaron records his office, and he treats the Lo-Fi social media clips as a creative exercise in the same regard.
“I essentially turned it into a little exercise where I take twenty minutes and try to make something,” Aaron explains. “It’s not always great but it’s a fun thing that changes every day. I get a lot of reactions to the story from followers saying, ‘I like this one,’ or even get an occasional ‘meh, not your best,’ but that’s the fun of the engagement.”
As of my writing this, there are more than 30 unique audio clips that have made their way onto the Lo-Fi social media stories. They’re all saved in the story highlights section of the Lo-Fi Instagram, and that archive is only going to grow as Aaron continues to record and share them. There are a ton of different vibes in there, from indie and surf rock to hip-hop and electronica, depending on how Aaron’s feeling at the time of recording. Reading between the lines here, I’d say there’s a good chance that we’ll hear some of these tones in more developed forms on future releases from Human Resources.
Check out @lofibrewing on Instagram to hear some of Aaron’s beats, and stop by the taproom at 2038 Meeting Street Rd from Thursday to Sunday to experience the pink unicorns for yourself. The Lo-Fi taproom is known to play music at a louder volume than what you’d typically expect from a brewery, and they’ve always got something good in rotation, both on tap and through the speakers.