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Cleveland composer Jake Fader

New Year, New Sound: Cleveland Composer Creates Songs for Ohio Tourism Campaign

What does a state sound like?

The answer to this aural riddle is exactly what Jake Fader set out to find.

A touring-guitarist-turned-music-producer, Fader has created compositions featured in television commercials, films, and binge-worthy streaming series. Based in Cleveland, Fader Music & Sound has created original songs that can be heard in the Netflix originals Ugly Delicious and Abstract: The Art of Design, as well as the award-winning documentary Romeo is Bleeding.

And his portfolio of work now also includes a melody that serves as an audio signature for the state of Ohio.

“TourismOhio commissioned Fader Music of Cleveland to create a uniquely Ohio package of music to enhance the experiences for visitors,” said Matt MacLaren, director of TourismOhio. “Music can enhance an experience or transport us in time. We want people to be thinking of Ohio with every new experience they share with family and friends.”

The song will be featured in new Ohio. Find It Here. television and radio commercials in 2019.

Translating the essence of a state into notes and rhythms, Fader was tasked with painting a picture of Ohio—preferably in 3 seconds or less.

“I wanted something that, as soon as someone heard it, it was going to be Ohio,” he said. “My process was I wrote melody lines and tags that people would be able to recognize.”

Approximately 150 melodies later, it was time for Fader to select options for the final version—a decision that required an extra set of ears.

“My son was 3 at the time, and there was one melody that he kept singing back,” Fader said. “So, I said, ‘Okay, my 3-year-old likes it, and he can recall it very easily. That’s the one.’”

A similar process was then carried out on a larger scale by the TourismOhio staff. Three of Fader’s melodies were taken to communities throughout Ohio, where, over the course of eight focus groups, feedback was collected from listeners in Cincinnati, Trumbull County, Mansfield, Lima, and beyond.

The goal was to find the melody that would best resonate with an audience—the one that had the best chance of sticking with people and being recalled. Once a clear standout was selected, it was off to the Fader Music & Sound recording studio to transform the sample concept into what can be heard today.

Teaming up with local musicians, Fader created eight versions of the song spanning multiple genres for different uses. Although the instrumentation differs for each track, listeners will clearly hear the Ohio. Find It Here. signature melody, which ties the series together.

Fader said he hopes the songs showcase both the talent and versatility of artists living and working in the state of Ohio, as well as the ways music can connect communities.

“I am most excited for people to hear the talented musicians who played on this (and) the hard work that was put into it by everybody,” he said. “Maybe if they hear that this signature is applicable across different genres, it might show people how diverse we really are. I hope people embrace it as something that represents our state and the diversity we have here, which I think is one of our greatest attributes.”

For more information about Fader Music & Sound, visit

Check out the new songs in action in some of TourismOhio’s newest videos:

TourismOhio, operating within the state of Ohio's Development Services Agency, works to ensure Ohio is positioned as a destination of choice, enriching lives through authentic travel experiences. The branding, Ohio. Find It Here., supports Ohio's $44 billion tourism industry. For more, visit

The Ohio Arts Council is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically. Connect with the OAC on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, or visit our website at


Article by Amanda Etchison, Communications Strategist
Videos by TourismOhio

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