A group of originators working for a Michigan mortgage lender put together a band, practiced in the drummer's basement for six months and made it all the way to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Bryan Stapp, Brian Macias, Eric Rowland, and Brian Jeffery comprise the band The Loaners; all four are employees of Quicken Loans and Rock Financial.
Parallel careers in music and mortgages culminated in the four musicians finding themselves playing at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum after only six months of practicing in the drummer's basement.
After playing to a standing-room-only crowd at the Hall of Fame in Cleveland, Ohio, for the final contest in October, The Loaners took second place. Judges for the event included G.E. Smith, formerly the leader of the "Saturday Night Live" band, and Jeff Carlisi, former lead guitarist of 38 Special.
They submitted a demo CD to Fortune Magazine's Corporate Battle of the Bands and were one of 18 chosen out of a pool of 42 bands to play both regionally -- taking first place, then nationally.
Quicken CEO Bill Emerson said it's been a lot of fun for the company and for the band. He said the company picks up all the incidental costs such as the entry fees, transportation and hotel for the band and its corporate entourage, which included 200 people for the finals in Cleveland. "We knew they would have fun," Emerson told MortgageDaily.com. "And we wanted to support these guys."
"To go from playing in someone's basement to playing in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in just six months is simply incredible," he added. "Every year we do an awards ceremony and do auditions for people who want to participate. It's amazing to see the amount of talent within the company."
It's no wonder Livonia, Mich.-based Quicken Loans and Rock Financial found themselves at No. 12 on Fortune's 100 Best Places to Work last year.
And it's no surprise that the band is to be a part of the company's college campus recruiting drive.
Stapp, marketing director for Quicken Loans said the band plans to perform at university campuses to aid recruitment as the company continues to add about 150 mortgage bankers a month.
Although The Loaners, found on the Web at www.TheLoaners.com, have made headlines with corporate events and charity gigs, front man and rhythm guitarist Brian Macias pointed out they are just a regular band with a fortunate set of circumstances.
"We have great day jobs so we are definitely not in it for the money," Macias told MortgageDaily.com. "As a working band with real gigs we donate all money earned to charity; and to date we have raised around $10,000 for charities such as cancer research, Katrina victims, and children's organizations."