SHELL ROCK, Iowa - It's something you might expect to find tucked away in the Hollywood Hills, but instead, this business nestled into Main Street USA, in Butler County. What they make at Chandler Limited is hitting the right note with big names in music.
Katy Perry, Adele, Maroon 5, Beyonce, and Lady GaGa have all used musical gear made in Eastern Iowa to produce their hit songs.
"This is based on the mic preamp from the Beatles desk," said Wade Goeke, showing TV-9 one of the pieces of equipment made at Chandler Limited. The company was founded on a sound that Goeke knew played a major role in music history, and the future of music as well.
"We have a contract with EMI, the Beatles record company, to reproduce the equipment," said Goeke.
He moved to California after High school, started tinkering with equipment and mimicking that all important Beatles Sound, and thus Chandler Limited was born.
"You have to do this by hand. All the old stuff was made this way," he said.
The company is housed in an unassuming storefront in downtown Shell Rock. Chandler Limited has more than 20 employees soldering, wiring, and assembling the guts of gear. Many of his employees are musicians in their own right. "He's a singer and guitar player, and he just started actually," said Goeke, referring to one of his employees soldering together a board.
The people who work there appreciate what they're making, as it's gear they would use in their own bands. The assembly is intricate. It takes one person a full work week to assemble the board, then another week to put the final product together. The Chandler Limited equipment is now in recording studios, and traveling with band around the globe.
"If you look inside an old piece of gear, it was art inside," said Goeke. "We do everything by hand like it would've been made in 1968."