Rocking out on the weekend
Student musicians and their bands take their talents to the stage.
February 23, 2017
He begins to open the over-sized boxes that were just shipped to his house. He already knows what’s inside, yet excitement still overwhelms him.
Sophomore Jack Windler was ten years old when he received his first drum set for his birthday.
“It was like Christmas,” Windler said. “The feeling of opening a drum set and seeing the color and the set itself for the first time is indescribable.”
That set the stage for his drumming career. Now, he is playing his favorite songs in front of hundreds, sometimes even thousands.
“I never thought that I would ever join a band and be playing in big venues,” Windler said.
He started out his drumming career playing at church and practicing various Mass songs on his drum set at home. Then, Windler evolved from soft Gospel to hard rock. He took a year of lessons at Mozingo Music, where he met his current band mates.
“We thought we were all pretty talented,” Windler said, “so we got together and formed the band.”
The Brink, as they call themselves, plays anywhere from 1970’s to current era rock ‘n roll.
Windler’s job as a drummer is to keep the beat throughout the course of the song. However, when covering famous songs like “Basket Case” by Green Day or “Working Man” by Rush, he knows that he has the free will to do whatever he wants with the song.
He and his band have played over 20 performances at venues like Cicero’s, Blueberry Hill and Sky Music Lounge. His favorite of them all was in Ballpark Village, where he played in front of 1,200 people, something that he thought he could only do in his dreams.
Jamming a set list in front of friends, family and complete strangers with his band mates is all he could have ever asked for.
“A lot of people think that it would be nerve-wrecking to play in front of that many people,” Windler said. “But we’re just jamming and having fun. We don’t really notice that anybody is out there. We’re just doing what we love.”
The crowd is wild, crazy, they are jumping on top of each other, but he is calm, cool and collected. His heart is pounding as he walks on stage and into the light. He picks up the guitar and strums it a few times. The music blares as he feels the sound of the bass in his chest while the crowd screams.
Sophomore Jeff Patterson lives for that rush. That is why he started his band Broken Concrete.
All through his life Patterson has loved music. He taught himself how to play piano, drums, trombone, bass, the ukulele and the guitar.
In Broken Concrete, he prefers to stick with one instrument as the band’s lead guitarist. Also in the band is a rhythm guitarist, a bass player and a drummer.
The band plays in restaurants, bars and has even competed at a few Battle of the Bands at different schools. The bands typically gets paid for their gigs, but for Patterson, it’s not about the money.
“It’s not about where I’m going, It’s about what I’m doing right now,” Patterson said. “And right now I’m just having fun.”
Stage fright is a stranger to Patterson. Instead, he’s the band’s motivator before every show. He usually gives a small pep talk to his band as a pre-show ritual. He puts himself into an on stage mind set.
“It’s really about being a performer,” Patterson said. “It’s my job to put a little bit of my passion into every strum of the guitar.”
Patterson does not want to be a rockstar that lives in the glory of fans. All of the other bands are celebrating and talking to other people who are telling them how great they were, but Patterson doesn’t want any of that. He plays his music for people and for the fun of it.
“The music that I play isn’t for me,” Patterson said. “It’s for the people I’m playing for.”