AIKEN, SC – On Friday morning, September 29th, several hundred musicians and singers from South Aiken High School were treated to a mini concert and Q&A session with members of The British Invasion Years. The band’s one hour community outreach program moderated by bassist Bobby M, featured each member sharing what ignited their passion for music, advice for the budding musician, and of course, live music.
“I was amazed at just how familiar these kids are with the music we play”, explained Bobby. “I’d say that demonstrates how great music really is timeless”. Keyboardist/Guitarist Jon Wolf observed, “Today, music was the common thread that brought two generations together for a fantastic, memorable time”.
The Boys captivated and connected with the younger audience through their own personal stories, which students seemed to easily relate to. “Musicians and singers today face many of the same challenges as us when we started out, and with the advent of social media, their job is even tougher when it comes to standing out above the rest”, explained guitarist Lee Scott Howard.
The band launched into some Beatles and Rolling Stones gems, as well as a tune familiar to the crowd– The Monkees’ “I’m A Believer”, which was also performed by Smash Mouth decades later for the movie “Shrek”. However, the students refused to let the show end there.
Everyone got up on their feet and danced in the aisles for a rousing encore of “Twist and Shout”. But even that was not enough for this enthusiastic crowd. A young drummer in the audience requested The Beatles’ “Yellow Submarine” to which the audience cheered wildly. There was only one problem, the band had never played it before. But after a quick huddle, the band obliged much to the delight of all. That gesture, in and of itself, drove home a point Bobby made that musicians need to “make it about the audience, not them”.
Howard summed it all up this way, “You’d think coming to a new area and selling out back to back shows would be amazing. But in total honesty, reaching out to mentor young musicians and singers was the absolute high point of our trip”.
As the program finally drew to a close (long past the bell), and the impromptu photo ops began, everyone in attendance readily agreed: the kids are alright.
Thanks to photographer Larry Gleason firstname.lastname@example.org See more of his photos on our Instagram feed.