When Relapse Records approached RTTF about donating all proceeds from the 2017 Relapse Sampler, we were thrilled. And when they asked if the MusiCore students could learn a song from their roster of metal, punk, and industrial bands, Ethan immediately leapt to mind. Now, Ethan and the RTTF House Band are learning the song Bent Nail from shoegaze band Nothing.
Ethan started at RTTF in 2011, when his only musical experience was playing The Beatles: Rock Band. But his mom suspected that “he had drums in his soul.” When she saw an ad for MusiCore, she knew it would be a great way to encourage Ethan’s creativity. Now, Ethan is an accomplished drummer and guitarist, and he has made lasting friendships with other students in the program. “Because of Rock to the Future, I know my son has a future filled with friends and music,” his mom said. “Rock to the Future has given Ethan tools to build a future.”
Ethan has been in the RTTF House Band for the past five years. The House Band relies on teamwork, which Ethan says usually goes smoothly: “We work pretty well. There’s some days, but everything’s been going good so far.” Many of the students are multi-instrumentalists – Ethan places equal emphasis on the drums and guitar. He says both instruments are actually similar, since “they’re both about speed and tempo.” Choosing what instrument each student will play on a song could be a source of conflict, but the students decide together by having a conversation, listening to each other, and working through any issues together. Since Ethan has been in the House Band the longest, he feels responsible for the group. He likes working with his bandmates on stage and off, since they all respect each other: “I know they like what I do.”
Ethan isn’t just working with the House Band; he’s also working on his challenge piece for the Winter Showcase. He’s practicing Rage Against the Machine’s Bulls on Parade; “Me being me, I just looked them up. They’re catchy.” Along with his musical tastes, Ethan’s also pretty famous for his unique, hand-made jackets and vests. First, he looks for inspiration online, then he shops around for supplies. His motto? “Right vest, right patches, right bands.”
Nothing and the RTTF House Band are still fine-tuning Bent Nail. They practiced together for the first time during the Teen Lounge Open House last Friday. Check them out!
If you like their performance, why not download the Relapse Records 2017 Sampler? The sampler is a great overview of the bands on Relapse Records, and 100% of the proceeds from this year’s sampler will be donated to RTTF! Downloading the sampler is another great way to support young musicians like Ethan as they learn the value of dedication, trust, and hard work – on stage and in life!
If you’d like to help us reach out year end fundraising goal, please donate through the link below. All donations made prior to 12/31 will be matched by a generous supporter!