“You know, Kyle, we never thought you’d be at a music school,” my dad said. “You never liked piano lessons.” That was entirely true. I hated piano lessons. I did, however, love to play the viola. Music class was always my outlet at school, ever since the elementary level, when I started playing. When I look back now, I can see that the reason I hated piano lessons was because I wasn’t making music there. I was learning to read and press keys. I’m taking piano classes at Berklee now, and I love it! It feels naturally expressive now that I am viewing it from a new perspective.
I played viola from fourth grade through my senior year of high school. I sat first chair every year until I got to high school, and considered myself a leader of the section. I played strong and proud, even during the difficult sections of music. It was in tenth grade that I discovered the bass. Yes, I’d always heard the bass in the back of the orchestra, and I guess I always thought it would be cool to play, but I finally landed on the bass guitar at the beginning of tenth grade. My best friend at the time was a guitarist, and I figured it would be cool to accompany him on the bass. I had no idea what I was getting myself into.
I had a love for music before I started playing bass. I loved music class; it was my outlet. I liked listening to music, too. My older sisters always listened to 90’s pop songs on the radio, and I really enjoyed learning the harmonies and singing along. It hadn’t ever crossed my mind that I would develop as much appreciation for music as I have. When I picked up that bass, it was hard to put down. Not just the first time, but every time I touched it. I still feel that way, which is a good thing, since I often play 6 to 8 hours per day while I’m at Berklee.
People here often ask me, “What style of music do you like to play?” That is a tricky one to answer. This month, I have rehearsals where I will be playing celtic rock, blues, pop, singer/songwriter, synth-rock, latin, swing, punk, and reggae. Last semester, I played in a metal band, too. I worked over the summer as a bassist in a country band at Hershey Park, and I just obtained a different summer job playing upright bass on a cruise ship. Many Berklee students will claim that they enjoy playing “everything.” But I’m not sure if everyone means it like I do. I really, truly, honestly enjoy playing all those kinds of music. Sure, perhaps it isn’t everything, but I feel like its pretty close.
If you’d asked me three years ago what I would be doing at this point in my life, I have no idea what I would have told you. I was a junior in high school at that time, probably assuming I would be going to college for some career in mathematics. Fortunately, I am here at Berklee instead. I love the music, I love the challenges, I love the people, and I love looking at my calendar and seeing just how much I have on my plate for the next day. I am optimistic about what the future holds for me, and I’m grateful that Berklee has given me a chance to realize the life I was meant to live.
Experience & Education
Office Assistant for Berklee Music Education DepartmentJanuary 2009 to Present (about 10 years)
I assist with needs around the office, such as labeling instruments, signing out instruments, making copies, and doing paperwork.
Bassist - Boardwalkers for Hershey Park, PennsylvaniaAugust 2010 to August 2010 (less than a month)
I was hired as a substitute bassist late in August for the Boardwalkers of Hershey Park. We played classic rock tunes every day in the Boardwalk!
Bassist/Vocalist - Frontier Frenzy for Hershey Park, PennsylvaniaMay 2010 to August 2010 (3 months)
I was hired to play bass in the country group at Hershey Park. We brought a hoedown to the Country Grill every day of the Summer!
BA in Music Education at Berklee College of Music2008 to 2012 (4 years)