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April 15, 2013

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MRH Jazz Band Jams with Local Musician

In an effort to teach students more about music, Career Director John Capuano brought in local St. Louis musician Pierce Crask. Crask played the guitar along with several other instruments with a section of the MRH high school band: juniors Zach Arias and John O’Keefe, freshman Dylan Kiefer and sophomore Paul Meuser. The students performed in the band room with Crask in front of several MRH middle school students and a few high school students. Not only did the some students have a spectacular time playing with Pierce, but they also got the chance to learn professional techniques. Junior Zach Arias says that jamming with Pierce wasn’t only cool, but also interesting to learn too. “Playing with Pierce was cool because he brings a lot to the table that I’m not really familiar with,” said Arias.

Junior John O’Keefe said that is was cool also and that it was good that his middle school students got to learn new things from this performance.  “It was really cool to be able to do a jam session with Pierce,” said O’Keefe. “It was the second time that we had worked with him and this time we had a little bit more of a repertoire going into it. We had talked Zach and I both some of our students some of his songs and they got to play along, which was a really good experience for them,” O’Keefe said.

This was the second time Crask came in to visit and teach the students. Crask came to MRH earlier in the year when he told students about his career. The students got the chance to learn and ask a lot of questions. Before Pierce came in for the second time the band students taught each other some of Crask’s music to prepare themselves for the second time he would come in.

According to Capuano, the visit gave students the opportunity to expand their knowledge. “This was a follow up jam session to kind of push their limits and have them work their musical skill to a higher level,” said Capuano. Crask taught several great techniques to learn and brought brand new skills to teach the students. This was not only a great learning experience, but it was also a big leap from playing with each other to playing with someone who has played for a living and played what he loved.

Story by Isiah Grey

For more information, contact MRH School District at (314) 644-4400.