Young band creates and competes with their musicNISSWA, Minn. (AP) — Forget Ringo, Paul, John and George.
By: JODIE TWEED, Brainerd Dispatch
NISSWA, Minn. (AP) — Forget Ringo, Paul, John and George.
Meet Tanner, Danny, Josiah and Nick — the musical foursome known as Offside.
The band members are 9 and 10 years old — so young that they make pop singers Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus look ancient.
But the four boys, all friends and fellow hockey players, have big dreams and have been working hard for the last two months to make those dreams come true. They've written their own songs and practice together for a couple hours every Saturday.
Their first "gig" will be in the annual Nisswa Elementary School variety show in June. The group is the closing act for the variety show and they hope to dazzle their classmates with their music, but also with a fog machine, a siren and strobe lights during their performance. They'll be performing three musical selections, including a couple of original songs.
Danny Olson, 9, a Nisswa third-grader and the son of Holly and Chris Olson of Nisswa, approached three of his friends about starting the band. He's been playing piano for the past four years. He plays keyboard in the group.
"I asked them if they wanted to make some music and they agreed," Olson explained. "It's fun, we all like music. We put a lot of effort into it. When you get really good, it feels good."
Other band members include Tanner Larson, 10, a Nisswa fourth-grader and the son of Kim and Colette Larson of Nisswa, who plays electric guitar; Josiah Klang, 9, a Nisswa third-grader and the son of Eric and Annette Klang of rural Brainerd, who plays the drums; and Nick Hastings, 9, a Nisswa third-grader and the son of Pat and Teri Hastings of Lake Shore, who plays tambourine and sings.
The boys practice in Klang's bedroom, which he shares with his 6-year-old brother, Jed, who usually is booted out during rehearsals.
They said they like classic rock, like AC/DC and Led Zeppelin. But their parents hope they stick with songs like "Rockin' Robin" for a while.
"I just passed it off at first," Holly Olson said of the band her son started. "But Danny's been playing piano for four years and he's just so serious about it. I think it's great, I really do."
Klang also has taken four years of piano lessons. The two boys plan to perform piano solos at the upcoming variety show, in addition to performing with Offside.
"They just love it, it's really cute," said Annette Klang, of her son's band. "They play pretty much the whole time, then come upstairs and have cookies and leave. They all seem to have intensely driven personalities and they do well in whatever they do. They really are very decent for being only 9 and 10 years old."
"Danny has told kids that they're going to go pro," Holly Olson said with a smile.
Band members said they hope to one day perform in concerts in the area and are thinking about entering the Crow Wing County Fair talent contest later this summer.