A talented, teenage band expresses moods with music beyond the halls of ELHS.
By Ella Bradley
Perhaps to those born before the ‘80’s, or outside of East Lyme, the term “joyride” might conjure up thoughts of reckless driving or an old-school horror movie.
But to the ELHS community, Joyride is a student rock and blues band. Featuring long-established friends who share a love of music, Joyride showcases the talent and dedication of juniors Andrew Giegel on bass guitar, Brody Monarca on lead guitar and vocals, and Owen Rodgers on drums. Junior Ian Aldrich also plays piano for the band when needed.
“Owen and I played during the commons decorating when I was a sophomore; that’s how most of this started,” said Monarca.
Since their beginnings- leading the Class of 2019 to victory in commons decorating, portraying a band of the ‘60s, the group has only gained success. The trio jams out to recognized covers and creates songs of their own, blending their unique style, rhythm, and arrangements for the listening satisfaction of all in earshot.
Their performance at the Holiday Extravaganza rocked the stage and got plenty of audience approval with a set that delivered inspired versions of “Please Come Home for Christmas” and “Are You Gonna Be My Girl.”
“This is definitely something I’m very passionate about, and we had a lot of fun playing in the Extravaganza,” reflected Rodgers.
Their passion was obvious at their December mini-concert and captivated old and new fans alike.
“It’s stressful to get everything organized ahead of time, but on the day of the Extravaganza, you just go on stage, do the song, and have fun with it,” said Monarca.
The band practices regularly to refine their sound, share in band decision making, and create more music.
“Our parents help with transportation and everything else such as scheduling and supporting us every step of the way,” said Rodgers.
Almost every other weekend, Joyride jams are sure to be heard emitting from the one of the families’ homes.
“To practice (for the Extravaganza), Owen and I wrote out and found parts on the internet for the songs, gave them to the other musicians, and had them practice by themselves. Then we held a few collective rehearsals the weeks before the Extravaganza,” explained Monarca.
Joyride was not a top choice for the name of the band, “but it grew on us the minute it was thought of,” said Rodgers. While they display anything but recklessness like the definition alludes, they’ve fully adopted the name as their own.
“We hope to continue making music in the coming years, and we’re glad to be a part of the East Lyme High School community,” said Rodgers.