The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

Subscribe to the Newsletter
As students walk the halls on their way to their classes, theyre reminded that there are staff who are safe to tell. If they are experiencing abuse, harassment, mental health declines or other struggles, they can reach out to the teachers who have these teal ribbons displayed in their classrooms.
If you’re being harassed, look around for the Safe2Tell stickers
Grace Lovely, Guest Writer • June 8, 2024

You were sitting in class, getting ready for the test that you were about to take. You felt something on your arm, but you brushed it off. It...

Its the last week of school, and Saul Quintero and Anderson Flores Aguilar are glad. Together, they study for their final exam in English so that they can finish it on time.
Foreign exchange students experience fewer school restrictions in the United States
Ashley Lopez, Guest Writer • June 8, 2024

Imagine stepping into another country where the cultural tradition, education system and even daily life are different from what you were used...

From helpful to harmful: AI’s interference in the classroom
From helpful to harmful: AI’s interference in the classroom
Alexander Velo and Finn BankstonJune 8, 2024

Since the dawn of technology, the concept of Artificial Intelligence (AI) has intrigued the technology and science community. It started with...

Student musicians gain early experience in Kalamazoo and prepare themselves for future careers

Credit: Derek Ketchum
Annabelle Fuerst (left) and Payton Carter (right) performing at Old Dog Tavern while opening for the Corn Fed Girls.

In Kalamazoo, young musicians are opening for popular bands, performing every week and writing and producing music at a professional level. The surplus of bands in Kalamazoo composed of high school and college students indicates how large the music-making scene is among Kalamazoo youth. 

Opportunities like the Kalamazoo Academy of Rock (KAR) and the Kalamazoo Music School are two of the organizations uplifting the music scene for young people, producing talented and hard-working musicians. 

Annabelle Fuerst produces first album

Senior Annabelle Fuerst produced her first album “For the Willows” this March, along with musical partner Payton Carter, who is a freshman at the University of Michigan this year. 

Fuerst credits her musical parents for giving her the opportunities she needed to produce an album at such a young age. She has been a classically trained cellist since 6 years old, so she uses her prior skills to excel in guitar and bass. 

“I played cello for a long time. I was in [Kalamazoo] Junior Symphony Orchestra and school orchestra, but I kind of abandoned that when I started guitar,” said Fuerst.

Fuerst explains that even though she does not play cello as often as she did in the past, she still uses the skills she gained from the instrument and played cello on her album. 

Fuerst explained that the creative process was never the same for each song. She decided to incorporate her cello playing to add a classical element.

“In terms of production, a lot of it was on the fly. We walked in with an idea of, like, we wanted this song to sound like this, that song to sound like that, but a lot of it was in the moment, like, ‘oh this instrument would sound cool here,’” Fuerst said.

An important part of being a professional musician is the ability to perform well on stage and make meaningful connections with the audience. Achieving good stage presence is something that many artists struggle with and are judged by. 

Fuerst has gotten more comfortable on stage with time. The transition from being a classically trained cellist to a singer/songwriter has had the largest impact on the way she presents herself on stage.

“When I started performing, I was like a stick. I was classically trained and stage presence wasn’t really a part of that, but I feel like I’ve improved recently,” said Fuerst.

Will Murphy plays show with his band Flower God. This show took place over the summer at Old Dog Tavern. (Credit: Leo Port)

Will Murphy says playing music is the biggest part of his life

Senior William Murphy is another young musician. He’s played piano since he was three years old and drums since he was five. Murphy explains that music is one of the biggest parts of his life and part of his personality.

“I mean it’s everything: it kind of is my everything. Definitely, I could talk about it all day. It just gives me a feeling that nothing else gives me,” said Murphy. “It’s really given me my outlet to being a human being.”

Murphy expressed his love for performing on stage, saying performing feels natural to him and has found that connecting with the audience is necessary for a good show.

“I like to give people a release. I always say there are smart people who are going to go find the cure for cancer, but on a Friday night those people need a release, they need to go out and have a good time, and that’s what my purpose is,” said Murphy. 

Being a part of KAR for ten years, Murphy expressed that he was having difficulty finding people he truly loved to play music with until his high school sessions at KAR. He wouldn’t be where he is today as a musician without that opportunity. 

“Finding those like-minded individuals is a real challenge. I don’t think it was until high school that it was even possible to find those people,” said Murphy. “I was unable to get myself in those situations and KAR helped me a lot with that.” 

Individual challenges vary from person to person. Throughout the years that Murphy has been musically involved he has used challenges to make himself into a better musician. 

Murphy explained that he will use the skills he’s gained in Kalamazoo to give him a headstart in college and his career.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Mallory Loken
Mallory Loken, Staff Writer
Hi! I am a Staff Writer for Knight life. This year I am a senior and I joined this trimester. I decided to be on the newspaper because I really enjoyed taking Journalism and wanted to get more experience in a newspaper. In my free time I enjoy playing music and spending time with my friends and pets and enjoying nature.
Donate to Knight Life
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All Knight Life Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *