By Tracy Wayne

Tim Miller assists Anthony Mckitrick on the electric bass.

On most Monday evenings, you can follow your ears down to the basement of Clay Middle School. Tucked away in a corner room, is a very, special, type of band, the After-School Band.

Students come together with community members who love sharing music. These are volunteer musicians of all types, from rock and roll to old time bluegrass music. They join in with the After-School Band. It’s an amazing intergenerational, sharing of music. Everybody has a good time and the students just soak up the knowledge and improve their music skills.

Jim and Jeannie Perdue have been helping out with the kids for over six years. This year Tim Miller has stepped up to the plate to work with our bass players. Tim and Jim both frequently bring their friends in to play with the kids. We are so lucky to have great community involvement with school music. The After-School Band also gives students a chance to try new things. They might try their hand at improvising a solo, learning a new instrument or singing.

This month the After-School Band played for the board of education and local School Improvement Council meeting on March 26, and at the Big Otter Community Center on Friday March 30. Tracy Wayne, the director of the After-School Band, is looking forward to continuing working with these great kids and performing at the Vandalia Festival in Charleston, WV.