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Published August 3rd, 2011
Lamorinda's Youth Bands Play On
By Amy Holm
John Haag on drums Photos provided

Throughout Lamorinda, young musicians practice their beat with the goal of MTV stardom. Although complaints from neighbors occur and each town enforces noise ordinance regulations, these young garage bands believe in nurturing mutual respect.
Wesley Guergah, a 19 year-old bass player from The Soulful Curls, said, "With the exception of one neighbor, everyone else seems to really enjoy our music."
"We did have a man march into the shack in our backyard where we were practicing and yell at us. We asked if he'd prefer us to play on other days or times, as we want to be neighborly."
The Soulful Curls, so named for the three members' curly hair, was started less than a year ago and has performed in small cafes around Lamorinda. The band members each play multiple instruments, but Guergah felt they make their best music when he plays bass, Michael Lucacher plays drums, and Zach McFadden plays guitar.
"My favorite part is being able to make music that's our own with other people and being able to express ourselves," McFadden said.
The Soulful Curls have their own Facebook and Myspace pages where they update songs and release performance dates and locations.
John Haag, a 20-year-old Moraga resident, has had several opportunities to get out of his garage and play music with more established groups.
His high school band, Invection, played metal music out of his friend's garage, but ended up moving to Soundwave Studios in Oakland because of noise complaints.
"To maintain neighbor relations, we decided we couldn't practice in our garage anymore," Haag said. During rehearsals, he networked with other musicians and met drummers who played for popular Bay Area metal bands such as Faith No More and Machine Head.
Haag is currently the assistant editor for a metal magazine based in Martinez, Calif. called Hails and Horns.
It's not just rock bands that are gathering in garages and looking to step onto the stage. Daniel Kriozere, a senior at Miramonte High School, plays trumpet in the Altarinda Jazz Combo, a group of six students who are also in the jazz ensemble at school.
He said that he was encouraged to start a band last summer at a jazz camp in Lafayette which he attended with five friends. They have since performed at the Lafayette Art Gallery as well as for community service projects, parties, and international nights at school.
"I have fun playing music with my friends," Kriozere said. "Being part of a band is a great extracurricular activity."

Amy Holm grew up in Moraga and currently is a junior at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington majoring in Journalism and Public Relations. She is home in Lamorinda for the summer.

Zach McFadden on bass guitar

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