ROCKchester festival preview: Interview with Isaac Jahns of Younge Park
ROCKchester is a local music and arts festival showcasing the growing youth music and art scene in Rochester. Curated by teenagers, the event focuses on the participation of young creators, musicians, and artists.
In the lead up to the event, the Med City Beat will publish interviews with some of the featured artists. Our first installment is with Isaac Jahns of Younge Park. The interview was conducted by ROCKchester consultant Terri Allred.
What is the name of your band?
Where did you get that name?
Younge Park is the name of a park in Rochester that we all would hang out at in past summers. We built and maintained a bike trail through the woods behind the park until houses were built in its place. The name is a salute to where we spent most of our free time in high school.
Who are your band members?
Isaac Jahns - 19 - University of Missouri
Troy Green - 19 - RCTC
Elliott Newman - 19 - Drake University
Sam Schutz - 18 - Winona State University
Gavin Sparks - 18 - UW-Green Bay
Ryan Christopherson - 18 – RCTC
What kind of music do you play?
Do you write your own music or play covers?
We're in the process of moving from performing all covers to all originals. In a few months we'll play mostly originals, but for Rockchester we'll play mostly covers.
How did you come to play together?
We were all seniors at Mayo High School last year and decided to play at the talent show (NEWMAN'S OWN - NEVER FORGET). After the show, we decided we liked playing music together, so we just kept practicing.
Who are your musical inspirations?
Muse, Walk the Moon, Young the Giant, The Strokes, Queen, Hippo Campus
Where can people find you?
We're on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Soundcloud, Bandcamp, ReverbNation, and pretty much every other social network ever created. To find us, use this: ______________.com/youngeparkband. It works for every site.
Who is the least organized in your group?
We're all pretty disorganized in our own way, but the least organized would probably go to Elliott. He's got hundreds of sounds to choose from on his keyboard, and the selection process usually takes place... live at the show.
Tell us an inside joke.
"Call me what you want but you can't call me broke... MONEY!"
OK, what does that mean?
It’s a lyric from the song "Antidote" by Migos. One person says the line, and anyone within earshot has to yell MONEY just like the song. When we all heard the song for the first time, we all started laughing hysterically. It was one of the first moments that we had as a full group, and we thought it was so funny that we just kept it going.
What is the funniest, weirdest thing that has ever happened at a gig?
At our talent show gig, our finale song was Uptown Funk. Troy went to sing it - but his microphone didn't work. He hit the line, but the whole school had no idea because no one could hear him.
Why are you excited to play at ROCKchester?
It's going to be a great start to our summer. Half the band (Isaac, Gavin, Elliott) comes back to Rochester for the summer in the last few days prior, so we're going from 0 to 100 real quick. It's the largest venue we've played and our first performance as Younge Park. We can't wait.
What do you want people to know about you and the teen art scene in Rochester?
Rochester has so many talented people, but we as a whole community have yet to figure that out because we stick to our own circles. Rochester functions like three small towns in one, based around the high schools. It's not just a student problem, either. It starts with our parents and the people who run Rochester. This festival could be the beginning of breaking the norm. For most of the performers (including us), it's one of the first times we've performed outside of Steam and the local coffee shops.
We want to take the opportunity we've been given and make as many connections as possible. While we're still a teen band, we're not shooting to be just a good teen band. We want to be recognized as a good band, regardless of how old we are. Everyone performing at Rockchester has the potential to make that leap, and we want to be one of those groups to take it.
ROCKchester Music and Arts Festival is scheduled for May 15 at Wicked Moose Bar and Grill in Rochester. For more information about or to purchase tickets, visit rockchesterfestival.com.
The Med City Beat is a proud sponsor of ROCKchester.
(Cover graphic: Rockchester Festival)