Musicians light up lunch


Abby Johnson

Junior Claire Hartung watches junior Patrick Reilly play a guitar riff during Electric Lunch’s performance.

Mia Price and Abby Johnson

The Electric Lunch Band is not the only student band on campus.

Juniors Evelyn Mach, Jack Denechaud and Patrick Reilly and senior Max De la Rosa make up Monkey Mind.

“The name came from posting monkey GIFs in our group chat, and Jack said ‘monkey mind’ randomly, and we thought it was a cool name,” Reilly said.

Mach, Denechaud and Reilly formed the band their freshman year.

“We’d been hanging out a lot on weekends, and we decided it would be fun to make our own band since we all play instruments, and we’re also very passionate about music,” Mach said.

They asked De la Rosa to join this year as their drummer.

“He agreed, which was excellent,” Mach said. “He’s been a great addition to the band.”

While they created the band with the intention of just jamming out for fun, they asked if they could play at an Electric Lunch last year and have been performing there since.

“I think Electric Lunch is super cool because it allows people to express themselves and share their talents with the school community,” Mach said. “It brings everyone together to listen to some good music.”

While the Electric Lunch Band and Monkey Mind have similar styles, they bring different elements to Electric Lunches.

“I think Monkey Mind and the Electric Lunch Band are similar in a lot of ways as we play songs in the genre of indie and rock, but I think Monkey Mind has played more classic songs, such as ‘Just Like Heaven or ‘My Best Friend’s Girl,’ ” Reilly said.

Monkey Mind has loved performing together and is excited for the future.

“I just hope we keep playing and having fun together,” Mach said. “In the end, that’s really all that matters to us.”

This fall, five students worked in harmony to bring the Upper School community together.

A Kinkaid tradition since 2019, the Electric Lunch Band performed at least once a semester to give students a midday study break.

“We only had two Electric Lunches last year, and I think we can definitely have at least four this year or more,” said senior Joycie Brass, band leader.

After the majority of the original band graduated in spring 2022, seniors Joycie Brass and Alex Jinnette refused to let the band dissolve during their last year of high school.

Before the school year started, the two selected senior Sam Dillon and juniors Claire Hartung and Patrick Reilly to keep the band up and running.

Though some band members are newer and younger than others, Jinnette was quick to note that he, too, is new to music. During the height of the pandemic, Jinnet te purchased a drum set and created an Instagram page to help pass the time.

After school began, he was recruited to join the Electric Lunch Band.

“In the spring of my sophomore year, Carolina Weiland hunted me down in the hallway and asked me if I wanted to join,” Jinnette said. “I had no idea if I wanted to at the time, and I honestly didn’t know who she was, so I kinda just ignored her.”

Weiland, who graduated last spring, was persistent, and she continued to ask Jinnette until he agreed.

“Finally, in the spring of my junior year I was free, so I began preparing with the band in early February,” Jinnette said. “Since then, it’s been awesome.”

Dillon was similarly asked to join the band for her instrumental talent.

“My role as a bass player is to listen to both the guitar and the drums to be the bridge between percussion and harmony,” Dillon said. “It is my job to find how percussively or melodically I need to play to make the band on a whole sound complete.”

Despite having members with a variety of roles, Jinnette explained that there is no superiority within the group.

“I guess I would describe myself as a co-leader,” Jinnette explained. “But I think everyone is, and there isn’t much of a power dynamic in the band. It’s a really relaxed environment.”

Jinnette wasn’t the only one to mention the laid-back atmosphere. Once the group realized their compatibility, they began rehearsing together all the time and would even meet up at each other’s houses.

“We’ll rehearse on the weekends and then get dinner afterwards,” Brass said. “We really just get closer from being in the band together.”

Dillon feels the same.

“Our rehearsals are always really memorable,” Dillon said. “I like rehearsing at Claire’s because her dad has a really cool collection of guitars and a jazz bass that I get to play.”

After perfecting their performances, the band expressed that attending Electric Lunch was important for the student body.

“Electric Lunch is one of the few completely student-led arts events at the school,” Hartung said. “Student-led events like this are a reminder to Kinkaid students that we are capable of producing art outside of a classroom or an adult-led environment.”

Electric Lunches also give students a break from the school day and allow them to relax and have fun together.

“Music can relieve stress from someone’s mind or clear their head from the struggles that can happen at school,” Reilly said.

Lastly, attending Electric Lunches encourages student-artists to continue to explore their talents.

“I think it’s really fun to see your classmates perform,” Brass said. “I think that’s why people love the musical and the play so much is because you get to see your peers doing something that they enjoy. It’s great to support your peers.”