Hidden Gem: Mr. Mathews

Mr.+Mathews+plays+music+in+his+recording+studio+with+friends.+
Mr. Mathews plays music in his recording studio with friends.

Mr. Mathews plays music in his recording studio with friends.

Mr. Mathews plays music in his recording studio with friends.

Fiona O., Staff Writer

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Middlebrook’s “Hidden Gems” is a special opportunity for those with talents to shine. Every Friday morning in the lobby, one student or staff member makes their debut in front of the students coming from buses. This new Middlebrook tradition was created and now organized by Team Change.

 

An interview with Mr. Mathews, 6-Green social studies teacher:

When did you first start playing electric guitar?

I was 15 years old when I got my first guitar.

 

Who convinced you to do it?

Nobody. I just decided I wanted to start playing guitar.

 

Where did you get the idea from?

I grew up listening to music and rock music and punk rock music and I wanted to learn how to play.

 

Was there a school band you could play in?

Well, I didn’t play guitar in school, but I played french horn for six years.

 

Did you ever stop playing at one point?

No, I’ve always continued to play music.

 

Are there any particular people you tend to play with often?

I’m in a band right now with two guys that I went to high school with and I have friends who come to visit me. They spend the weekend at my house and we play music in my recording studio.

 

What equipment do you need for a recording studio?

These days it’s easier than it used to be because of programs like GarageBand and other recording programs that you can get for free. If you’ve got the right computer for it and a microphone, it’s pretty easy to get started with recording, whereas, when I was in high school, it was not as easy to record your own music.

 

Where did you get the equipment from?

The guitar was given to me that I play and the amplifier is owned by one of the people I play music with.

 

Does your band compose songs?

Yes, we play original songs.

 

What do you do with the songs you compose?

Sometimes I record them, but I just play them to have fun playing.

 

Are you the one who composes the songs or do other band members do it?

We all contribute to the songs.

 

What inspires you to write songs?

Sometimes what happens here in my classroom, sometimes what happens with my friends and family, or what’s going on out there in the world. Inspiration really comes from everywhere.

 

Does your band have a name?

We don’t really have an official name, but the guy who plays guitar in my band calls our band “Product of Boredom.”

 

Does your band ever play gigs?

We haven’t in a long time, but we used to play often.

 

What convinced you to do the Hidden Gems program? Did someone convince you or did you just decide to do it?

I saw the first one, [Neel] the boy who played piano, and I think it’s a really great idea to showcase the talents that we all have. So, I saw the opportunity to keep the ball rolling and hopefully, I was able to inspire other people to step up and demonstrate their own hidden talents.

 

Do you have any advice for young musicians?

Get out there and just do it. You don’t have to be an amazing musician to get out there and have fun and just make some noise.

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