LocoMotive makes tracks in the local music scene

August 24, 2014

By Sherry Grindeland

New: August 24, 11:14 a.m.

Like a lot of rock bands, LocoMotive members have a favorite hangout after they’ve performed at Snoqualmie Valley gigs. Even thought they frequently play at a local pub and restaurant, their hangout of choice isn’t a bar. It’s the local frozen yogurt shop.
The five-member band, all middle and elementary school students, range in age from 10 to 14 and include Tom Guilbert-Newell of Sammamish.
In recent months they’ve appeared at the Radio Duvall event, the Tanner Jeans Bike Rodeo and the Finapalooza at Finaghty’s in Snoqualmie and at a fundraiser for the Mount Si High School Jazz Band.
All these appearances – and the countless rehearsals and lessons – have been just plain fun said lead singer, Bella Mariani.
“I do this as a hobby,” said the Snoqualmie 12-year-old. “Singing with the band is one of my favorite things to do, especially in front of an audience. It is fun to sing to them, to be with them, to play to them.”
LocoMotive was formed in 2011 at Big Star Studios in Snoqualmie. The members include Bella, Tom Guilbert-Newell of Sammamish, brothers Ethan and Ryan Horn and Jack Doughtery of Snoqualmie.
Tom plays the drums, Ethan the bass, Ryan and Jack the guitar.
Tom Guilbert-Newell’s mother, Muriel Guilbert, expects there will be crowd for the show.
“They’re getting well known in the local community,” she said. “They are doing it for fun and they are all passionate about the music.”
The music, said Guilbert and Bella, is classic rock. The repertoire ranges from 1960s hits to today’s songs. LocoMotive even has some original pieces.
Bella wrote one called, “Moving On.”
“It’s about something that isn’t working out. Don’t listen to what other people say, do what you want to do,” she said. “I wrote the words and the music and we built it into a band song.”
Bella said because she wrote it – as much for herself as an audience – she relates to the words and sings it with passion.
The band, she said, usually has one session a week at the studio with instructor Dan McInerney, and then practices a couple times a week on its own.
The students get together at the Horn brothers home because their bonus room over the garage was converted into a stage and studio.
Both Bella and Guilbert said the band is a hobby for the five students.
They all have multiple interests. Tom, for instance, takes martial arts classes. Bella plays soccer and sings in the choir at Twin Falls Middle School. Others play baseball.
The hardest part of being in a band, Bella said, is the multi-tasking.
The memorization comes easy but singing to a crowd, working to hit the right notes and hit them in a way that makes them enjoyable to the audience and playing the guitar at the right time takes a lot of practice.
So far LocoMotive performs for free.
“We all just do it for fun,” Bella said. “We’re good friends and enjoy practicing and playing. We’re always surprised when someone asks us what we charge.”
Being the mother of a musician who is too young to drive keeps Guilbert driving a lot.
“It’s worth it,” she said. “It’s fun to watch them and fun to see them do so well. I’m impressed because they’re at the point now where some days they’re learning two new songs.”
Being a band mother doesn’t mean late nights. They’re so young, she said, they’re usually done playing by 8:30 p.m.
Upcoming performances include Open Mic night Aug. 21 at The Black Dog Arts Café in Snoqualmie and at the teen center Ground Zero in Bellevue Sept. 5.
Guilbert advises people to check the group’s Facebook page for updates on appearances. Visit it at www.facebook.com/LocoMotive98065.
To hear the group, go to the Radio Duvall event page at
http://radioduvall.org/radio-duvall-presents-locomotive-youth/

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