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Music Makes Me the Best Version of Me

February 23, 2020

– Without band, it would feel like half of me was missing. My name is Jamsel Rodriguez, and music makes me the best version of me that I could be. Since I was very young,
I moved houses a lot. I think I had six elementary schools before I actually got to the fifth grade. It was just kinda overwhelming, just having to go through the
same process over and over, of having to find new friends and, not being able to connect with anyone. Once I got to middle school, and I kinda got introduced to music, it was like, oh these are music people, these are people that I
relate to in some kind of way. It was nice to finally feel welcomed to a bigger kind of family. The first two years of actually learning how to play
anything, it was tough. I felt like, uh, this kinda isn’t for me. But then, that third year,
my eighth grade year, it all clicked together. Out of nowhere, I went
from being last chair, to being first chair in the
varsity band in middle school, and making the honor band in the district. I was like, wow, I’m actually pretty good if I have confidence in myself. I play tuba in the band, and I
also play guitar in mariachi. The genre that I play
when I play mariachi music is the genre that connects
more to my family. And there’s this connection
that I have with myself, through other music. I just think it’s challenging,
and I love the challenging. I definitely thought I wanted to be a football player—right? Everybody thinks they wanna be an athlete, everybody thinks they wanna be a rockstar. When it really came down to it, I thought—band director. I get to teach people
things that I love to do. And to have somebody else
that really likes to do music, and open their eyes every single day to something new about music? It just seemed beautiful to me.

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