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Summer band concert Sunday at The Fat Cat
Among the bands at Sundays concert will be the Ask Me Not band. Members are, from left, Chege Whidby, Mariah Borelis, Alex Sakata, Andrea Martinez, Aaron Buchanan, John Ott, and Rafael Gonzalez. - photo by Photo Contributed


• WHAT: GK Music’s Summer Band Concert
• WHERE: Fat Cat, 930 11th St, Modesto
• WHEN: Sunday, Aug, 28, two shows, 10 a.m. & 3 p.m.
• TICKETS: $15
• MORE INFO: Call GK Music at 923-4121

GK Music is conducting its annual Summer Band Concert this Sunday, Aug. 28, in Modesto at The Fat Cat Music House.

Gordon Kennedy started his summer band program over 16 years ago with only five bands that performed on a truck bed in a small parking lot. He never dreamed he would one day own his own business and that his idea to keep his students busy over the summer would turn into a two-show event, with 21 bands, being held at one of the area’s most popular music houses.

The Fat Cat, located at 930 11th Street, is a 1930s-era show house featuring some of the country’s best live entertainment. The dozens of musicians who comprise the 21 bands are excited to be sharing the stage that has been graced by famous musicians from Coolio to Bad Company.

The band students, ranging in ages from 7 to 20, have been rehearsing since the beginning of June in an hour and a half session each week. Their mentors, all teachers from GK Music, have taught them everything from playing their songs in time with one another to stage presence. It is very common to see students’ skills on their instrument improve tremendously over the 12-week program. Not only are they rehearsing for an hour and a half each week, but they are excited to learn their parts and don’t want to let their band mates down, both huge incentives to practice during the week. Kennedy places them in bands according to age and skill level, a process that has taken him years to perfect a talent for. By the time the students hit the stage on the big day, they are close friends with their band mates and have the time of their lives, coming off the stage with huge smiles, high fiving their friends and hugging parents who often have tears in their eyes.

The popularity of the summer band program led Gordon to develop a winter band program three years ago. Sign-ups for Winter Band 2011 begin in September. If you would like to come out and see this year’s summer concert, tickets for each show can be purchased for $12 at GK Music or for $15 at the door. The first show is at 10 a.m. and the second at 3 p.m. The music being performed will please all concert goers, covering everything from oldies to contemporary rock.  Call GK Music at (209) 923-4121 for tickets or more information.