“No matter what I’m doing, music is involved somehow,” senior Jaedan Curcio shared. Jaedan, who has been playing saxophone since fourth grade, first discovered a true love of music during his freshman year at KO. “I started listening to jazz then,” he said. “Some of the upperclassmen really got me into it and I started practicing. I would practice in my basement every night until 10:00 at night, and I just really got into it.” Although he hadn’t taken it seriously prior to ninth grade, music has since become an essential part of Jaedan’s life.
Last summer, after being awarded the Joseph Spinella Scholarship, Jaedan spent two weeks at the Litchfield Jazz Camp. “I met a lot of people there I would jam with, and afterwards I got in touch with a few of them, and we all just decided collectively that we wanted to start a band,” he reflected. “We started a band called Business Goose, and got together about a month later to record an EP. Around January of this year, we all got together one more time and recorded our new album, ‘Bongos with Issues,’ which just released about a month ago.”
At KO, Jaedan is currently taking AP Music Theory and is a member of Jazz Combo. “KO has given me a lot of opportunities to expand my horizons with music,” he said. “[Creative Arts Chair] Mr. Millen has been a huge influence, giving me practice resources and the ability to teach myself. The school has given me a lot of opportunities to not only learn more about music itself, but also get better at playing and learning new things.”
When he’s not playing saxophone, Jaeden can be found leading the KO Music Appreciation Club. “We get together and just put a playlist on, listen to music, and play some cards,” he remarked. “It’s a lot of fun. I’ve made a lot of new friends through it and I’m hoping that it will continue long after I’m gone from KO.” He is also a tri-sport athlete, participating in football, swimming, and baseball throughout the year.
In his everyday life, it’s fair to say that music is always involved, whether intentionally or not. “If I’m watching a movie, I’m thinking about the score,” Jaedan said. “I can’t even listen to the radio anymore because I’m thinking in my head, ‘Oh, that was a major seventh chord.’ I don’t want to be thinking about the intricacies of chord progressions when I’m trying to just listen to pop songs on the radio, but music has kind of enveloped my life.”
Jaeden will attend Tulane University, where he will double-major in chemistry and jazz studies. “I keep my saxophone on a stand right next to my chair, so if I get bored doing homework, I’ll just reach over and play saxophone for five minutes,” he said. “I just can’t get enough of it. If it ends up being a profession, that would be great, but regardless of if I’m actually making money off of it or not, I’m always gonna be doing music. It’s nice just knowing that no matter where I go, I’ll always have music to ground me.”
Jaedan had a few parting words. “For everyone reading this, go check out our new album, ‘Bongos with Issues,’” he said. “It’s on Apple Music, Spotify, and YouTube. I’m very proud of how it ended up and I hope that it kicks off because it’s very good in my opinion.” We wish Jaedan the best of luck in all of his future musical endeavors!