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Guitar Center Donates $10,000 of Equipment to Johnson City High School

By Faith Jessie.
Johnson City High school students rocked out to the tune of $10,000 worth of brand new equipment Tuesday morning.

"I was like a kid in a candy shop.. it was beautiful, " said Brian Holmes, JCHS Senior.

Many students had similar reactions when the shipment of electronic instruments like guitars, drums, and amplifiers were delivered by the Johnson City Guitar Center, all free of charge the school.

"Guitar Center has a corporate giving program, so I wrote a letter explaining who were were at Johnson City, the history of excellent school music programs and what we wanted to do by offering contemporary ensembles to include more students in our schools," said Matt Clauhs, Johnson City School District Music Coordinator.

That letter resulted in the largest charitable gift the Johnson City Guitar Center has given in it's nearly 10 years of existence.

"A big part of what we say we do at Guitar Center is to help people make music and Johnson City School District has done a great job of doing the same with a lot of their music and art programs. So it just seemed like a great opportunity to kind of combine them and really encourage the kids to learn and enjoy something," said, Gordon Gottlieb, Store Manager, Johnson City Guitar Center.

"I usually get one amp and stick with it for a while, so getting the chance to try new stuff is a privilege," said Holmes.

A privilege that will impact hundreds of music students from Kindergarten to 12th grade. It will also expand the school's music program making a new modern band class possible.

"Taking this modern band class, a lot of people who might be a little interested can come and play. It is a blessing to be able to get all this modern equipment and have so much of it so, so many people can play music now," said Kyle Begley, JCHS Senior.

"In Johnson City, our music students are more likely to attend school, pass their classes, do better on common core exams, so we knew that music students are very dedicated and committed...so what we are trying to do is include more students in the school to be a part of that culture and part of that community," said Clauhs.

"I feel like music programs are extremely important. I feel like they help kids that want to express their talent...they give them a chance to express it," said Holmes.

Expression that these and future students will continue to give for many years to come.