Regardless of where you are in the world, growing up poses its fair share of challenges. Every day is full of surprises, good or bad, and this is especially true during one’s teenage years. During that time, people often focus on finding themselves while also finding their niche and cultivating their passions through school, hobbies, or extracurricular activities. Through life’s toughest moments, these are the outlets people turn to—whether they are friends, family, art, or sports. Whatever the outlet of choice is, it can be life-changing.
For three of many students attending Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts, music was their solace. Eventually, Raphael Buyo decided to develop his passion for music, which he hoped to someday take public. At the time, he was playing in the high school jazz band when he met Josh Holcomb and Daro Behroozi. Every day after school, Daro, Josh, and Raphael gathered anywhere from four to ten people and played music in Central Park. This was the beginning of Lucky Chops.
For Lucky Chops, LaGuardia High School and the teachers they came across motivated them to pursue their musical passions and change their lives. “We all play instruments because we had some teacher who was patient enough to deal with us while we were starting out and still sounded really bad. We had teachers that stuck with us, who gave us the courage and confidence to keep going and to get better,” Josh reminisces.
“We want to inspire people all over the world to practice and get into playing music because if we didn’t have music… Lots of us grew up in inner city New York City, and we could’ve ended up in not so great positions doing very bad things right now. We really look at music like this: music saved us and gave us this life,” he admits.
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PHOTOS: LORI GUTMAN // @lorigutmanphotos
WORDS: MICHELLE BALZER