‘Working together to make awesome music is an amazing feeling’

Warwick. Joey Rodrigues is the WVSD Superintendent’s Artist of the Week.

| 13 Jan 2023 | 02:51

You might have seen Warwick Valley High School senior Joey Rodrigues performing on stage with the Wind Ensemble or rowing on Greenwood Lake with the WVHS crew team.

But Joey has also been busy with other projects.

Some of the historical markers in Warwick have recently been refurbished and repainted. That was Joey’s work, too. He repaired the markers for his Eagle Scout project, and a few weeks ago he officially earned his Eagle Scout award from the Boy Scouts of America.

The Eagle Scout project took months and involved planning, paperwork and meetings with the Warwick Historical Society. Joey surveyed all 24 markers around Warwick and picked the ones most in need of restoration.

“I didn’t know about most of them, and it was very interesting to learn about the history of my town,” Joey said. “Some were more damaged than others and took longer and were a lot more work. The historical society asked me to do around six but I decided to go and do 12.”

Joey, a talented musician, is currently preparing to perform on percussion at the Orange County Music Educators All-County Festival on Jan. 21-22. He also volunteers his time and talent to the concert band, symphonic and chamber orchestra ensembles.

“Joey is a great percussion section leader in the wind ensemble and is always willing to help out with any task,” WVHS band director Megan Shafer said. “He is able to demonstrate rhythmic and dynamic concepts to the group. And while helping his peers, he keeps a positive and encouraging attitude.”

Joey started playing percussion instruments in the fourth grade with the xylophone and then moved onto the snare drum and learned drumming techniques.

“It was difficult at the start,” Joey said. “I had a lot to learn. The hardest part was the multi-tasking with your feet and your hands.”

In addition to performing with the wind ensemble, Joey is one of the leaders of the WVHS marching band. He also enjoys playing with the rock band Huge Cowbell.

“Band has always been fun for me,” Joey said. “All of my teachers have been amazing, and it’s given me great experiences and made me a better musician and a better person. With music, I just love playing with my friends. Working together to make awesome music is an amazing feeling.”

Huge Cowbell is based at the Rock Underground in Pine Island. The group, which practices once a week, has played at events such as the Greenwood Lake Street Fair and the Greenwood Lake Winter Carnival.

Joey has been a member of the WVHS crew team for the past two years. He likes being out on the water and working with his friends on a team sport.

Joey also excels as a student. He is a National Honor Society member and was named to the Cum Laude Honor Roll for the first marking period. He plans to study finance or actuary science in college and is currently taking SUNY Orange Calculus 1.

“Music is definitely something I want to continue in,” Joey said. “I don’t plan to major in music in college, but I am going to continue playing.”