If there’s music being made on campus, chances are Jake Deal is there. The environmental studies major and Student Events Board president plays percussion in two College ensembles—the Jazz Combo and the big Jazz Band—and is a member of The Took, a local alternative rock band that is developing a strong fan base throughout Maryland and Delaware.
As soon as he graduates, Jake expects The Took will take off: bandmates Ian Trusheim, Trevor Williams and Brooks Long are all Washington College graduates. The foursome, which has amassed a repertoire of 40 or 50 original songs, released a CD in January 2009. The Took Makes an EP is available on iTunes and through online music distribution channels. Until Jake finishes his senior thesis in renewable energy, the band will stay close to Chestertown.
“I’ve always been involved in music,” Jake says. “My high school band played in small clubs in DC, and I wanted to carry over that experience in college. I got involved with the Student Events Board (SEB) at the beginning of my sophomore year so we could throw some concerts with local bands.”
Jake helped write the constitution for a student-driven Events Board that puts together programming in arts & entertainment and handles campus-wide party planning, as well as a host of other types of programs. With the opening of the new student center, Hodson Hall Commons, students have another venue for Open Showcases and Open Mike Nights, which are hugely popular.
“There are a lot of student musicians on campus,” Jake notes. “It’s unfortunate that some of them don’t have time to join ensembles or don’t read music, which deters them from joining a group.”
For Jake, the newly opened Gibson Center for the Arts presents a huge opportunity to grow as an artist. He has spent a lot of one-on-one time learning from percussionist Ken Schweitzer. As a student in Schweitzer’s Music Technology class, Jake is experimenting with digital music production and editing. The class offers instruction in Ableton Live, along with Finale music notation software and Garageband.
Under Jake’s direction, the Student Events Board organized a variety show for the opening of the Gibson Center for the Arts in October. Musician Chad Stokes headlined an evening of entertainment that also featured Comedy Central’s Kyle Cease, illusionist Mike Super, and spoken word performer Gabriela Garcia Medina.
Q & A
Hometown? Clarksville, Maryland
Hobbies? playing music, organizing things, watching X-Files, watching horror movies, playing with The Took (CDs available on iTunes)
Favorite Quotation? “The truth is out there.” “Kenny Powers has a sneaking suspicion that no matter what comes his way, he will always be great.”
Favorite SEB Event/Moment? Foam Dance Party/Selling out Nick Swardson
The SEB in One Word: Incendiary
- Major: Environmental Studies
- President: Student Events Board
- Interfraternal Council
- Greek Life: Kappa Sigma; Founding Father, April 14, 2007
- Omicron Delta Kappa
- Order of Omega
- Jazz Combo
- Jazz Ensemble
- Drummer for the Took