By Cassidy Pate, Correspondent
Killeen’s Jarin Cole, known on stage as “JC Stringz,” offered live music to a crowd of about thirty locals at Blends Wine Bar on Tuesday, July 17.
It was a night of blues, smooth jazz and sipping, as the 17-year-old Harker Heights High School senior showcased his violin, electric and jazz guitar skills.
Cole introduced himself with a few effective words.
“Good evening everyone…I’m JC Stringz, I am seventeen years old and I hope y’all enjoy my music tonight,” Cole said.
It took one song for Cole to receive positive acknowledgement from the crowd, as casual head bobs and applause at the conclusion of each song became the norm.
Because he promoted this particular concert with Drake’s, notable rapper, singer and songwriter’s, single “In My Feelings” in mind, Cole began his set with his electric guitar and audio music accompaniment, and left crowd in their feelings for the remainder of the night.
In conjunction, towards the middle of his set Cole played “In My Feelings” on violin and invited those in attendance to perform the “In My Feelings” dance alongside him. Two women jumped at the opportunity as Cole walked around the room, which had the audience at the edge of their seats with camera phones in hand.
It was Cole’s diversity in both instruments and song selection that kept the crowd interested. One moment he would be walking around the room, plucking on his violin and the next he would be sitting with his eyes closed, jazz guitar in hand, playing a ballad.
In order to pay tribute to the history of blues and connect to its modern counterpart, Cole continued to play classics, such as selections from B.B. King, also known as the “King of Blues,” as well as more recent songs, such as Sam Smith’s “Stay With Me,” Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” and John Legend’s “All of Me.” Cole’s music has become a family business of sorts, as his mother and father, Tina and Darron Cole, serve as his managers.
Before the concert, Mr. Cole was seen setting up Cole’s equipment while Mrs. Cole arrived with Cole sporting her “JC Stringz” t-shirt. The passion Cole has for his music is obvious, so it was understandable when Mrs. Cole said Cole was a miracle baby, which is her reasoning behind his musical gift.
“That’s why he has this gift,” Mrs. Cole said.
Cole began his music career at the age of eight with the acoustic guitar; electric guitar and violin at 10 and most recently introduced the keyboard into his expertise at 12.
Cole said his next step is to achieve his dream of attending the University of North Texas (UNT) to pursue Jazz Performance. Before then, however, Cole is set to take the stage on August 24 at Blends Wine Bar among numerous other appearances in order to raise money for his future education, band camps and musical career.