Alex Vihtelic is a junior at Ohio University studying finance. After college he plans on becoming a financial analyst. He looks like Matt Damon’s twin but sorry ladies and gentlemen, he’s taken. For now, he spends his days hanging with friends and playing music.
HCOU: When did you first get into music?
I always loved music when I was growing up but I was too shy to join a choir group or formally learn an instrument. On my 10th birthday I got my first guitar and I loved it. That being said I had no idea how to tune or play the instrument so I irritated a lot of people.
HCOU: Did anyone teach you how to play or was it self-taught?
A few months after I got a guitar, I began playing, my dad’s friend began to give me informal lessons, teaching me songs and simple things about the guitar. This lasted a couple of years until he could no longer teach me. After that I taught myself a more in depth understanding of the guitar.
HCOU: What instrument do you play?
Guitar is the instument I play the most but I can do simple things on bass as well as drums.
HCOU: What is your favorite genre?
My favorite genre differs every week. Sometimes I am really into classic rock and other weeks I only listen to alternative music or blues. But generally any genre of rock is what I listen to.
HCOU: What do you like most about playing music?
The satisfaction of working really hard to master a song or part of an instrument was what drove me to continue playing but now I love the satisfaction of entertaining people and putting on a performance that people like.
HCOU: Can you describe the feeling you get while playing?
Playing a guitar feels like nothing. Like absolutely nothing. Any kind of stress or worry no longer exists when I pick up an instrument. It’s my way of escaping the world for a little while.
HCOU: Who is all in your band? What is your band’s name? How long have you guys known one another? How did you all meet?
My band, B and the Mini Muffins, includes Emmett Mascha on bass, John Knavish on guitar, and Brett Korsok on drums.
Brett and I have been best friends since high school and have been playing together since our freshman year of highschool. We never did anything serious just jammed together, until we came to college. I did not meet Emmett and John until a week ago. We met through a mutual friend. Because of our late meet we had a lot to get done before we played Mill fest. Luckily, John and Emmett are great musicians and learned our set quickly
HCOU: What was your favorite moment on Mill Fest?
My favorite part of Mill Fest was when I looked into the audience and saw everyone singing with us. Knowing that so many people were enjoying themselves because of our music really made me happy.
HCOU: Do you have potential gigs in the future?
Yes! A couple people gave their numbers to us and asked us to play house shows. Our neighbor is also in charge of scheduling bands at The Union. He heard us playing and offered us a gig this spring which we still have to book.
HCOU: What do you hope to gain from this experience?
Practicing only makes people better. So just being able to perform and getting more live experience.
HCOU: Any funny stories or memories you would like to share?
After the police shut us down we conversed with an officer who told us he appreciated us playing live music because he was a musician himself. We tried to get him to play a song with us which he thought about for about 15 seconds before saying no because he did not want to get in trouble.
HCOU: What else do you enjoy doing besides playing music?
I like to do hoodrat stuff with my friends.
HCOU: Does anyone inspire you? If so, who?
I am inspired by many musicians. Specifically Jimi Hendrix, The Black Keys, Rolling Stones, and Sublime.
HCOU: Any advice you would like to share to young aspiring artists?
If someone tells you that you cannot get good at an instrument, just ignore them. You don’t need that negativity in your life and It’s also never too late to start.
If you want to stay updated on the latest of B and the Mini Muffins you can follow their social media:
Facebook: Alex Vihtelic, Brett Korsok, Emmett Mascha, and John Knavish
Twitter: @Alex_on_tweeter, @brettfromohio
Link to video:
(video: left - John Knavish, Middle - Alex Vihtelic, Right - Emmett Mascha, back - Brett Korsok)
(photo & video courtesy of Alex Vihtelic’s Facebook)