The Two-Boy Band

Marching Band, Old San Juan, Puerto Rico ©Ronald C. Flores-Gunkle

By Ronald C. Flores-Gunkle

“I get to choose,” Bernie said. His tone allowed for no argument.

“But it’s my garage,” Jake said.

“Yeah, but it’s my GarageBand. On my laptop.” His eleven-year-old face looked at least a decade older. He was adamant.

“But it was my idea,” Jake said, just a bit of a whine in his voice.

“You get the guitar and the drums. I get the piano and the vocals. It’s settled.”

Jake thought for a moment, then tried a new tactic. “But we need someone else. You can’t have a band with just two people. He can get the drums and I can be a singer.”

Bernie looked at his best friend as if he were an idiot. “There are lots of bands with two people. What about Simon and Garfunkle? What about Sonny & Cher? What about the Everly Brothers, huh?”

“They weren’t bands, they were a duets.” Jake’s whine got stronger.

“Were not.” Bernie didn’t sound too sure.

“Ask your dad. He’ll know,” Jake said.

“He won’t remember,” Bernie said.

“He’s got their albums. He’ll know.”

“Naa. Those are my grandpop’s albums.” Bernie wanted the matter closed.

“Whatever. We’ll be special, a two-boy band. I want to a singer. I want to be the singer.” Jake popped the lid of the laptop closed for emphasis.

“Jake you can’t be the singer. You sing like a cat.” Bernie grabbed the cumputer and hugged it to his chest.

Jake grabbed it back. “And you howl like a dog. Maybe we should call our band, ‘The Animals.’”

Bernie scrunched up his face, deep in thought. “Not bad,” he said.

“Moron. The Animals were very, very famous,” Jake said.

“Never heard of them.”

“Ask your father. Ask his father,’ Jake said with a smirk.

Bernie did the scrunched face thing again, then said, “How about ‘Band Aid’? I bet nobody ever thought of that.”

“Lame. Sounds like a benefit concert for Johnson & Johnson.”

“Is that another old duet?” Bernie asked. He stuck out his tongue and, in a tone that was meant to settle the matter, said: “We’re calling the band ‘The Chinchilla Hose Company.’”

“That’s crazy. That’s the name of the firehouse.”

“And I’ll be ‘911,’ the singer formerly known as Bernie.”

The two boys laughed hysterically.

“I got it! I got the perfect name!” Bernie almost shouted. “Rubber Band. We’ll be ‘The Rubber Band.’”

“ We’ll toss rubbers to the fans!” Jake said, then giggled. “So they’ll remember our name. We’ll be famous!”

They laughed hysterically again.

“Great. Now that we got that settled, let’s figure out how this GarageBand program works.”

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