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Academic Achiever of the Week: Evan Cunningham

Published: Mar. 30, 2021 at 11:49 PM EDT
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Our Academic Achiever of the Week has quite the resume. He’s an honors student taking college credit classes, was nominated for a DAR Good Citizen Award, signed onto Marietta College’s golf team, and is certified in CPR.

Evan may do a lot but he found his calling in music. His first experience with a guitar sounds a lot like fate.

Evan remembered, “My grandma actually bought it at a yard sale, I think 10 years ago, and it was for all of her grand kids and I was the one who picked up on it and I kind of took it from the rest of them”

Evan’s been playing ever since but there’s one performance that really changed his outlook on guitar.

“We did Folsom Prison Blues, a Johnny Cash song, and I got to do the lead on it for the first time and just hearing the people cheer afterwards, it was just crazy and I was like well that was pretty cool...,”

Evan’s already a dedicated musician but quarantine made him step up his game.

He said, “I’ve been writing a lot because I haven’t been able to do a whole lot of anything else.”

Quarantine also made Evan reflect on his relationship with music.

He said, “..., and I’ve been really thinking like how people can help people in many different ways like between the words, the beats, and the fact that music brings people a lot of joy and that’s really been my big thing.”

It’s what made him decide to pursue music therapy as a career.

Evan’s experienced first-hand how much playing music can impact other people.

He remembered, “I played at a Paden City Labor Day celebration in 2019, when of course you could still do stuff, and I closed my set with country roads and a guy that was a Vietnam War vet came up to me afterwards and said that the first time he heard that song he was actually in Vietnam and he burst into tears.”

Quarantine has forced many of us to take a pause but Evan’s filling that quiet space with music.

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