Jake Lovelace-Smith, AKA "Mudd Puddle," The Harmonica, Age 10
"So I was 3 and we were in the Fairview Inn in Talkeetna watching my dad play the harp with his band. The power went out in the whole town, so it was kind of dark in there. A small generator kept the show going though. I asked my mama if I could go on stage too to play the harmonica and she says, 'If you get on stage, you really got to blow, it's not goofing around.' When my dad finished his song, I came up, took his harp and played. The guitar player on stage didn't see us switch places. I had the right harmonica and the right key and just went with it.
Nobody knew for maybe about 30 seconds to a minute that it was actually me playing until someone goes, 'Hey! There's a little kid on stage!' There was about 200 people packed in that tiny bar."
I love Muddy Waters so that's how I got my stage name, 'Mudd Puddle.'
Penny Layne, The Violin, Age 9
"If I could play in front of any celebrity it would be my stuffed animals! Douglas and Barry are celebrities. They'd get VIP. If some of them can't attend that's fine with me. But most of them will come."
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This article was originally published in The Youth Issue of 61°North Magazine. Contact the editor, Jamie Gonzales, at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or comments.