By Anabel Reyes
Eugene Lopez is an ELAC music student, song writer, and winner of the first prize at the Music Association of California Community College competition. This is the second consecutive year that ELAC has won this competition.
Lopez competed along nine other students from different colleges. He tied with another student and they both won first prize.
Lopez said he felt really good and proud about winning. “I kind of didn’t know what to expect when I went there. I was confident in my ability, and my skills, and what I know. When I won I was like, wow it really paid off,” said Lopez.
Lopez was born in Hollywood and lived his entire life in East Los Angeles. He is third generation, since his grand parents immigrated from Mexico. His passion for music developed at a young age. He started playing piano when he was seven. In middle school he played the flute for the band and the orchestra. He started playing guitar when he was 13 years old.
Lopez decided to join the ska band Mente Corrupta (corrupted mind) when he was 17 playing the bass guitar, which became his favorite instrument.
After playing six years with the band he decided to go back to school, finish high school and start a college education. He chose ELAC first because it was in the neighborhood but then he stayed because he liked the wonderful music program that helped put him in a better place.
Lopez’s goal is to become a music teacher. He currently works as a tutor for the music department in different subjects such as piano, voice, music theory and fundamentals. He is focusing in music education because, “I wanna give back to the community where I come from” he said.
Along with other students, Lopez has started a music club called the Muse Club. Their goal is to enrich and elevate the music department as a whole.
He believes the department has a wonderful faculty and program. “It would be great if we could get more students and funding, get more voices out there to be heard and recognized,” said Lopez.
Lopez’s biggest inspiration to keep going in music is “the love of life, loving myself, loving people that I’m surrounded with, and love in general,” he said. He is currently working on a five to six minute composition, taking advantage of all the instruments and tools the college provides. He is planning on working on it for another year and hopes to be able to perform it some day.