Having a house full of musical instruments certainly helped make it happen, but it was being in lockdown that got the Low family band humming.

Musicians INP
The Low family band. Photo by Jessie Casson

Fifteen year-old Maddy was confined to her Mt Albert, Auckland home with parents Richard and Sonja and her 12 year-old brother Jacob, happy enough doing online schooling, but itching to progress her music.

Maddy, who has been playing guitar on and off since she was seven, had discovered the joy of writing her own songs during the 2020 lockdown, playing with a friend over FaceTime. Between then and last year’s Auckland lockdown, she and friends established a band, called Innovation, with Maddy on lead guitar and lead vocals. That had to go on hold for Auckland’s 15-week lockdown because they couldn’t find a workable online platform; any they tried featured frustrating time delays.

So Maddy persevered on her own. “With all the extra time on my hands I started working things out and really got into it. That was the positive; there was nothing else I had to do, so I got invested in my music.

“My dad is into music, too. He’d be upstairs on his electric guitar learning a new song and I’d be writing stuff and then we would just grab a couple of guitars and have a jam together.” It soon evolved into a family affair. 

“We made things up and sometimes we learned songs; we spent quite a while on Rock’n Me by the Steve Miller Band... Dad was on guitar, Mum (she took up bass a couple of years ago) would pick that up and my brother would grab the keyboard or drums. “My brother didn’t always want to do it but when he did, he had fun.” Encouraged by the experience, Maddy plans to stick with creating music and is confident the family will keep playing together, too.

Reported by Kathryn Webster for our Autumn 2022 issue

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