Zoe Gosselin: The Future Artist waiting to Rock the Stage


Aretha Prabawa

Zoe Gosselin, Windsor High School Senior

As the venue lights dim, Zoe Gosselin is ready to go onto the stage. She’s nervous, but once she goes on stage and plays, she feels at home.

Gosselin is a senior at Windsor High School who has a passion for music. She has spent years developing her talents and is trying to make it onto the stage professionally.

Gosselin’s journey started with her parents. She says her parents had always loved music. She says, “My mom was a big music lover, so we always had music on.” She also recalls 

Gosselin while tuning a guitar

her childhood, when she says she was always singing. “So when I was little, I used to do a lot with singing,” she says. “I didn’t take lessons or anything, but I was always singing.”

Her parent’s love of music led them to tell her to play an instrument in the fourth grade. “Fast forward to fourth grade, when you can join [the] band, and my parents were like ‘You have to play an instrument. You’re playing an instrument for at least 3 months. There’s no way around it,’” she says. She says she thought about playing the saxophone at first, but her parents wouldn’t let her. “I’ll probably just do saxophone or something, but then they said, ‘No reed instruments,’” she says. “I picked drumming because it looked easy and fun.” She learned that drumming “was not easy, but very fun.”

As her talents grew, she began to learn different styles of drumming. She says she started playing set in sixth grade. Currently, she plays three different styles of drumming: concert percussion, pep band percussion, and set drumming. She thoroughly explained each style of drumming. She says, “I have my concert percussion, which is basically what you hear every time you play classical concert music…And I do pep band music, which is very structural…and then set, which is everything else.” Gosselin says that concert percussion is her least favorite style to play, while set percussion is her favorite because it allows her to have some freedom when playing, unlike the other types. “My favorite is set because it’s so freeing,” she says.

She is also currently teaching herself to play other instruments.  She says that she plays two to four instruments currently. She says, “Well there’s drumming, and then I play [the] ukulele, and I’m learning slowly guitar and piano.” She explains that taking music theory has helped her with learning piano. She says, “Music theory helps a lot with the piano side of that, and I’m getting a lot better. I could play a few songs on there, and I could read a few notes if you gave them to me.”

She is involved with many different activities that allow her to play and make music, as well as perform. On top of being in the concert band, she is also in the marching band and has been taking drum lessons since she was young. “I take drum lessons for my set because we don’t have a teacher for that [at school].” She also says she makes music of her own and is trying to get a program that will help her with that at home.

Gosselin loves playing music for many different reasons. “I love that you can find [music] anywhere.” She takes a quote from Dead Poets Society, a movie about a high school English teacher who inspires his students to be passionate poetry. Specifically, she references a quote from the movie, where John Keating, the high school English teacher played by Robin Williams, says, “Medicine, law, business, engineering, these are noble pursuits and necessary to sustain life. But poetry, beauty, romance, love, these are what we stay alive for.” Gosselin takes the meaning and transfers it to her own experience with music saying, “The arts are what we live for. Music, especially for me, adds this beauty in this world. Music is like magic.”

Gosselin still faces struggles as a musician. One of them is being too judgemental on herself. “I feel like a lot of musicians go through this thing, where they judge their own abilities, and I do that way too much,” she says. She also states that being a female drummer has some setbacks, too. “I also there’s a big thing about being a female drummer, where I just don’t feel like I can’t compete, and I used to feel like I should just quit, and that I shouldn’t do this anymore.” She says that she is still learning to cope with these struggles, but still enjoys what she does nonetheless.

Her path to her dream is different from some. She wants to go to college for music management to learn how the industry works so that she can be smart if she ever enters it. “I’m looking at going to school for music industry. That’s the production and management and advertisement aspects of it.” Gosselin says that she’s doing this because there is a problem with exploitation in the music industry, and she wants to be smart when she enters the industry. She states that she’s doing this because her passion is performing, and that is what she wants to do when she’s older. She says, “I really want to go into performing, and not just concert music.”

She has some advice for those who are older and want to get into drumming or music in general. Gosselin says, “It’s not too late to do something you want to. Don’t feel like you can’t get into music just because you didn’t start when you were five, and you didn’t become a prodigy.” She says that there are many avenues to help those who are older and want to get into music, and it is important to not compare themselves to anyone else.

Gosselin is excited for the future when she can make music of her own and perform it in front of an audience. The stage is waiting for her, and she’s ready to feel at home on it.