Cook: Teamwork important

Jay Cook, a senior, plays a French horn in the Elizabethton High School band.
  By Greg Miller

  Teamwork is a "very important" aspect of a band's success, according to Jay Cook, an Elizabethton High School senior who plays the French horn.
  "There's no individual section that is more important than another," said Cook, the band's drum major. "And when there is a section that isn't working as hard or is not being as good as leaders in the other sections, the band is not balanced very well. But when the whole band is working as a whole, as a unit, it's pretty amazing to see what we can accomplish and what we can do."
  Cook saw a French horn and thought it was a very interesting looking instrument and decided that maybe he would like to try to play it.
  He has been playing the French horn since the sixth grade. "I have two older brothers that were in the band whenever they were younger, and my mom kind of wanted me to do it," he said. "I felt like since they did it that I should do it, too. It has been an enjoyable experience."
  The EHS band, Cook says, sounds "real good. There's a lot of talent within the 115 that's in the band. There's a lot of good individual players, but as a whole we're probably one of the best around here.
  "Usually, whenever you have something going on, you're thinking about other stuff and you have a lot of stress and things on your mind, music can be kind of like a safe haven," Cook said.
  "It's where you go, especially when you listen to this band, because they're really, really good. Listening to it and being a part of it kind of takes your mind off of whatever you're thinking of, and you kind of just get lost in what you're doing.
  "It makes you kind of slow down in this fast-paced society and living. It kind of gives you somewhere you can go and stop and listen in peace."
  Cook complements some of the other area high school bands. "Science Hill always has a good band, and Dobyns-Bennett is really known for their talent around here," he said.
  Cook is planning a career as a pharmacist. "My uncle, Mike Lingerfelt, owns a pharmacy called Lingerfelt Drug Center in downtown Elizabethton," he said. "I want to work there and possibly take over once Mike retires."