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POULSBO All it takes is a little bass line, said jazz musician Tyler Lindsay, just before hitting the ebony and ivory to the tune of Linus and Lucy. His head tilts down, fingers fly and out comes the familiar refrain in all its rip roarin, ragtime glory.
At the same time, Ryan Lindsay plunks the four-string like a pro, and Christina Lindsay pounds out the beat on the drums, putting the pitch-perfect finish on the trio of sounds filling the Monday afternoon air.
Meet The Lindsays, a musical sibling triad with a big sound despite the small hands. None of the Lindsays are old enough to drive a car, yet each drives a melody like a big-league Birdland stage cat.
Christina, 8, plays on despite having just suffered an inevitable childhood woe: a shot at the doctors office.
Her face grimaces in comical complaint as parents Paul and Susan watch on, to be sure no one forgets her arm is nothing short of sore. But as the song progresses, a glimmer of smile grows, and the joy she finds in playing is as unmistakable as the talent she possesses.
But shes not the only one who possesses it.
Ryan, 11, delivers each note with the ease of a well-seasoned performer, like the simple snap of the fingers to a favorite New Orleans tune. Hes the charmer of the group, according to Susan. The one that makes eyes at all the ladies. But more than that, he enjoys spreading happiness through music, and thats something he and his brother and sister all share.
They love to play, Susan said. They love to touch peoples hearts and to bring smiles to their faces.
And that they have.
The Lindsays are currently being featured on HBO Familys The Music in Me, a documentary-style show featuring the kids instrumental affinity for the stage. They can also be seen each Friday night playing at Poulsbos Bayside Broiler. And as if those gigs arent plenty, reality television producers have had a field day courting the prodigies. Recently, Americas Got Talent representatives contacted Tyler, 13, who also plays the trumpet, bass and viola. Its likely hell make an appearance on an upcoming season of the American Idol-like program.
And why not? He can, of course, play the trumpet and the piano simultaneously.
The three virtuosos come from a line of talented musicians. It was through music that Paul, who previously taught at the Navy School of Music in Norfolk, Va., before joining the Navy Band Northwest, met Susan. He plays the trumpet and the drums and shes a master at the French horn and piano. The five, who also form a family brass band, moved to Poulsbo last November.
Now theyre injecting their soulful sound into their Little Norway surroundings, and people are taking note.
Thats no surprise, as Tyler isnt the only multi-instrumental child in the family. Ryan boasts skills on the trombone, and Christina takes a turn at both the saxophone and tuba. Both are also adept at the viola and piano.
While their age is obvious to any onlooker Christinas tuba is sweetly adorned with Disney princess stickers their sound is skilled and refined. Paul and Susan began teaching each of their kids music lessons when they began to show interest. For Tyler, that was age 3. For Ryan, it wasnt until age 5. But for all its become a way the family can be together, playing as one to the last bebop measure. And to Tyler, Ryan and Christina, its no musical phenom. Its simply life.
They dont really know any different, Paul said. Its just the way its always been.
Spending all that time together doesnt drive them apart. Instead, the toe-tapping three take their impressive hobby in stride, between songs laughing and discussing Simon Cowells latest critical zinger. After forming their band as an after-school job of sorts though they are home-schooled the three say they think its a musical trio that will stay together for some time to come. To Paul and Susan its something of which theyre immeasurably proud, and rightfully so.
While watching the three cruise through another musical number, Susan put it succinctly with a mothers knowing smile on her face: Its just an incredible blessing.