Many student athletes find themselves in the spotlight from the moment they step foot onto the field for a big game. For some, the spotlight does not end when the game is over.

Tyler Reilly, sophomore and member of the men’s lacrosse team, said that in addition to being an athlete, he is also a singer and songwriter.

Photo illustration by Kyle Bailey

Photo illustration by Kyle Bailey

“Music has always been something that interested me. When I got a guitar for Christmas in fourth grade I was hooked, so I guess that is when it all started,” Reilly said.  When it comes to writing his music, Reilly said that he gets a lot of the inspiration for his songs from anything that is relevant to his life and to the lives of other people.

“I like to leave the interpretation of my songs up to the listeners and hopefully everyone that hears them can feel something and relate to it in some way. That’s the goal, at least,” Reilly said.

According to Reilly, he has performed in front of a crowd multiple times. He said that performing is what makes being a musician rewarding because he wants people to hear his songs and get the good and bad feedback, since it is the only way to improve.

Between being an athlete and finding time to play and practice his music, Reilly said that he considers himself lucky to play for a team that respects their players having other interests. “My window for lacrosse is closing quicker than my window for music. I have two years left to be on the field and I am definitely invested in making sure I am as prepared as possible to be the best player I can be every time I am out there,” Reilly said. He continued, “In the off-season is when I work most on my music in terms of writing and shows and all that. I am lucky enough to play for a coaching staff that respects their players having other interests and I know that they’re supportive of what I’m doing off the field.” For now, Reilly said that his music is just a hobby, but the dream to do more with it is definitely there.

“For now, with school and lacrosse going on, music is just a hobby. But the dream is there. I have been to Nashville and it is definitely a place I could see myself living, so I guess time will only tell,” Reilly said.

Along with Reilly, Joe Libby, an outfielder for the Owls’ baseball team, also enjoys singing, playing guitar and writing his own music.

Libby stated that besides singing and playing guitar he also plays the drums. According to Libby, he began playing the guitar when he was twelve with his best friend, who passed away two years later. Libby stated that his friend is one of the reasons why he continues to play music.

“The other reason, of course, is the fact that I love playing music and writing songs. Before choosing Keene State in 2012, I considered music school, but chose not to because I wanted to play college baseball,” Libby stated.  He continued, “Sometimes I think about going away after college to pursue it, but that still stands as a dream as I get closer and closer to the real world.”  When he is writing his songs, Libby stated that he tries to keep everything he writes about very real and about true events, but tries to maintain catchy hooks. In comparing the nerves between being on the field or on the stage, Libby stated that the crowd at a game continues to be more nerve-racking for him.  “A crowd at a game for some reason is the most nerve-racking for me. When performing on stage with a band, you already know you’re going to sound good or amuse the crowd because they are already there to hear you perform,” Libby stated.

He continued, “In baseball, it’s not just the people watching, it’s just getting nervous before the game starts, but after the first at-bat it all goes away completely. Between baseball, music and being a student, Libby stated that most of his time goes to sports and his schoolwork, and makes finding time for music a little difficult.

“I usually play during the night time with friends here in Keene,” Libby stated.

Sophomore and member of the men’s swimming and diving team, Shahar Resman also weighed in on his interest in music.  According to Resman, his interest in music started five years ago when he tried to find something to relax himself between swim practices. He stated that he plays the drums in addition to being a DJ. Resman stated that his music is just a hobby to him and that the only time he has performed was in front of his family.

“I don’t play very often, but when I do it is often between practices and classes,” Resman stated, “I like to play classic rock, especially U2 and the Beatles.”


Brogan Wessell can be contacted at

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