The free ticket was for people under 18 because the band didn’t want their friends to worry about paying. They just wanted them to come and celebrate the music.
The alternative band from Conover stepped into the spotlight during the pandemic with their performance at the 2021 Newton-Conover variety show. This is where the band covered the Pixies’ song “Caribou.” After receiving positive feedback, the band was inspired to continue practicing and performing. The band performs originals and covers.
Band members are Cole Larson, on bass and vocals. Abram Hilton, on rhythm guitar and lead vocals; Will Elliott on guitar. Jayden Ramseur, on keyboard; and Tyler Dinh on drums. All of the band members, except one, Dinh, graduated from high school this year.
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Lead singer Abram Helton came up with the name “Lily of the Valley” in reference to the TV show “Breaking Bad,” and bassist Cole Larson said he liked it, too. Now people know them by name, so Larson said he doesn’t think they’ll ever change it.
After the band rehearsed “Dead Birds Come in Twos,” a song written by Abram Hilton, guitarist Will Elliott said he was happy to get together to play music.
“These kids have made it through high school during a global pandemic using music as a coping mechanism,” Larson’s mother, Jessica, said.
Larson participated in marching band at Discovery High School, but once that was stripped due to the coronavirus, his mother said he was devastated. Cole would spend hours in his room playing guitar, and he and Abram began writing music.
Jessica Larson said their music helped them get through the dark times many young people faced during the pandemic.
When COVID-19 restrictions were lifted, the band was able to build a fan base by playing at various venues. Lily of the Valley performed at the junior and senior prom at Discovery High School and Catawba Valley Brewing Co. and Hickory’s Got Talent, where Cole Larson and Abram Helton won second place.
Bassist Cole Larson, who was in the classical guitar program at UNC School of the Arts, said he’s excited to see where the band takes them. He said he believes the upcoming show will be a great opportunity for the band to showcase its talents and songs.
Larson will attend Appalachian State University in the fall. He said he plans to study music composition and theory. He received a Hayes Young Artist Guitar Scholarship and said he will play guitar in the Marching Mountaineers, App State’s band.
Drummer Tyler Dinh studies at Belmont University and said he has been playing drums since he was five years old. Dinh said he wants to pursue a career in the music industry. He said he wanted to work on mixing and mastering the band’s original songs.