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Sammamish boy drums to different beat, video goes viral

Jonathan Carollo, 11, stands near his parent’s Super Queen, super-capacity plus, 14-cycle washing machine. A recent video of the Sammamish boy’s ability to drum on the machine has gained more than 1 million hits on YouTube. - Kevin Endejan/Issaquah & Sammamish Reporter
Jonathan Carollo, 11, stands near his parent’s Super Queen, super-capacity plus, 14-cycle washing machine. A recent video of the Sammamish boy’s ability to drum on the machine has gained more than 1 million hits on YouTube.
— image credit: Kevin Endejan/Issaquah & Sammamish Reporter

Susan Carollo wasn’t sure what her son Jonathan was up to.

The Sammamish mother of three heard quick bursts of banging on the washing machine, but when she investigated, the culprit, her middle child, had already vanished.

“By the time you could get in there and say, ‘Why are you banging on the washing machine,’ he was done, he was gone,” she said.

It turns out Jonathan, 11, was simply rehearsing for his big performance  —  a video that is approaching 1.5 million views on YouTube.

When Dan Carollo, a successful acoustic guitarist, first noticed what his son was doing, he knew it was special.

For fun, he filmed Jonathan performing a 1 minute, 13 second solo on the family’s Super Queen, super-capacity plus, 14-cycle washer. Using everything from the lid to the stainless steel inside the machine, Jonathan created a percussion beat reminiscent of a one-man drum line.

“The washing machine really just had the right combination of sound to make it interesting,” Dan said. “That raw, original sound, he just really loves that.”

When Dan showed the video to his friends, they told him it would be a hit on the internet. He scoffed at the idea.

“Someone I was talking to said this will go viral and I was like ‘Oh, right,’” he said.

Posted in late September, the video had only 200 views up until Christmas Eve. In a two-week span, it has gained well over 1 million views.

“I don’t have a good explanation as to why it happened,” said Dan, who noted the video caught fire after he posted to Reddit.com

The increase in popularity has already resulted in national exposure on “The Today Show” and “Good Morning America.”

“So far it’s been all fun and games, no problem at all,” said Susan, who moments later answered a call from the “Ellen DeGeneres Show.”

Jonathan, a fifth grader at McAuliffe Elementary, said he’s surprised, but pleased by the attention. He became interested in drumming after listening to one of his dad’s favorite bands, Rush, and the group’s drummer, Neil Peart.

He got his first drum set, an old Pearl model, a little over a year ago and has taken lessons once a week since.

But he’s always enjoyed making beats around the house.

“If I can’t use the washing machine because there’s clothes in there, I like to do it on furniture or on myself,” he said. “My sister doesn’t really like it when I’m going to drum practice and I’m drumming on the seats.”

Dan, who has released several of his own albums, said he isn’t surprised by Jonathan’s ability.

“He has a unique talent for recognizing rhythm, he’s just quite good at doing things fast,” he said.

Jonathan isn’t sure where he wants to take drumming yet. He aspires to be in the school band and possibly a drum line, but that’s as far as he’s looking ahead.

“I don’t think it’s going to be my job,” he said, noting right now he might be better playing the washing machine than his actual drum set.

Jonathan’s newest obsession is performing home science experiments.

And with his intuition and creativity, there’s no telling  —  maybe the next viral internet video is right around the corner.

“He really just likes to discover new things. He has an exploratory way of learning,” Dan said.

 

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