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ROCKchester festival preview: Interview with Remi Moulder of Project Substitute

ROCKchester festival preview: Interview with Remi Moulder of Project Substitute

ROCKchester is a local music and arts festival showcasing the growing youth music and art scene in Rochester. Curated by teenagers, the event focuses on the participation of young creators, musicians, and artists.

In the lead up to the event, the Med City Beat will publish interviews with some of the featured artists. Our second installment is with Remi Moulder of Project Substitute (see the first interview here). The interview was conducted by ROCKchester consultant Terri Allred.

What is the name of your band?

Our group name is Project Substitute.

Where did you get that name?

We chose the name because Marius and I were a part of a jazz group during the summer which couldn't continue because many of the members went back to their universities. We both wanted to continue playing shows, so we started a group with Mitchell Nelson to be kind of like a substitute group for the school year; therefore, the name Project Substitute. Now we consider this to be our main group.

Who are your band members?

We currently have six members in the group:

  • Marius Toussaint on Tenor Saxophone- 18 years old, Lourdes High School
  • Mitchell Nelson on Drumset- 18 years olds, Lourdes High School
  • Charlie Thom on Trombone- 18 years old, Lourdes High School
  • Remi Moulder on Guitar- 19 years old, RCTC
  • Jonathan Muroya on Bass- 18 years old, John Marshall High School
  • Abigail Rech on Vocals 18 years old, John Marshall High School

Photo: Project Substitute

What kind of music do you play?

We primarily play jazz, but also dabble in funk.

Do you write your own music or play covers?

At the moment we are playing covers, but we’re currently writing original tunes.

How did you come to play together?

Marius, Mitchell, Charlie, and Remi were friends throughout high school and first started playing jazz together in the school jazz band. Remi met Jonathan when he was playing bass at a Good Morning Bedlam show. Remi met Abigail while working with the John Marshall choir.

Who are your musical inspirations?

Many of our main influences range from classic players such as Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, and Joe Pass to more contemporary players such as Jonathan Kreisberg and Michel Petrucciani.

Who is the least organized in your group?

Since every single member of the group has fairly busy schedules with extra activities, everyone keeps themselves quiet organized and on top of things. Without the hard work from each member this group wouldn't even be possible!


Tell us an inside joke.

We play a tune called "Watermelon Man" by Herbie Handcock. When we were first preparing to practice with Jonathan, he thought we were joking with him and that it wasn't a real song. So now, every time we play it, we look at Jonathan and tell him it's not a real song.

What is the funniest, weirdest thing that has ever happened at a gig?

We were once playing a show consisting of a bassist, Mitchell Nelson, and Remi Moulder. We were playing the song “Sugar.” As Remi was just about to end his solo, a good friend of ours, Hisato, took out his horn and started whaling away from in the crowd. To say that everyone in room, including the band members, were pleasantly surprised would be an understatement. 

Why are you excited to play at ROCKchester?

We are excited to play at ROCKchester because it will help us reach out to people who may not have heard of us and who are not in the jazz community within Rochester.

What do you want people to know about you and the teen art scene in Rochester?

There are so many incredibly talented teens who find enjoyment performing and creating art. Because of this, it is important to go out and show support for these young artists whenever possible.

ROCKchester Music and Arts Festival is scheduled for May 15 at Wicked Moose Bar and Grill in Rochester. For more information about or to purchase tickets, visit

The Med City Beat is a proud sponsor of ROCKchester.

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