This Rock “Requires Action”


Lights flood the room, the sound of the bass vibrates the ground, the seats are filled with starstruck students. During lunch on October 15, 2022, Steinbrenner’s auditorium was anything but quiet as the band “Requires Action” took the stage by storm. Photo courtesy of Saule Kondra.

The strum of the bass, the clash of a cymbal, the sound of classic rock and roll is recognizable from miles away. This genre of music, often associated as a form of youthful rebellion, is getting a new look at Steinbrenner from the people one would least expect to be involved in the world of rock.

It all began around 2014 when Shaun Fowler, a social studies teacher at Steinbrenner, witnessed Mr. Rocka, a former science teacher, perform a ‘rock band’ skit in front of Senior send off. That’s when Fowler had an epiphany. “I can do that with a real guitar,” said Fowler. After talking to some other teachers about his teacher-band idea with other staff possessing hidden musical talents, “Requires Action” was born that very next year.

“Requires action” being the lowest possible rating on the Hillsborough county rubric a teacher can receive according to their supervisor or boss is what inspired the bands name. Fowler claims that the name of the band is facetious and that the teachers within the musical crew are “…in reality, the best.” Said Fowler. Even administration, such as the principal, show their support for the band. “Mrs. Ewell has encouraged us to play,” said Fowler.

The members of the band all seem to have fond memories of music from their youth. Chad Ebright, a math teacher and drummer for the band has been playing for a very long time. His passion started in fourth grade and has been one of his hobbies to this day. Ebright joined the band after he saw them perform with a student as the drummer. “I asked Fowler if they wanted a teacher” said Ebright. That’s when Ebright became a part of the crew. “We played in a lot of bands growing up” Said Ebright.

The teachers within the band, including Fowler, Ebright, Donald Sizemore and Loyd Dillon, have held constant positions in the group however some students have joined them as well. Jesse Soloman and Grant Hooker, a pair of seniors at Steinbrenner, both joined the band unexpectedly. “Fowler saw me carrying my bass around” Said Soloman “They really saw me in the hallway and went, that one, right there.” As for Hooker, “Fowler came up to me and he basically just asked if I would be interested. And I was like heck yeah, I love rock music.” The teachers instantly bonded with the students. “Grant, he owned it. He came ready to sing” and “Jess was ready to go from day one and was really excited to play with us,” said Fowler. In the case of “Requires Action” the more, the merrier. “It’s more fun for everyone when a couple kids join” said Ebright.

After practicing one to two times each week on October 15, 2022, the band had its first showcase of the year for the student body. Posters were placed on almost every corner to grab people’s attention as they walked by, and it certainly worked. The performance took place in the auditorium during both scheduled lunch periods and the seats were so packed that many students had to stand in the back in order to watch the show.

“It was so electric. It was so much fun.” Said Soloman. The energy from the crowd was lively and many were even recording. There was also a touching moment when the crowd started to sing along to “Livin’ on a Prayer” by Bon Jovi as one united group. “It brings people together,” said Hooker.

After the successful performance and large group of viewers in the last performance, the band plans to do at least two more shows this school year. One more in the second semester before testing season begins and a goodbye performance for the seniors graduating from Steinbrenner at the end of the year. “Requires Action” is living proof here at Steinbrenner that rock in roll in fact, never dies.