Musician Carl Cole reflects on 50-year career

Local News

FREEPORT, Ill. (WTVO) — A beloved stateline musician celebrated 50 years in the industry.

Carl Cole does it all. From playing the organ at church services to educating children at Young Eagle’s Success Club in Rockford, Cole’s passion is contagious.

The maestro was honored with a Golden Jubilee Celebration Sunday night at Holy Temple Church, 520 W Ringold St. He began performing when he was 10-years-old, and remembered the first time he got paid for doing what he loved.

“I played my first wedding when I was 11, because I knew the wedding march by heart, and made my first $25 when I was 11…. I’m just very blessed,” Cole said. “I’ve played at restaurants, events, anything you can think of. I’m very blessed and very excited about being in music.”

Other highlights of Cole’s career include playing with the Rockford Symphony Orchestra and organizing the YES Club’s annual performances at the Illinois State Fair.

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