WINNIPEG – When Manitoba Moose forward Austen Brassard isn’t picking corners, he’s picking strings. If it’s not a hockey stick in his hand, it’s probably a guitar which he first picked up at the age of 12.
“I started with piano when I was younger and then kinda got out of it.” said Brassard. “I wanted something a little cooler I guess so I chose guitar.”
It’s usually classic rock that strikes a chord for Brassard with an old Stevie Ray Vaughn DVD helping unearth his talent in his youth. And his musical talent has since turned into a collection.
“I have my electric, I have this acoustic, I have a couple other acoustics and like some cheaper electrics.” Brassard said. “Quite a few amps. I have a Fender twin reverb I think it is. I haven’t played it in a while but I have a pretty good collection.”
While you won’t catch him singing, he has done a couple small shows in the past and used to jam with now former Moose teammate Jay Harrison. But the Winnipeg Jets broke up the band by trading Harrison to the Chicago Blackhawks.
“I’m not like the guy playing, singing and stuff at the party.” said Brassard. “I just like to do it on my own, just to relax.”
The Jets 5th round draft pick in 2011 has 13 goals and 17 assists in 61 games this season. Hockey was his first love but the music has been a way to get his mind off the game.
“Hockey has always been number one, but music has been something to do on the side.” Brassard said. “Hockey is pretty big grind. You’re tired a lot. It’s a lot of physical stress so to just relax and play guitar and learn a couple new tunes, or just chill out is a nice thing to do.”
But with the Moose headed back on the road this weekend Brassard will go from shredding his guitar, back to shredding goalies.
WATCH: Manitoba Moose Austen Brassard shows his musical talents