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Raccoon Rambler

The student news site of Frisco High School

Raccoon Rambler

The student news site of Frisco High School

Raccoon Rambler

The Best of Both Worlds

Assistant Basketball Coach Balances Passion For Sports And Music
From left to right, Beyond Destiny’s bass guitarist Ryan Brady, vocalist and guitarist Nicole Heath and drummer Larry Logan Sr. perform a set at Six Springs Tavern.

The room is flooded with blue light and four figures make their way to the stage as excited cheers popcorn around the room. Moments of anticipation pass and audience members wait for the show to begin. Finally, notes reach the fans and the headlining act, Beyond Destiny, is on stage.

After an electric show featuring original songs as well as classics, girls basketball coach Nicole Heath, who is also Beyond Destiny’s vocalist and guitarist, exits the stage and greets fans — some of which are also her coworkers.

For as long as Heath has loved music, she has also loved sports. Her motivation to do both has transcended into her adulthood. By day, Heath works at the school, coaching young athletes and giving back to a sport she loves, basketball. However, at night she performs in front of live audiences and nurtures her other passion: music.

Heath has been the lead singer of Beyond Destiny while also coaching basketball for the past four years and lets her passions fuel her.

“I started playing piano at 5 and I wrote my first song at 6,” Heath said. “My mom was like, ‘What is happening?!’ So [my parents] realized that I had some talent.”

From a young age, Heath has been musically inclined and as she grew up, she participated in choir.

“I started singing when I could talk,” Heath said. “I would sing commercials, and then as I got older, I was singing in church choir… I was in Pop Sensations, which was like, they took the 12 best singers/dancers in the choir, and we went out all over the US performing.”

Beyond Destiny vocalist and guitarist Nicole Heath performs a set with band members Ryan Brady, far left, and Larry Logan Sr, far right.

Music wasn’t Heath’s only focus because she was equally involved in athletics.

“In high school I did everything: volleyball, basketball, track,” Heath said. “And then I did basketball and softball in the summers. So sports and music have always been an integral part of my life. Then I got a full ride to play basketball at Texas Tech… I was part of the National Championship Team, and I went overseas to play for a couple of years in Italy.”

After graduating from Texas Tech, in the mid 2000s, Heath began her coaching career outside San Angelo at Sterling City High School. However, she did not leave her musical career behind.

“When I got to Sterling City, I was coaching and teaching, and Matt Cleveland, the band director, found my CD,” Heath said. “And he said, ‘You know, we should get together and jam sometime.’”

This interaction led to the first version of the Beyond Destiny band, which was composed of coworkers that came together through their love for music.

“[Cleveland] was the band director, and he played piano,” Heath said. “And then Kevin McSpedden – the tennis coach – joined and he played the drums. And so we got together at Matt’s house in the evening and started jamming, and the chemistry was immediate. So they said, ‘We should start a band.’”

Later, Heath left Sterling City High School and Beyond Destiny met an involuntary end. Heath was pushed back to square one, but she was not done.

“About four years ago a friend of mine said, ‘There’s a management company looking for artists, and I think you should go try out,’” Heath said. “So I took my guitar and I sang one of my songs, and they signed me that day to a management deal. I was like, ‘Cool, Let’s do it!’ They said, ‘Go find you a band and we’ll start booking you guys shows and go from there.’”

Heath was ready to start a new chapter of Beyond Destiny and put out advertisements for auditions. After gaining interest, she began the audition process by sending out three of her favorite, most popular songs to listen to and learn.

“If I can send you some music, and you learn how to play it, and you pretty much have it down, you can pick it up pretty quickly,” Heath said. “That tells me that, one – you’re talented, two – you understand music theory and three – we probably can have pretty good chemistry together, ’cause that’s the way I am.”

Eventually, Heath found drummer Larry Logan Sr., keyboardist Keith Bailey and bass guitarist Ryan Brady, and this became the new, and current, lineup for Beyond Destiny. The band went straight to work, and soon they were playing shows.

Beyond Destiny members perform a set on St. Patrick’s Day.

“When I say our sets are tight, it’s because we practice a lot,” Heath said. “I remember when we did our first show here in the metroplex, it was at a place called Poor David’s Pub in Dallas. That was our first show as a group. It was an amazing show, lots of people showed up, and every single person that came up to us, they said that it sounded like we had been playing together forever.”

Heath’s coworkers are encouraging of both her life on the court and in music, and many staff members frequent Beyond Destiny’s shows.

“I love the energy that [Heath] brings,” English teacher Melanie Newberry said. “I love that she sings a mix of songs. She sings oldie songs and current songs and then a mix of their own original songs. It’s just constant upbeat, like there’s no downtime, there’s no lagging there’s nothing they play that you won’t like. You’ll recognize the songs, and she’s just really engaging with the audience.”

Heath is very appreciative of the support she receives and offers showtimes to the staff so they can attend her performances.

“They’re always asking me, ‘When do you play next, when are your shows,” Heath said. “Usually I’ll send them to my Instagram, Facebook and website. If I have a show that’s close to Frisco, I’ll email them. What’s really neat is we had a show last year at the Frisco Rail Yard and a ton of them came!”

FHS teachers support Beyond Destiny and pose for a picture at the Rail Yard.

Heath loves to share her craft with others, and the shows are easy for anyone to enjoy.

“She is incredibly talented, and their music is really fun and energetic, so I think it’s super cool she does that,” English teacher Lisa Wilson said. “If you want to have a really good time, hear really good music, have a great time with your friends be blown away by some amazing sounds, you should go see Beyond Destiny.”

Details about Beyond Destiny’s upcoming shows and releases can be found at officialbeyonddestiny.com and @officialbeyonddestiny on Instagram and Facebook.

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