CommunitySuper Seniors


Super Senior: Ed Gunsch of Billings still rocking the sax into his late 80s

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Posted at 5:58 PM, Mar 25, 2024

BILLINGS - On any given weekend you’ll find Ed Gunsch on stage - singing or playing the saxophone.

It’s something he’s been doing for a long, long time.

“It gets in your blood. It’s something you enjoy doing,” Ed says.

Ed has been playing recently with a local band called Little Joe and the Cartwrights. Their music - mostly classic country - seems to draw people to the dance floor.

“People say, how you can play country? I say 'cause I don’t know a note of music,” he says.

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Growing up in Billings, Ed says his parents couldn’t afford a musical instrument for him—so it wasn’t until after he got out of the Marines that he started playing. He signed up for service at the age of 16.

“I seen a John Wayne movie 'Sands of Iwo Jima' and I said, I want to go in Marines. I spent three years. Didn’t hurt me a bit. Best thing that ever happened to me,” he said.

After his stint in the military, he bought a used saxophone for $100 and began making enough to help pay for the groceries at times.

“it was just a weekend thing because I was an iron worker for 20 years. It helped put groceries on the table during the slow winter months.”

Now at the age of 89 he is still going strong singing and playing the saxophone.

"There was a gal in here asking her friend, how come he don’t run out of air? Because he is full of hot air, she said. It’s just something you enjoy doing,” Ed smiles.

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And that enjoyment is evident when you listen and watch Ed and the rest of the band on stage.

They’re obviously having fun.

“I just enjoy it all. If it gets to where it’s no fun anymore than I don’t want to do it. But it’s a fun thing,” he says.