U.S. Gold Medal Swimmer Lydia Jacoby Also Plays In A Bluegrass String Band

A person in a pool

If you’re talented enough to win an Olympic gold medal in something, then it shouldn’t be a stretch to assume you might be talented in other departments as well.

That’s precisely the case with Team USA swimmer and recent gold medal winner Lydia Jacoby. In addition to being a world class swimmer, she also used to play several instruments and sing in the Snow River String Band.

At just 17-years-old, Jacoby shocked the world earlier this week when she took won the women’s 100-meter breaststroke race, edging out her American team mate, world record holder, and defending Gold Medalist Lilly King.

King raced well enough to win a Bronze Medal, finishing just behind Jacoby and South African Tatjana Schoenmaker.

She shared her excitement with NBC following the win.

“I was definitely racing for a medal. I knew I had it in me. 

I wasn’t really expecting a gold medal, so when I looked up and saw the scoreboard it was insane.

I definitely stressed myself out yesterday so I was just trying to feel good and feel happy going into it, and I feel like I did that.”

Jacoby is the first Alaskan to ever make the U.S. Olympic swim team, and now also the first Alaskan to ever bring home a Gold Medal in the sport.

According to the Associated Press, she grew up on the water. Her parents are both boat captains, taking tourists on whale-watching tours off the stunning Alaskan coast. The family also has a sailboat.

She joined her first swim team at age 6 and broke her first state record 6 years later.

“When I was about 12, I broke my first state record. 

That was kind of when I realized it was something that I excelled at.”

Footage of a crowd gathered back in Jacoby’s hometown of Seward, Alaska, has been all over the internet recently, as the passion and pride exuded by her fans is a reminder of just how special the Olympic games are.

The camera shook as her neighbors and friends toppled chairs, embraced each other in hugs, and fist pumped like they were the ones that just won Gold.

When she’s not training the pool, Jacoby also enjoys playing and singing music. As part of the Snow River String band, she has performed at music festivals around Alaska.

“In my town we used to have a bluegrass camp for kids every summer. 

We eventually formed a band and played together five or six years at different festivals in Alaska.”

Footage of her playing and singing at the 2018 Anchorage Folk Festival shows that she’s much more than just a swimmer.

“This video was of their performance on 1-19-2018, anchorage folk festival at Wendy Williamson Auditorium on campus of UAA Anchorage, Alaska.

Picking and singing great bluegrass , Karl Pfeiffenberger, Lucy Hankins, Lydia Jacoby, and Max Pfeiffenberger.”

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