The John Lennon Education Tour Bus

Next Destination: Hough High School

Cornelius, NC



June 03, 2010

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros

Written by The Lennon Bus


Sure music education isn’t all that it can be in schools and that needs to change, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist in other places and in other forms. To me music education isn’t just being exposed to music and arts through the schools, it’s also about being exposed to music and art through friends and family. Music education is the awareness and interaction with a part of culture that has been with us since the dawn of man. I’ve come to realize that all of my good friends in life have one thing in common. They all educate me in music. They all bring a piece of pie to the table that I haven’t tried yet. And I try to do the same for them.

Every morning the on board staff of the Lennon Bus has to wake up early and clean the bus for that days session. For me it became a period of meditation. Someone would plug their iPod, Mac, or iPhone into the sound system of the bus. We would then patch the sound so that both studios would be bumping music as loud as possible and then go about cleaning. The tasks of spraying and wiping something with windex required very little brian power (even at 6am) and so my mind would be able to dive into the music. Often we would switch who picked the music, and this is where the education happened. The question asked most during these hours of cleaning was always often “Who’s this?” followed by a close second, “Did you already wipe this down?” While I was on the road I learned of so many new artist during those cleaning times.

This was a great time of Music Education and yet you’d never think to look there.

David Westermann and I sat in the St.Mary’s Middle School parking lot when I was in 7th grade and he played for me Sgt.Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band in it’s entirety while we waited for our mothers to return from a parent teacher meeting. That was the first time I heard that album and to say the least it changed my life. I learned a lot in that hour as so many souls did the first time they heard that record.

My best friend Carey Kopp played Rappin’ 4-Tay’s “I’ll Be Around” for me one day as we drove around Ann Arbor, Michigan in his beat up Saturn. It was the first time I heard what I would call “conscience” hip hop and it opened my mind to the idea that music can strongly address social issues and be used to educate those on situations you may not encounter in your own life. To this day it is my favorite hip hop track.

In High School my girlfriend used Paul McCartney’s song “Baby, I’m Amazed” to clarify feelings and emotions after a messy situation I created with good old high school drama. We have listened to countless songs together, but I still remember that night sitting in my car with her as we both communicated so profoundly without either one of us speaking a word.

“Music the great communicator / Use two sticks to make it in the nature” that’s a line from a Red Hot Chili Peppers song and it’s so simple and so true. Music is the great communicator and in my life it has been there for me often when my words could not be. Music Education is everywhere.

Music is the soundtrack of life so if you start paying attention you can learn something new everyday.

Here is my latest lesson in music education:

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros check out this track “Home”

Next entry: What DAW Should I Use?

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