Just Push Play

You Call This Music?

Posted on: April 6, 2011

 If I have to sit through another class where there is a discussion criticizing today’s popular music negatively, I am going to scream! For those of you reading this that don’t know me, let me just start off by telling you a little background on myself. Music is my life. I’ve been singing for almost 12 years, have written some music, and attend musical events on a regular basis. I have my Bachelors Degree in Music Industry and have interned at some of the music business’s biggest companys. I am now going for my Masters in Music Education at a great school that I love. The one issue in Music Education that I feel passionately about is the variety of music that children are being exposed to in schools.

     This topic of conversation always manages to sneak its way into every one of my classes on more than one occasion. The way the discussion usually goes has to do with how kids don’t know what quality music is, the future of music is going downhill because of the music being played on the radio today, blah, blah, blah, etc., etc., etc. I guess I find it suprising because I am a huge supporter of today’s popular music, as well as other types, such as classical, musical theater, opera, and I’m starting to explore world music.

     I don’t think it matters what type of music you are using in the classroom as long as it is being used for an educational purpose. All of the music types I listed above should be exposed to the children. I especially think teachers should start with today’s popular music- that’s what the kids know and can relate to. If you start with something they know they will be more open to exploring other types of music.

    I feel that these discussions that I’ve heard in school almost portray people as ignorant of classical music. Sure, I’ll admit if I had to choose between listening to Gershwin’s “Rhapsodie in Blue” or Florence + The Machine’s “Drumming Song”, I’d go with Florence. That’s just my personal preference. But being someone so into music and wanting to educate others in this subject, I wouldn’t put down another type of music. Just because you personally would not listen to something, doesn’t make it unappealing to everyone else.

     Educators, especially music educators, shouldn’t be ignorant to any type of music, just as they don’t want their students to be ignorant of classical music. Instead they should educate themselves in music they don’t know much about. 

Checkout some of the music below and broaden your musical exposure:

Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto 1- B Flat Minor

Renee Fleming singing “O Mio Babbino Caro”

Florence + The Machine’s “Drumming Song”

Katy Perry ft. Kanye West “ET” 

Miri Ben Ari “Chillen In The Key of E”

The Band Perry’s “If I Die Young”

Aerosmith’s “Eat The Rich”

Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong “They Can’t That Away From Me”

“I’d Give My Life For You” from Miss Saigon

Also checkout www.globalvoices.info for great World Music resources

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