Thursday, June 28, 2012

Kids Say the Darnedest Things About Music History

The subject of Bach came up when we were working on a section of a high school marching show for next fall...

KID: You said that Bach only wrote for piano, because the saxophone wasn't invented yet, right?
ME: Actually, the piano wasn't even invented until partway through Bach's lifetime.
KID: Really? So what kinds of instruments were alive in Bach's time?

Monday, June 25, 2012

Kids Say the Darnedest Things About Singing

This beginner was playing low F for the first time, and I was showing him how to make an "AH" sound to open the throat...

ME: (plays low F)
KID: (sings along with me and matches my pitch almost perfectly)
ME: Good! That was a real good job of singing .
KID: Really? I could get a job singing?
ME: Ha, that's not what I said; I'll let the American Idol judges make that decision. I said you did a *good* job of singing.
MOM (in living room): (laughs)
KID: Aww man, I thought you said I could get a job singing!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Kids Say the Darnedest Things About Reeds

It's always funny to see the looks on the faces of brand-new beginners as they wet a reed for the first time...

ME: So what do you think--the reed doesn't taste too good, does it?
KID: It tastes like a mouse ate some wood, then spitted it out and gave it to someone else to try.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Kids Say the Darnedest Things About Sharps

Today, the subject for this eighth-grader was E-sharp, and we started by discussing the effect of sharps in the first place...

ME: So what does a sharp do to a note?  And I want a more detailed answer than "it makes it sharper."
KID: Aww man, that's what I was gonna say!
ME: No, I want a little more detail than that. So again, what does a sharp do to a note?
KID: Makes it louder?

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

It's Summer, But Kids Still Say the Darnedest Things

This one was learning the Region Jazz etudes for the first time...

ME: This next tune is called a ballad. Do you know what a ballad is?
KID: Something you vote with?

Saturday, June 02, 2012

The Class of 2012

It's graduation day for the two high schools where I teach! Congrats to Tyler, Tyler, Tyler and Tyler (lol)...along with Alex, Bobby, Brad, Cailey, Cameron, Connor and Drew. Some of you I only taught for a short time, while others were with me all seven years of secondary school. I"m happy that many of you will continue to play in college, but no matter what, I hope that music will continue to be an important part of your lives.