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There is always more to learn.

Here at the end of “Blackout Tuesday,” I find myself at a loss for how to process what is happening in my country to my fellow humans. I imagine many others are in a similar space, wondering “What can *I* do?”

I’d like to share a few resources dedicated to the work of black musicians. I am personally learning so much during this time, and I thought this might be a fitting way for me, a music educator, to contribute to the learning of others.

  1. NASPAAM: An organization promoting the effective inclusion of African American music in our music education programs - not simply a “token” inclusion, but a piece of music ed that is as viable and valuable as any other genre of music

  2. NAfME article: An introduction to teaching African American history in the music classroom, complete with a sample schedule digging into specific events and musicians.

  3. Smithsonian online exhibit: An overview of African American music before and since the institution of American slavery; includes links to info on historical events, musicians, instruments, musical styles, etc.

  4. Decolonizing the Music Room article: A conversation with Black music educators about the ups and downs of Black History Month music programs - again discussing the value of such programs beyond “token” inclusions.

  5. MBC: Highlighting the works of Black composers around the world and encouraging young Black musicians in their own pursuits of music performance and composition.

  6. Institute for Composer Diversity: For all the data geeks out there! This organization maintains records of musical performances based on the diversity of said performances; has databases for works and composers, as well as statistical analyses of this information from recent performance seasons

I have always prided myself on providing my students with a broad variety of musical genres and cultural heritages, but there is still more to learn. I’m ready for it ... are you? 🖤🎶

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