Ethan Hein: Everyone Can & Should Be Making Music

Ethan Hein: Everyone Can & Should Be Making Music

A long treatise, but worth the read.  Some big thoughts that are obvious to too few of us in the Music Ed world:

Not everyone needs to be able to play or appreciate classical music. Maybe people just need to be able to sequence basslines for their hip-hop tracks, or play three-chord rock, or understand a little music theory, or play rumbly ambient one-chord drones. The kids who want to dive deeper and move on to more challenging material can still do so. If everyone else is engaged actively with music, the pros will find they’ll have a much bigger and more enthusiastic audience. And maybe America will be a little less emotionally barren.

 And also:

If we want music not to be “dumbed down” we need to be honest about where sophistication lies. If you want to learn about functional tonal harmony, by all means go to the classics. If you want to learn about rhythm, go to Africa, the Caribbean, India, Indonesia and American dance music. If you want to learn about timbre and space, go to electronica and hip-hop. Pretending that all the answers lie in scores written by men in powdered wigs is the real dumbing down of the music curriculum.

 What I don’t get is why there aren’t more people getting out there and saying these things.  What worries me is people my (and Ethan’s) age still bristling at these ideas.

Author: Will Kuhn

I teach music technology to high schoolers. I do some other stuff too. @willkuhn on Twitter.

2 thoughts on “Ethan Hein: Everyone Can & Should Be Making Music”

  1. I also think that being realistic about sophistication includes people sitting behind big rigs of mixers and plugins and say they are a producer yet don’t have chops to show of any of it?

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