Iowa band Foot-Notes celebrates 25th anniversary with World’s Largest Schottische

1,881 dancers partake in folk dance; Guinness World  Record sought  Sara Stromseth-Troy DECORAH, IOWA – What should an Iowa band specializing in Scandinavian and Scandinavian-American old-time dance music do to celebrate its 25th anniversary? How about attempting to set a Guinness World Record? Foot-Notes is a band based in Decorah, Iowa, a town in the northeast corner ...
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Iowa’s Sopha Sisters spread joy of singing far and wide

Sara Stromseth-Troy CRESCO, IOWA --Nestled in the Northeast corner of Iowa, four young sisters raise their voices in song, their harmonic blend often stopping passersby in their tracks. Addie, 14, Josie, 12, Ella, 10 and Gwen, 9, are the daughters of Steve and Julie Sopha of Cresco, Iowa. Largely self-taught and surrounded by a music-loving family, the girls listen to their...
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Guitarist Kyle Chapman wishes for ‘A thriving music scene in every community’

Sara Stromseth-Troy Note: We first met Kyle Chapman in the feature story about 6-year-old guitarist and Beatles fan King Tobias. Kyle is King’s guitar teacher. In this piece, Kyle talks about his band, Fir Drive, and the recently released debut album, ‘The Block EP’, along with his dreams of seeing a thriving music scene in every community in the United States. LOS BANOS, CALI...
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Voices of Harmony, Part 2

The Kids of Harmony Project Harmony Project, a Los Angeles-based organization with national affiliates dedicated to music education for youth in low-income communities, has been recognized as one of the most effective arts-based youth interventions in the nation. The Spirit of Harmony Foundation is proud to be a partner in their live-changing efforts. Students involved in Harmo...
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King Tobias: Living His Musical Dream Part 2

Sara Stromseth-Troy In the first installment of this article we met guitar prodigy and ultimate Beatles fan King Tobias and his family, and learned how Todd Rundgren facilitated King meeting one of his idols.  In Part 2, King's dreams come true. KING MEETS RINGO STARR Richard Kerris describes the meeting between King and Ringo Starr: “As soon as Ringo met King, he s...
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King Tobias: Living His Musical Dream Part 1

Sara Stromseth-Troy A 6-year-old San Jose, California boy and avid Beatles fan, King Tobias, is living the musical dream of his young life. The precocious guitar player, who, in less than one year of lessons, has already mastered numerous songs by the Fab Four, got to meet two of his musical heroes (or, in King’s word, ‘brothers’): Ringo Starr and Paul McCartney. Ki...
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Music Education: Opportunities Missed and Taken

Cliff Yankovich The first part of this piece might be subtitled “Rebel Without a Clue” and has to do with the regrets that plague me for not capitalizing on a musical education that was right in my own house. My hope in sharing it is that some young person somewhere might read it and be motivated to take full advantage of a musical opportunity that might be staring he or sh...
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Seattle Music Partners

Kevin Roberson This speech was delivered by Kevin Roberson, parent of a current student in the Seattle Music Partners program, at the Seattle Music Partners 15th Anniversary Celebration and Fundraiser on March 25th, 2015.  Seattle Music Partners is an after school music nonprofit that provides free lessons, instruments, and transportation to elementary school students in Seattl...
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Música do Coração, Part 2. Twin Sons of Different Baianas

Alan Meerow [PLEASE NOTE: Most of the music tracks in this post contain a link that will open a new window in YouTube] Bahia, the largest of Brazil's Northeast states, is also the bastion of Afro-Brazilian culture, rich in history and marvelous music.  Two contemporaries, children  of the 50's and 60's and friends since college, have forged their unique musical paths, but came ...
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Voices of Harmony, Part 1

The Kids of Harmony Project Harmony Project, a Los Angeles-based organization with national affiliates dedicated to music education for youth in low-income communities, has been recognized as one of the most effective arts-based youth interventions in the nation.  The Spirit of Harmony Foundation is proud to be a partner in their live-changing efforts.  Students involved in Har...
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