with Bear Erickson
Alum of TFS
Graduate of Los Angeles Music Academy
Local performing artist and recording studio owner
Date of Hire: 2016
My goals with all music classes at the Family School, are to cultivate students that understand music is a friend for life. Music is the language of the world. Students play, sing and move, as they learn about music from cultures around the globe. Playing in a group setting is what students are exposed to, every class. Finding who your are with music, and what sounds you love, is encouraged daily in class.
The four main concepts students will be learning and investigating with me are:
The ability to translate sounds is a lifelong journey. Learning to describe what you are hearing is a tool that can bring greater focus and joy in all other subjects of life. Someone who can listen is an asset in any situation. In class, we listen to vinyl and cover a large amount of decades and styles. This helps build a foundation for music appreciation, music history, and allows the students to be curious about what they love to hear. We learn that silence is your best friend when listening. When students leave with this knowledge, they walk into the world with a more acute sense of whats going on around them, and how they sound in the world.
We go on sonic adventures in class. Students will get to touch, hear and play over 25 different instruments with me. I will guide them in the pillars of music. I have created five pillars that define any music. Rhythm, Harmony, Melody, Heart & Soul. Playing in time and in tune together, is a great feeling students will experience here at Family School. Learning songwriting, arranging and playing other artists music is all here. We learn that know matter where humans are on this planet, they create they own music. This helps students break down barriers and borders, so they may find a true appreciation of cultures around the globe.
How can you play music without actually getting to play? In my classes, students embark on journeys into the unknown world of improvisation. This outlet brings joy to students every class. When you don't know whats happening next, you learn to let go. Once the fear of letting go washes away, students are left with pure, in the moment joy. When we play, we are in the judgement free zone. Kids can feel safe to explore and listen to what sounds they are creating.
We spend a healthy amount of our curriculum working on two large concerts. The Winter show and the Spring Show. The concerts give the Families of the students an opportunity to sing along and watch, as students perform music from different era’s and cultures. Being in front of a large crowd, builds confidence and helps students feel the joy of preparation, hard work and followthrough.
"I strive to have every single student find a connection and place, for music in their own life.”
~ Grey Bear Erickson