583 Districts and 135 Schools Recognized as Best Communities for Music Education by NAMM Foundation and U. of Kansas

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Researchers Find that Districts and Schools Honored Have Common Traits Including Consistent Funding and Strong Community Support for Music

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Tue, 04/17/2018

“…students in quality music programs are consistently more proficient in other subjects and develop many ancillary life-long skills.” Kansas University Researcher and professor Christopher Johnson

CARLSBAD, Calif. (April 17, 2018) -- This week, 583 school districts and 135 schools across the nation are being recognized by The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Foundation as Best Communities for Music Education (BCME). In cooperation with researchers at The Music Research Institute at the University of Kansas, and based on survey results, NAMM each year selects school districts that receive recognition as being among the Best Communities for Music Education (BCME) and individual schools who receive the SupportMusic Merit Award (SMMA).

Now in its 19th year, the awards program recognizes the outstanding efforts of teachers, administrators, parents, students and community leaders who have made music education part of the curriculum. Designations are given to districts and schools that demonstrate an exceptionally high commitment and consistent access to music education.

This year, The NAMM Foundation and the University of Kansas are recognizing school districts in 41 states, along with individual schools in 35 states and the District of Columbia. Those honored include both schools and districts that have never been recognized before, as well those that have received recognition multiple years in a row.

“The schools and districts we recognize this year – both new and repeat honorees – represent a diverse group of urban, rural and suburban districts and demographics,” said Mary Luehrsen of The NAMM Foundation. “Along with a strong commitment to music education, there are two common traits that each program shares: consistent funding that anchors music education as part of the core curriculum and music programs that are located in communities where music education is viewed as a jewel of the school system. Parents, administrators and community members are proud of these local music programs and attend them regularly.”

Research studies continue to demonstrate the physical, cognitive and social benefits of music making. Students who are involved in a school-based music program are not only more likely to graduate high school and attend college; also, only a few years of musical training early in life improves how the brain processes sound, even later in life. Social benefits include conflict resolution, teamwork skills and learning how to give and receive constructive criticism.

“Music and the arts are a critical component of the core curriculum, and strong community support and involvement in the arts helps build an even stronger foundation for student success in those areas of study and beyond,” said KU researcher and professor Christopher Johnson. “Along with contributing to improved graduation rates and academic success, students in quality music programs are consistently more proficient in other subjects and develop many ancillary life-long skills. We have all noticed how the most involved music students are also exceptional critical thinkers and good listeners, able to persist through all kinds of adversities. The benefits of a strong music program extend far beyond the program itself, though the primary benefit will always be the unparalleled joys that good music brings to peoples’ lives.”

From coast to coast, schools recognized by The NAMM Foundation are engaging students and their communities through music. Whether these are students having a chance to perform with community choral, symphony and theater ensembles in Abingdon, Pennsylvania; reduced or low-cost private music lessons for needy students in Ann Arbor, Michigan; or English language learners in Grand Forks, North Dakota building new language usage skills through music education, schools and districts are creating a community of learners and showing what they have learned to the broader community.

The BCME program and the SupportMusic Merit Award evaluate schools and districts based on funding, staffing of highly qualified teachers, commitment to standards and access to music instruction.

To review the list of the 583 Best Communities in Music Education, please visit: https://www.nammfoundation.org/articles/2018districts

A list of the 135 schools receive SupportMusic Merit Awards can be found here: https://www.nammfoundation.org/articles/2018schools

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Pensado’s “Pro Audio Party” to Join the Make Music Experience at Summer NAMM

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Wed, 04/11/2018

Pensado’s Place, the hour-long weekly web series co-hosted by legendary mix engineer Dave Pensado (Beyoncé, Christina Aguilera, Kelly Clarkson, Mariah Carey, Elton John, Michael Jackson and others) and show creator Herb Trawick, will join the Make Music Experience (MME) at Summer NAMM on Saturday, June 30 inside Nashville’s Music City Center.

The famed co-hosts will bring the “Pro Audio Party” with their popular web show format to Summer NAMM and feature audio and recording luminaries as they discuss techniques, products and projects in an hour-long, live interview session. Set inside the show against a backdrop of leading pro audio brands, the session will dive into a series of hot topics in production today, and also look at sources of creative inspiration. Attendees will be able to witness and participate in the session, as well as hang with Herb and Dave in a special mentoring session, as part of the Make Music Experience on Saturday, June 30. The session starts at 1 p.m. inside Music City Center.

“Music City has incredible pro audio enthusiasts,” says Herb Trawick. “We’ll have special guests, enjoy some ‘edutainment’ as part of our session and then, get a chance to hang with friends and fans alike; I for one can’t wait.” Dave Pensado echoed that sentiment: “NAMM and Nashville are two of our favorite things, plus hot chicken of course!”

The Make Music Experience offers fans an all-day, all-access pass to demo the latest music and pro audio gear, meet with top manufacturers and explore career-enhancing education and networking opportunities with the music industry’s top insiders. Musicians, songwriters, music educators and students, as well as sound and studio professionals are invited to experience the members-only Summer NAMM, the annual mid-year gathering of the music products and pro audio industry, June 28-30 in Nashville. NAMM will open the doors to the trade-only event for MME’s full itinerary of professional workshops, opportunities to see and demo the latest in new gear from leading music brands, and a day of live performances and events connecting music-makers of all skill levels.

Tickets to the Make Music Experience are now available for $10 online at https://www.namm.org/summer/2018/make-music-experience and will be available at the door for $20 on Saturday, June 30. Hours are 10:00 – 5:00 p.m. A full line up of sessions, speakers, artist performances and more will be announced in the coming weeks.

Pensado’s Place is presented by Blackbird Academy, 1500 or Nothin’, Avid, Westlake Pro and Warm Audio. 

About Pensado’s Place
The hour-long weekly web series Pensado’s Place was created over five years ago. Co-hosted by legendary mix engineer Dave Pensado (Beyoncé, Christina Aguilera, Kelly Clarkson, Mariah Carey, Elton John, Michael Jackson and more) and show creator Herb Trawick, Pensado’s Place includes interviews with top music industry artists, engineers, producers, mixers, and record executives, as well as in-depth tutorials in production, engineering and mixing. Pensado’s Place has positioned itself as “the most influential show for audio engineers,” mixers and producers (Forbes magazine). Pensado’s Place is more than just a show, as it highlights the very best in the industry of music, gaming, sound identity on film, and audio equipment, with a presence in live events. As a leading educational resource, Pensado’s Place is helping build the next generation of audio greats. www.pensadosplace.tv

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Summer NAMM to Offer the Next Level in Retail Know-How with the Retail Training Summit

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Mon, 04/02/2018

At 2018 Summer NAMM, retail professionals of all areas of expertise are invited to take part in the new Retail Training Summit: a mini-conference that deep dives into the most relevant and critical areas for music retail success.

The Retail Training Summit marks an evolution of the popular Retail Boot Camp program as a way to offer specialized training for music retail professionals in a format designed to give hands-on, proven ideas, techniques and tools for retail success in a range of business areas. Retail professionals will be able to choose from six different sessions (one in the morning and one in the afternoon), covering a variety of hot-button issues and tools to stay competitive. In the morning, the program will offer social media and online marketing; financial management; and business growth and entrepreneurship; and in the afternoon, sales; website optimization; and succession planning. A complete list of sessions and descriptions is available below. In between the morning and afternoon sessions, a lunch will be provided.

The Retail Training Summit will be held on Wednesday, June 27 at Nashville's Music City Center before the opening of Summer NAMM, June 28-30. The Retail Training Summit is free and NAMM Members are encouraged to register early, as this summit is expected to be at capacity.

The Retail Training Summit Schedule

Morning (9 am–12 pm)

Social Media and Online Marketing – Jenn Herman, Digital Marketing Expert
Immerse yourself in the inner workings of social media and online marketing. Presented by Jenn Herman, leading Instagram blogger and social media authority, this training will give you an in-depth knowledge of what works in social media today and how to grow your music retail business online. You'll interact with real-world examples and dissect content to best understand the strategies that lead to success, whether it's making sense of algorithms or digging into analytics. Herman will cover the differences between the major social media platforms, measuring and interpreting results, time-management tactics, how to define success with social marketing, developing your brand voice and style, and steps to growing your audience—the right way.

Financial Management – Alan Friedman and Daniel Jobe of Friedman, Kannenberg & Co.
This hard-hitting financial training will cover the most critical components of running a music retail business. Presented by Alan Friedman, CPA, and Daniel Jobe of Friedman, Kannenberg & Co., the financial track is for store owners and any retail staff who want to learn about and tackle the financial challenges facing music retailers of all types and sizes. Friedman and Jobe will focus on proven best practices in the purchasing and management of music retail inventory. You'll also discover how to buy the right mix and quantity of musical products and gear. Find out how to boost the bottom line—and become more profitable.

Business Growth and Entrepreneurship – Rick Drumm, Traction Business Coaching
Want a proven method to grow your business? Looking to seize new opportunities and solve long-term issues, even those you may not be aware of? Then join music industry veteran Rick Drumm for an immersive training for owners, managers, entrepreneurs and business leaders. With a 40-year track record of growing companies in the music products industry, Drumm will walk you through the six critical components of business success. He'll show you how to create the right structure for your company and find the right people. This training will also reveal how to create accountability and execution in your organization, how to measure success and new ideas for creating a complete experience for your customers. Drumm is the president of Traction Business Coaching and COO of Caleb Chapman's Soundhouse Performance Studios.

Noon: Hosted lunch

Afternoon (1–4 pm)

Sales – Thomas Post, The Friedman Group
Customers now know more, expect more and have more choices. You have to give them a reason to come into your store—other than just the right products and prices. And in this high-impact sales training, presented by Thomas Post of The Friedman Group, you'll get a proven method to improve your customer experience and sales. Discover the secrets to relationship selling, why customer resistance exists and how to overcome it, and techniques for building trust and establishing value. This training comes from Harry Friedman's Gold Star Selling Course and is designed for everyone from owners to managers to first-time salespeople. Post has successfully trained professionals in industries ranging from music retail to furniture to sporting goods. Don't miss this opportunity to learn from the best!

Website and Google Checklist – Liz Jostes, Eli | Rose
You want to improve your website but don't know where to start. Or, maybe your website is working for you, but you want to take it to the next level—and get higher rankings on Google. If this sounds familiar, you'll want to be at this powerful education track, which is tailor-made for any music retailer looking to upgrade his or her online presence. Session host Liz Jostes, owner of Eli | Rose, has trained and consulted in industries ranging from retail to education to real estate. She'll cover the latest website and e-commerce best practices—including layout, design, functionality and mobile—drawing from successful examples both inside and outside of the industry. She'll also explain the basics of search engine optimization (SEO) and look at how to improve your SEO and Google ranking. Most of all, she'll cover this from the perspective of a small business with limited time and resources.

Succession Planning – Alan Friedman and Daniel Jobe, Friedman, Kannenberg & Co.
For the first time at Summer NAMM, longstanding financial experts Alan Friedman, CPA, and Daniel Jobe of Friedman, Kannenberg & Co. will do a deep dive into business succession. This hands-on training will cover the pros and cons of various store transition options, along with the effect each option has on cash, control and taxes. You'll also discover what does and doesn't add value to your store, vital tips for starting the succession-planning process and how to calculate the dollar amount of what your business is likely worth. Plus, you'll hear five real-life case studies. This track is designed for everyone from owners and their families to managers and potential successors. Register today!

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Make Music Day Returns on Thursday, June 21

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800 Cities in 120 Countries including the UK, China, Brazil, Nigeria, Australia, Mexico and Argentina to Celebrate Make Music Day 2018

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Wed, 03/28/2018

Make Music Day, the annual global celebration of music on the summer solstice, returns this year on Thursday, June 21 with more than 4,500 free outdoor concerts, music lessons, jam sessions and other exciting music-making events being held in over 70 U.S. cities in 31 states. New York City, Los Angeles, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Hartford, Madison, Miami, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Philadelphia, Salem (OR) and Nashville are among the numerous cities hosting major celebrations – as well as the entire states of Vermont and Connecticut – in what has become a worldwide phenomenon observed by hundreds of millions of people in 800 cities in 120 countries. Additionally, iconic buildings and landmarks in participating U.S. cities will turn orange to mark the all-day musical free-for-all, which brings together musicians of all ages, backgrounds and genres, amateur and professional alike, to make and enjoy music.

Completely different from a typical music festival, Make Music Day celebrates and promotes the natural music maker in all of us, regardless of ability. Reimagining their cities and towns as stages, every kind of musician – from bucket drummers and opera singers to hip-hop artists and marching bands – pours onto streets, parks, plazas, porches, rooftops, gardens and other public spaces to celebrate, create and share their music with friends, neighbors and strangers.

Launched in France in 1982 as the Fête de la Musique, Make Music Day is presented in the U.S. by The NAMM Foundation and coordinated by the nonprofit Make Music Alliance. In addition to major citywide celebrations, Make Music Day will also include smaller festivities in other communities nationwide.

Highlights of Make Music Day in the U.S. will include Street Studios in over 10 cities – including New York, Boston, Chattanooga, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Nashville, Philadelphia Portland (ME) and in a Reedsburg (WI) cow pasture – where DJs and producers bring their gear and engage passersby and musicians in the spontaneous, collaborative production of original music; Sousapaloozas in Chicago, Fullerton, Hartford, Minneapolis-St.Paul and Salem (OR) that bring together hundreds of brass and wind musicians to play the music of John Philip Sousa; and over 200 Mass Appeals that gather large groups of musicians to participate in impromptu performances using single instruments such as guitars, harmonicas, accordions, flutes, percussion, trombones, French horns, synthesizers, ukuleles, djembes and saxophones.

Additional Make Music Day highlights include:

  • Usher Themed Car Karaoke – In Chattanooga, people will bring their lovers and friends and unleash their inner Usher in a Green Commuter safely parked at a solar-powered charging station
  • From Nothing to Something: A BNA Spoon Jam – At the Nashville International Airport, travelers will be invited to participate in a mass spoon play-along event led by Lucius “Spoon Man” Talley and in partnership with the National Museum of African American Music, and Arts at the Airport. Travelers will be given a pair of spoons to keep.
  • Harlem to Broadway! – At the Richard Rodgers Amphitheater in Harlem’s Marcus Garvey Park, a concert celebrating music from the “Great White Way” will be held featuring selections from the songbooks of legendary composers and Harlem residents. The concert is presented in partnership with Jazzmobile and the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance.
  • Musical Intervention – Record Attempt at Most Vocal Solos in a Recording – In New Haven, people will try to break a record for most vocal solos in a song recording. Organizers are inviting at least 500 people to have their voices recorded.
  • Mount Rushmore Concerts – Make Music Black Hills | Rapid City will host music covering a range of styles from jazz to rock to brass to play-along at the Mount Rushmore National Memorial from 11 am to 6 pm
  • Water Music – At several waterfront locations in Boston, a new site-specific environmental work inspired by the Charles River and Handel’s famous piece, “Water Music,” will be performed. Listeners will each create their own experience by walking within and around the performers (brass players, percussionists and singers)
  • Orchestral Play-Along –Students and community musicians will have the unique opportunity to bring their instruments and collaborate with members of the Chicago Philharmonic in rehearsing and performing a free mixed program at Humboldt Park Boathouse
  • World’s Largest “M” – On the site of the largest “M” in the world, built out of limestone on a hillside in Platteville (WI), participants will play a variety of percussion instruments on each of the 266 steps leading to the top.
  • Young Composers Contest – In celebration of Make Music Day, music technology company MakeMusic and the American Composers Forum are hosting a composition contest for young composers aged 13-21. Judges will select one piece for wind band to be performed live in select cities on Make Music Day.

Global Make Music Day highlights include over 500 events in the U.K. with featured projects for song-making, brass bands and rural music-making, 3,000 events in more than 100 cities in China with an opening ceremony at the China Millennium Monument in Beijing, Australia’s first nationwide celebration, and 200-plus events in the Nigerian cities of Lagos, Abuja and Kaduna. Also, famous buildings and landmarks in participating cities worldwide will join their U.S. counterparts in shining orange in honor of Make Music Day.

All Make Music Day events are free and open to the public. Participants who wish to perform, or to host musical events, may register at MakeMusicDay.org. A full schedule of events will be posted on the website in early June.

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About Make Music Day

Held annually on June 21 to coincide with the summer solstice, Make Music Day is part of the international Fête de la Musique, taking place in more than 800 cities across 120 countries. The daylong, musical free-for-all celebrates music in all its forms, encouraging people to band together and play in free public concerts. This year, over 70 U.S. cities and the entire states of Vermont and Connecticut are organizing Make Music celebrations, encompassing thousands of music making opportunities nationwide. Make Music Day is presented by The NAMM Foundation and coordinated by the nonprofit Make Music Alliance. For more information, please visit www.makemusicday.org.

Participating U.S. Make Music Cities in 2018

Allen (TX), Asheville (NC), Austin, Black Hills | Rapid City (SD), Boise, Boston, Bridgeport, Buffalo, Burlington (VT), Canandaigua (NY), Cary (NC), Cedar Rapids (IA), Chattanooga, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbia (SC), Columbus (OH), Connecticut (statewide), Davis (CA), Denton (TX), Detroit, El Paso, Fairfield (CT), Fullerton, Hartford, Huntsville, Iowa City, Issaquah (WA), Liberty (MO), Long Beach (CA), Los Angeles, Madison, Mauldin (SC), Mentor (OH), Miami, Middletown (CT), Milwaukee, Minneapolis-St. Paul, Montclair (NJ), Muskogee (OK), Nashville, New Haven, New York, Niagara Falls (NY), Nicholasville (KY), Northeast CT (Willimantic), Northwest CT (Torrington), Ossining (NY), Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Platteville (WI), Portland (ME), Port Townsend (WA), Provo, Reedsburg (WI), Rochester (NY), Roselle Park (NJ), Salem (OR), San Antonio, San Diego, San Jose, Seattle, Somerville (NJ), Southeast CT (New London), St. Louis, Stamford (CT), Suwanee (GA), Tinley Park (IL), Tucson, Vermont (statewide), Washington (DC), Waterbury (CT), Worcester and Wyoming County (NY).

About The NAMM Foundation

The NAMM Foundation is a non-profit supported in part by the National Association of Music Merchants and its 10,300 members around the world. The NAMM Foundation works to advance active participation in music making across the lifespan by supporting scientific research, philanthropic giving and public service programs. For more information about The NAMM Foundation, please visit www.nammfoundation.org.

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