Black History Month started with the intent to educate children about the contributions and achievements of Black Americans. Historian Carter G. Woodson chose February because both Abraham Lincoln and Frederick Douglass had birthdays during the second week of the month. Music educators may want to view Nate Holder’s poem to reflect on ways to understand the myriad ways music education has prevented Black/African American participation. The video highlights ways to improve recognizing Black/African American contributions to music. His words might even be applied to all non-white music and musicians. You can start by removing “world” or “ethnic” from categories of music while also ensuring you are not appropriating African sounds without providing credit to or context of their meaning to the culture. Instead, consider sharing the music and the historical contributions of Black composers.
If you’re as committed to diverse voices and inclusive classrooms as GPG Music is, you may want to evaluate your music selections for appropriation vs appreciation. Here’s a good resource on the definitions.
GPG Music is the premiere source for award-winning music and design for inspirational marching band, captivating concert music, and powerful indoor percussion. We’ve been supplying K-12, college and independent groups for nearly two decades. The GPG team includes educators, designers and composers dedicated to providing reasonably priced custom-level compositions and visual design for all ability levels.GPG Music is dedicated to expanding the diverse voices in Performing Arts music. #InspireTheNextGeneration