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XP 4: How can we incorporate others’ experiences when creating music?

People who create music can incorporate perspectives beyond their own experience by interviewing and hosting conversations with community members related to the theme of the music.

Think About

  • Why would someone creating music want to incorporate other people’s perspectives?
  • How can people incorporate others’ experiences when creating music?

Get Started

  1. Think about some of the themes that we have addressed so far in this music learning playlist. 
  2. Identify and write down one example of each of the following:
    1. a social issue that you want to change or an aspect of your community you want to improve.
    2. a topic or story that people in your community or society have a  that you think should be told

Save your examples. You will need them later.

People who address concerns and improve communities often realize it is important to engage with others. 

One way to engage with others is to include people in the process of creating music. 

Crowdsourcing the content of a song from your community can make the lyrical and/or musical interpretations of their stories much more relatable and profound.

Example 1: Locusts – Invincible and Finale

1) Observe how the artists and community activists Invincible and Finale engaged in this process for their song and docu-music-video, Locusts

Locusts is a song where Invincible and Finale interviewed and held conversations with community members in Detroit about gentrification, displacement, and development. They wrote lyrics inspired by this and then incorporated some of the interviews into the song itself, as well as this docu-music-video.

  1. Describe how the interviews in Locusts connect to the lyrics and music,
  2. Explain how the interviews, lyrics, and music make you feel when watching and listening.

Example 2: The Collide – Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR) and Laurelyn Dossett

  1. Observe a description of the process composer and violinist DBR and singer-songwriter Laurelyn Dossett used to develop The Collide

The Collide is a musical project where Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR) and Laurelyn Dossett interviewed and held conversations with community members across North Carolina to express the stories and history of the state. They created music inspired by this and incorporated local musicians

  1. Describe how process of developing the Collide might have contributed to the end result
  2. Explain how this project and music make you feel.

Incorporating Others’ Perspectives Mini Project

  1. Think about the social issue and topic that you write down earlier
    1. Chose the one you would like to focus on for now
  2. Identify people you can reach who are most impacted by the issue or topic you want to address or tell a story/stories about
  3. Write out 5 – 10 questions you would ask these people to inform your music creation process
  4. Consider finding an adult who has experience interviewing people or storytelling to help you refine your questions

Share What you Learned

If you are using the LRNG platform:

  • Go back, find out what to submit, and complete the XP
  • If you want, you can then learn even more with the optional “Go Further!” activities below

If you are not using the LRNG platform:

  • Continue below and share with your teacher or organization:

Sharing What You Learned

  • Imagine you are going to create music that incorporates the perspectives of your community. 
    • Write a short post that includes what you came up with for the Including Others’ Perspectives Mini Project 
      • Give a short explanation of how could you take what you find out and use it to create music?

Move On

Return to the Connecting Music and Culture Music Learning Playlist