Monthly Archives: April 2013
By Valerie Powell
“I really sing songs that move me. I’m not in the show business; I’m in the communications business. That’s what it’s about for me.” – Richie Havens
The music industry lost another legend this week with the death of Richie Havens on Monday, April 22. Havens was best known for his unique guitar style, soul filled folk rock, and pop and folk covers, such as the Beatles song “Here Comes the Sun” and The Who classic “Won’t Get Fooled Again.”
Havens actually started his career as a poet and a portrait artist at the Greenwich Village scene. Later on he picked up the guitar and spent some time with Bob Dylan and Jimi Hendrix. The major turning point in Havens’ career happened in 1969 with his famous three-hour opening set at the Woodstock Music and Art Fair. While Havens recorded 21 studio albums, he was at his best onstage.
Richie Havens also did another important opening: he was the opening Different Tempo act for the Strings Music Pavilion in 2008. Betse Grassby of Strings Music Festival says, “I was honored to present him the opening year of the Pavilion. His live performance was exceptional.” The opening weekend of the Pavilion was an exciting time at Strings, and we will remember Richie Havens’ performance fondly.
Steamboat Springs may be best known as Ski Town USA, but there’s more for youth to do than just Winter Sports Club. Music programs are gaining momentum in the schools and recently there have been more opportunities for students to get involved.
Music Opportunities in Northwest Colorado
On Monday, the Steamboat Springs High School choir performed at the Northwestern Vocal Large Group Festival at Moffat County High School. A total of seven high school choirs participated in the event from three counties in Northwest Colorado. The competition had two components: a performance of three prepared pieces and a sight reading portion, where the group had only five minutes to learn a new piece, without the help of the director. The choirs were judged on a five-point scale, with 1 being “superior” and 5 being “unprepared.” Steamboat rose to the top of the competition with an overall score of 2 being “excellent.” They also received a rating of 1 for the sight reading portion.
Next month, the wind and string players of Steamboat Springs and surrounding towns will have a chance to perform during the Strings School Days program. Professional violinist, composer and educator Daniel Bernard Roumain (DBR) will return for the final week of the program to perform with the groups during field trips for the schools and evening concerts for the community. There will be more than 10 workshops, field trips and concerts, and all of them are free and open to the public. If you’re interested in attending any of these performances, you can view the entire schedule here.
Benefits for Children in Music Programs
Children who play music benefit intellectually, socially and emotionally, according to the National Association of Music Merchants. Studies show that students who take music lessons have higher intelligence quotients and Critical Links: Learning in the Arts and Student Academic and Social Development finds that arts participation motivates students to stay in school. Playing music also assists students with forming bonds with peers and adults. In a study called Adolescents’ Expressed Meanings of Music In and Out of School students “described their music teachers as encouraging, motivating and acting as both role models and friends that can be trusted for listening and giving advice.” Students also connect better with schools that include music and show greater camaraderie, fewer fights and less racism, according to Arts With the Brain In Mind, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Music can be even more beneficial for students at rural schools, such as those in Northwest Colorado. Third Space: Why Learning Matters found that “arts programs helped schools in economically disadvantaged communities develop students’ critical-thinking and problem solving skills.” Children stand to gain many benefits from participating in music programs. More opportunities for our students to get involved in music both in and outside of school, mean that they have a better chance of taking away some of these important skills.
This week’s song of the week is from the Disney hit movie Toy Story. “You’ve Got a Friend in Me” is the perfect theme song for one of the most heartwarming movies about friendship. Toy Story was a milestone in the film industry as it was the first feature-length computer-animated film and the first film produced by Pixar. The movie was certainly a hit in my house, and I spent hours with my brother flying Buzz Lightyear around the family room while Woody chased after him.
Kathy Mattea and George Jones recorded a version of the song for the album The Best of Country Sing the Best of Disney. Kathy Mattea will play live in Steamboat Springs this summer at Strings Music Festival on Friday, July 26. Tickets are going fast, so be sure to get yours today! To listen to more Strings artists, subscribe to our Spotify playlist.
Countdown: 5 days until tickets go on sale!
Summer is right around the corner, and if you’re looking for things to do, don’t miss out on some of the best live music in Steamboat Springs at Strings Music Festival. Our lineup has received rave reviews, and we can’t wait for the musicians to arrive.
Lyle Lovett and his Large Band will complete the season on Sunday, August 18th at 8:00pm. His song “Cowboy Man” is this week’s song of the week. The song rose to the #10 spot on Billboard’s Hot Country Songs and showcases Lovett’s classic country, folk and swing sound.