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IN THE PRESS

Black Artists in Music

School of Rock Updates Curriculum to Feature More Music Created by Black Artists

HONORING MUSICIANS THAT HAVE SHAPED ROCK AND ROLL

School of Rock, the leader in performance-based music education, is enhancing its proprietary curriculum to feature more music created by Black artists. The goal is to further educate students on the Black community’s history and central contributions to the development of Rock and Roll.

To start, School of Rock has added new feature shows to its performance-based curriculum.  Each of these programs encompass 20-25 songs from Black artists. As part of the curriculum, students will learn to perform these songs and discover important lessons about the complex experience of marginalized communities. New shows include “Roots of the British Invasion,” “The Music of Memphis,” and “The Music of New Orleans.”

“We teach musical proficiency through rock because contemporary songs offer an effective toolkit, particularly in group performance. Just as importantly, popular music opens a door to history. We have an obligation to honor those Black artists without whom there would be no Rock and Roll, and by extension no School of Rock,” said Rob Price, CEO of School of Rock.

Additionally, utilizing the collective knowledge of the talented instructors across the School of Rock system, the company has published on its website a series of articles and interactive content on the historical contribution of Black artists to Rock and Roll. Early Rock artists featured include Etta James, Ray Charles, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe, in addition to more recent innovators like Prince, Tracy Chapman, and Gary Clary, Jr. 

“This project has been energizing, and it inspires us to better understand and teach the stories of other groups’ contributions to the art form,” continues Price. “We also hope that by better understanding our musical past, we can contribute to a more harmonious future.”

For more information, visit https://www.schoolofrock.com/celebrating-black-artists