Devereux Cleo Wallace
Monday's class was a great exercise in trying something new. We brought the entire class up to the music room, which has a full set of musical instruments, where Dylan and Chad played guitar and base while Craig DeLeone backed them up on the drums. Here is the track that they created:
Yonnas Abraham, mc for arguably Denver's most accomplished hip-hop group, The Pirate Signal, was our guest speaker today! It was an honor to have him be a part of our class. The discussion followed a show and tell session by the students, and Yonnas was very impressed by what the students had accomplished up to this point in the program. The topic for the day was to be lyricism but after hearing the student's accomplishments, he moved the discussion from this to a more general survey of what it means to be an artist today. Yonnas was direct, insightful, encouraging, and passionate, and the students responded with enthusiasm. The discussion focused on the topics of marketing, artistry, success, and inspiration.
Yonnas then performed a rap, acapela, from his new album. It was a special moment in our program because it brought an element of realism, inspired by extensive performing experience, that only an artist such as Yonnas can. We encourage our students to express themselves in any way they choose, and often they do choose to record lyrics over the music they produce, but when Yonnas performed without a beat, it focused everyone of us in the room on to what he was saying. Nothing could have been more powerful or pertinent in expressing the value of what one might say.
While the students were transitioning from the classroom, they played their music for Yonnas for his feedback. It was a great day!