Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Eagles of Death Metal

Eighty-nine people were killed in Paris at the Bataclan concert venue watching the California rock group Eagles of Death Metal.

In solidarity.

Mr. Kozak

Monday, November 16, 2015

Bill Frisell

Hello again!

When you arrange a song, you write the music for each instrument. Sometimes, that means writing music fro instruments that weren't part of the song originally.

Bill Frisell is an amazing guitar player and has a distinctive style you ca learn to listen for after getting to know a few of his songs. He arranges an album called The Sweetest Punch by Elvis Costello and Burt Bacharach.

"Almost as soon as they had finished writing, I received some piano scores and a demo tape with Elvis singing and Burt playing the piano. What a thrill and honor it was to hear these twelve beautiful tunes before anyone else on the planet. I was then left on my own to decide how to arrange them. This recording was done in NYC while Burt and Elvis were working in L.A. on Painted From Memory. None of us heard what the others were doing until we all finished. I can't imagine this ever happening again-truly once-in-a-lifetime experience."

Before you read about Bill Frisell on wikipedia, listen to a few of the songs of the album The Sweetest Punch and tell me how many musicians play in the jazz band.

Mr. Kozak

Friday, April 10, 2015

Major Generals Song Lyrics

Here are the lyrics for the Major General Song. I dare you to try to sing it in tempo.

I am the very model of a modern Major-General
I've information vegetable, animal, and mineral
I know the kings of England, and I quote the fights historical
From Marathon to Waterloo, in order categorical
I'm very well acquainted, too, with matters mathematical
I understand equations, both the simple and quadratical
About binomial theorem I'm teeming with a lot o' news
With many cheerful facts about the square of the hypotenuse
I'm very good at integral and differential calculus
I know the scientific names of beings animalcules
In short, in matters vegetable, animal, and mineral,
I am the very model of a modern Major-General 

Mr. Kozak

Who's Gonna Stand Up?

Long time no talk.

Because my school celebrated Earth Day today, I decided to have Grade 2 listen to the three versions of Neil Young's Who's Gonna Stand Up (and Save the Earth)? They enjoyed the acoustic version, were humbled by the orchestral version, and rocked out to the live version with Crazy Horse - so much so that we made a rock video with them individually playing air guitar, air drums, or singing.

I wasn't sure if they fully understood the message, since even most adults don't understand the severity of the issue or are in denial to it's causes.

As I was quietly finishing a rubric in my room, I heard a student sing the refrain from across the hall:

"Who's gonna stand up and save the world?"

This quiet little boy's voice singing the world's biggest question suddenly struck me hard.

It continues to ring in my mind...

All the best,
Mr. Kozak

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

12 Bar Blues thanks to Chuck Berry

First of all, I'm still around! Keep posted for more music education. Now then... Students,

Now you know a little about the 12 bar blues progression thanks to Chuck Berry and his legendary 1958 song "Johnny B. Goode", made famous (again) by the 1985 movie Back to the Future.

The opening guitar riff is taken note for note from the horn section of the song Ain't That Just Like a Woman from Louis Jordan (1946).

The song is so important in music in rock and roll history that it was put on the Voyager 1 Golden Record (by direction of the amazing Carl Sagan) and launched into space. (Voyager 1 is still traveling at 17 kilometers per second and is 19,571,030,000 kilometers from the Earth (yes, that's 19.5 billion).

Just remember I - IV - V - I for next class.

Mr. Kozak