Music Drives Us stopped into Alex’s Place in Martha’s Vineyard to honor a very special person, Tony Lombardi, the Director of the Teen Center at the YMCA.
As a part of the Y’s mission, Alex’s Place is a free program for all Island teens, supported each year entirely through community donations and grants. The mission of Alex’s Place is to provide healthy, safe, and positive activities, and a supporting and welcoming environment for all Island teens to help them achieve their career and personal goals. Continued support from Music Drives Us will help the Y achieve our mission as it relates to teens and continue a program that is of great interest to our Island teens and connects to the musical tradition and roots of Martha’s Vineyard.
Alex’s Place was awarded a grant from Music Drives Us in 2016 for their Adrenaline Music Program (AMP) which mentored teens about the different aspects of music, including how to form bands, collaborate, and perform. It was at this grant site visit in 2016, that we had the pleasure of meeting Tony Lombardi. Tony was a fantastic leader and tireless advocate for the teens of Martha’s Vineyard. He radiated a special passion and love for music and wanted each teen to be afforded the opportunity to learn and grow in a safe space. Tony passed away in December of 2017 and Music Drives Us wanted to honor his memory by providing a donation in Tony’s honor to continue his indelible legacy. We will always remember Tony, and are proud to support our aligned mission of providing musical opportunities for all segments of society. Thank you Tony, and to the wonderful teens at Alex’s Place who performed for us during our visit yesterday!
Read more about our visit in the Vineyard Gazette and MV Times. Thank you to the wonderful team at Alex’s Place for hosting us!
“In honor of National Teacher Appreciation Day on Tuesday, May 8, the Boch Center is hosting a Music Teachers Who Inspire Contest powered by Music Drives Us. Apply here today!
Nominate a music, band or chorus teacher who inspires you!
We are excited to announce the recipients of the Music Drives Us ArtWeek Grants! Congratulations to the following organizations:
Airmen of Note Air Force Jazz Band:
Date: Monday, April 30, 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. (clinic with students); 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (concert)
Venue: Franklin High School Auditorium
Address: 218 Oak Street Franklin, MA 02038
The "Airmen of Note" is the internationally-acclaimed United States Air Force Jazz Band from Washington D.C. Band members will conduct an open workshop with Franklin High School music students and present a concert following the workshop.
Circle of Songs with Hugh Hanley:
Date: Saturday, April 28, 3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Venue: Marion Art Center
Address: 80 Pleasant Street Marion, MA 02738
A singalong/play along concert for young children and their families. Early childhood educator and musician Hugh Hanley will lead us in a program of songs, stories, finger plays and music activities that will keep children (and grownups too!) happily engaged.
Communities of Song Concert:
Date: Sunday, May 6, 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. (3:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. – discussion; 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. – concert; reception follows show)
Venue: Wesley United Methodist Church
Address: 114 Main Street Worcester, MA 01608
A 90 year-old Methodist church choir, Metro West’s Shir Joy Jewish Chorus, Wesley Children’s Choir, Barre’s Band of Voices Community Chorus, a Ghanaian church choir and a children’s church choir come together for the second annual Communities of Song Concert. Each group will sing music from its own distinct cultures and traditions and then join together with the other choirs for a grand finale which includes a new, original and audience-interactive piece premiered at this concert! Preceding the performance, join us at 3:00 p.m. for a discussion the about inspiration for this performance and more with concert organizer, director and composer Nan AK Gibbons.
Drumming Around the World
Date: Saturday, May 5, 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Venue: Benjamin Franklin Classical Charter Public School
Address: 201 Main Street Franklin, MA 02038
Through this hands-on musical experience, Drumming Around the World will focus on exploring different cultures and their musical styles through the art of drumming. Participants will learn elementary to intermediate rhythms by ear, participate in drum circles, practice improvisation skills, and learn a little of the history of hand drumming.
ELECTRIC YOUTH powered by Bully: The Adjective
Date: Thursday, May 3, 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.
Venue: Franklin School for the Performing Arts
Address: 38 Main Street Franklin, MA 02038
The international touring ensemble ELECTRIC YOUTH will debut, host, and facilitate a fun anti-bullying workshop for children. Partnering with Bully: The Adjective, ELECTRIC YOUTH will use music and conversation to create dialogue around positivity, inclusion and the importance of valuing relationships. Each participant will receive a certificate they can customize by adding their name and self-portrait, and a take-home kit to continue with the Friendship Challenge.
A Grand Night for Singing – with the Apollo Club
Date: Tuesday, May 1, 7:30 p.m.to 8:30 p.m.
Venue: Jamaica Pond Band Stand
Address: 507 Jamaicaway Jamaica Plain, MA 02130
This concert encourages you to sing, hum, dance, or sway in celebration of the human voice, with familiar songs from around the world, spirituals, love songs, and a even a medley from "My Fair Lady." Everyone from two to ninety-two is invited to join this concert at the Bandstand at Jamaica Pond to enjoy music – and to join in – as we celebrate the human voice and the pleasure of singing together.
Intermission Cafe Coffee House
Date: Saturday, April 28, 3:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Venue: Intermission Cafe
Address: 36 Main Street rear, Franklin MA 02038
Students from the Franklin School for the Performing Arts (FSPA) will present pop, rock, folk and contemporary musical theater songs in a coffee house format for the first time at Intermission Cafe. Don’t miss out on this engaging opportunity to hear from FSPA students as they guide audience members on an interactive journey in celebration of musical composers and works spanning the decades.
Sound of Music Sing Off: The Next Von Trapp Family
Date: Saturday, April 28, 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm
Venue: Baxter Riverfront Park at Assembly Row
Address: 331 Great River Road Amphitheater Somerville, MA 02145
Familes and friends are asked to submit a 3-minute video of any song through a Facebook link made public a month before the event. Entries will be reviewed and a select few will be invited to perform at Assembly Row on April 28th for a chance to win (1) grand prize which includes a 4 pack to see the Sound of Music and meet the cast after the show! The best part? The Sing Off program includes an audience sing-along!
Woods Hole Traditional Music Stroll
Date: Sunday, May 6, 2:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Venue: Woods Hole Community Hall
Address: 68 Water Street Woods Hole, MA 02543
Celebrate spring with live music throughout Woods Hole as ArtsFalmouth presents its fifth annual Woods Hole Trad Stroll with traditional music and dance at a dozen different venues. There will be Renaissance from the distant past and around the world, lively fiddle tunes, contemporary folk music, an open jam session, and a country dance in the evening. Highlights of the day include the Solstice Singers, who will teach the audience catches or rounds from the 16th to 19th centuries, a children’s movement song, and a musical skit, as well as providing information on musical genres and history.
Young or Old, Music Lifts You, Heart and Soul
Date: Friday, May 4th, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Venue: Common Street Spiritual Center
Address: 13 Common Street Natick, MA 01760
Golden Tones chorus (goldentones.org) and the Natick High School Advanced Choir will once again join forces to create a dynamic, interactive, inter-generational vocal music event, involving everyone in the room - that means YOU. We firmly subscribe to the African proverb, "If you can walk, you can dance; if you can talk, you can sing," and we're prepared to prove it!
We are looking forward to their awesome events!
On Wednesday, April 4, Music Drives Us made a visit to Norwood High School in our hometown of Norwood, MA! Norwood Public Schools Fine Arts Department was awarded a grant to enhance the band and orchestra programs throughout the public schools.
Norwood Public Schools has an inventory of school-owned instruments that are loaned to students at no cost as part of an effort to make quality music education accessible to all. However, they wrote to us that they were in need of some instruments. Music Drives Us provided a keyboard and amplifier, a concert snare drum, a field drum, concert bells, 10 plastic trombones, 2 violas, 4 cellos, and viola bows.
During our visit, the string and wind ensembles performed a number of songs for us. We were blown away by the talent of these young musicians! Keep up the good work!
On Tuesday March 6, Music Drives Us visited the Mary Lyon Pilot High School in Brighton, MA to witness the music club perform with their new instruments and equipment. The school wrote to Music Drives Us in need of instruments and equipment for their expanding music club. Music Drives Us provided their club with: electric guitars, bass guitars, amps, brand new cymbals and hardware, microphones, keyboards and a drum kit. Before the donation from Music Drives Us, the students were utilizing the staff’s personal gear for the past five years.
Nicknaming themselves the “Boch Stars”, the students showed MDU that the instruments and equipment are being put to good use and that they certainly know how to rock! We had such a great time attending the assembly. It was so inspiring to see the talents of the music club and the impact this grant had. Keep up the good work and rock on!
To view the entire album, we invite you to visit: https://mdu.smugmug.com/MDU/Mary-Lyons-School/n-qnh3Z3/
On Tuesday February 6, Music Drives Us presented Horizons for Homeless Children in Roxbury, MA a $10,000 grant for their Young Audiences of Massachusetts (YAMA) residency program. The program, Expanding Horizons Through Music, is a literacy-through-music residency in which artists from YAMA lead interactive music sessions for the children at Horizons for Homeless Children. YAMA is a non-profit with a mission to educate, inspire, and empower the youth of Massachusetts through the arts.
Expanding Horizons Through Music helps close the kindergarten preparedness gap for children who are homeless or live in extreme poverty in the Boston area. We are thrilled to be able to support this wonderful program, and help secure its presence at Horizons for Homeless Children!
Our friend Jackie Bruno of NBC Boston sat down with the legendary Joe Perry to discuss the importance of music education and his plans for 2018.
On December 16, Music Drives Us took on round two of an incredibly charitable weekend!
The Dropkick Murphys’ Christmas Party was at Plainridge Park Casino and it was a big hit! The party featured an excellent performance by the Dropkick Murphys, followed by a boxing fight in the downstairs racing room.
The much anticipated fight highlighted the talents of Mark DeLuca, who won the fight! He achieved the amazing record of 20-0 and won the WBA Super Welterweight North American title (NABA) and the IBA World Title. Niall Kennedy co-headlined the night of boxing and reached a record of 10-0 and won the IBA America title. Big congrats to Mark and Niall!
We would like to extend a huge thank you to the Dropkick Murphys for generously supporting Music Drives Us alongside their charity, the Claddagh Fund, with the proceeds of the night. Also a big thank you goes out to all who attended the party! We truly appreciate your support of our mission of keeping music in our schools.
On December 15, Music Drives Us was lucky enough to host An Evening with Joe Perry! The legendary Rock & Roll Hall of Famer performed a charity concert to benefit Music Drives Us right here in our hometown of Norwood, MA.
This fundraiser was a rare and intimate experience held in Ernie Boch Jr’s hangar in Norwood Airport. It was an incredible night filled with crowd favorites and some tunes to get everyone in the Christmas spirit. For those who were not able to make it: check out our Facebook page for the video we broadcasted live!
We would like to thank everyone who came out for this rockin’ event! All of the proceeds from these great events and fundraisers benefit Music Drives Us and our mission of keeping music in our local schools and communities!
We are proud to announce an upcoming holiday event that you won’t want to miss! On December 16th, Music Drives Us and the Claddagh Fund will be presenting the Dropkick Murphys and Murphys Boxing Christmas Party at Plainridge Park Casino. The Dropkick Murphys will be playing covers, crowd favorites, and classic holiday songs upstairs in the casino’s ballroom. The night will wrap up in the downstairs racing room with a boxing match. The night’s fight will feature Mark “Bazooka” DeLuca (19-0).
The party will be from 6pm-9pm, and the boxing is planned for 8pm-12am.
You can purchase tickets here.
Proceeds from the night will benefit Music Drives Us and the Claddagh Fund, the Dropkick Murphys’ charitable foundation.