Opus | 2021 January

January 2021 OpusIN THIS ISSUE

News at CCM

Getting Started With GarageBand

Grateful. Proud. Happy.



Lecture open to the community!

Ragtime: Roots and Rhizomes.  Exploring Ragtime through Jazz, Classical and Humorous Music, Feb. 3, 2021

With humor and deep appreciation for Ragtime, CCM faculty member Peter Evans will explain how this musical genre was born and introduce us to its influential composers and performers.

Initially, Ragtime was most famously associated with Scott Joplin and other Black composers such as James Scott and Ernest Hogan. It went from the dance hall to the concert hall in a short period as a kind of 'serious' music, yet, at the same time, Ragtime also was used for comedic effect in popular culture. 

Musicians such as Jelly Roll Morton, Charles Ives, Louis Armstrong, Fletcher Henderson, Erik Satie, Igor Stravinsky, and many others claim or demonstrate Ragtime as an influence. However, these influences are often not so simple or even so flattering. 

While many history lectures focus on establishing a solitary center with simple answers, the 'rhizome' approach used in this lecture will demonstrate that connections, influences, and offshoots are more important, and even imperative, to an artistic viewpoint. 

Register in advance to receive the link to the lecture.

CCM faculty member Chieko Loy

Snap a selfie wearing your CCM mask! 

To help protect our students and their families, we provided them with great looking CCM masks this past fall. Now our masks have been seen around town and beyond.

To help spread happiness and give our community ideas of fun activities to do, we want to see your CCM mask selfies! CCM Student wearing our mask!

If you don’t already have a CCM mask and would like to show your CCM love, contact us and learn how you can get one. 

Whether you are supporting a local business, hanging out in your yard, or hiking like Abby at Mt. Tom, please take a snapshot and email it to us to share on Facebook.

Thank you for wearing your mask and staying safe. Your happiness and health are important to us.

Are you a CCM friend yet? 

Join us on Instagram and Facebook to be the first to learn CCM news and more! See what music videos we like, photos we post, practice tips and articles we suggest, and new music in the music world. Be sure to bookmark the CCM Blog, so you never miss a new post.


Getting Started With GarageBand


By Lydia Yoder

If you've used a Mac computer, iPhone, or iPad in the past 15 years, you've probably heard of GarageBand. It's Apple's audio design software that lets you record your tunes and utilize a huge library of pre-recorded sounds to produce music. Music production involves designing things like the form, instrumentation, and sound of a piece. Especially now, when most musical performances have been forced entirely virtual, learning how to produce music digitally is perhaps more practical than it's ever been!

With GarageBand's user-friendly interface, it's not too hard to throw some sounds on a track and hit play, but to make engaging quality compositions takes a bit more skill and knowledge. Think of GarageBand as a piano. Anyone can sit down at a piano and play a few notes, but it takes practice and an understanding of music composition and technique to produce an excellent piece.

Despite being designed with a beginner musician in mind, GarageBand is an incredibly powerful tool. Believe it or not, some of the biggest hits by Rihanna, Radiohead, and Kendrick Lamar have been produced to some degree in GarageBand. GarageBand is a door to seemingly endless possibilities, and it can be a bit overwhelming for students new to the software. So, where do you even begin?

Recording engineer, producer, and Concord Conservatory of Music instructor Daniel Fox says that the best way to get started with GarageBand is to dive right in and start playing around. However, he has found that, like most activities, music production can have some traps for beginners to fall into when they start. Fox says he tends to see two different ways in which new students can work themselves into a corner. Fox says, "Some students come in with solid technical skills—they're comfortable with the software and are hyper-focused on the technical aspects of GarageBand—but then they aren't sure where to go musically." The opposite can also happen, where accomplished performers who have a firm grasp of music and composition are overwhelmed with making the computer do what they want. Successful music production requires striking a balance between digital skills and musical innovation.

Another way Fox recommends beginners get a feel for GarageBand is by trying to replicate existing songs. Mimicry is the best form of flattery, right? By applying a critical ear to your favorite tunes, you practice identifying the more subtle components of a piece you might have never noticed before. And all the while, you get to explore the ins and outs of the GarageBand software with a clear goal in mind.

Learning to use GarageBand is well within your grasp, even if it's merely through some good old-fashioned trial and error. Of course, the best way to really improve is with a professional's guidance. Go check out Concord Conservatory of Music’s online group class, Track Builders! Taught by Daniel Fox, this completely virtual class is a terrific way for people of all skill levels to learn the tricks of the trade and study form, instrumentation, production of different genres, and more!


Grateful. Proud. Happy.

Thank you to our generous donors for welcoming us into 2021 with hope and the ability to provide high-quality music education for all!

Grateful. Together we faced the challenges of providing music education in 2020. But we succeeded, by creating a supportive and creative environment for the study of music, even when we’re remote.

Proud. CCM families and students persevered. Supported by incredible instructors, they continue to exchange ideas and experience the joys of making music.

Happy. CCM inspires people of all ages and backgrounds to make music and music-making a part of their lives.

Thank you for your support. 


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