“…totally uncharted territory.”

Posted on Updated on

Listening #introguitar
Listening

Most of this entry was cross-posted on my blog here

I wanted to take a few minutes and tip my hat to the vibrant community that has sprung up around our school’s Introduction to Guitar class. Having had students post their work regularly to a wiki site in past years, I wanted to incorporate some of the design lessons I learned in #Philosophy12 and create a site that could function as a hub of creation, collaboration, and community that would serve not only our school’s face-to-face guitar students, but also offer wayfinding musicians on the open web a place to play, learn, and offer their own expertise to one another.

Alan Levine nailed it with this description:

it is not a class that teaches guitar but one where you can learn guitar.

And while I think the course has always functioned this way as a ‘closed’ system (even though we have shared our exploits on Youtube#ds106radio, and other places), the energy and inspiration that our open online participants have so far brought to the class has increased the creative combustibility of the group by several orders of magnitude. There are folks in JapanOntarioAustraliaSingapore, and even Ontario-azona strumming along with #IntroGuitar lessons and assignments, sharing stories of their instruments, their struggles (and triumphs) of playing music, and making meaningful musical connections with the face-to-face students who meet daily in our school’s choir room through videos, blog comments, and listening to performances in class.

One such connection that has been working its way through the course community began as a poem shared by a student of Jabiz Raisdana, in Singapore.

Having made some trans-oceanic songs written with Jabiz over the years, I opened up a Google Document and began sanding the poems edges and syllables with some chords and a basic melody. I recorded this so that folks could follow up with what I had made out of Michelle’s orginal poem, and posted the works on Twitter and the #IntroGuitar blog.

Over the weekend, Nathan John Moes continued to work with the chords and Michelle’s lyrics and added this version of the song that has been stuck in my head since Sunday night.

Take a listen. Seriously, wow. (This is a link to Nathan’s track added to by Keri-Lee Beasley, back in Singapore.)

Which all would have been amazing, right? A poem gets posted late at night (I might be adding that piece to the narrative…) on a student blog in Singapore, and a week later it’s spawned a song that has been amended, added to, and recorded by a few teachers in British Columbia.

But this ball is still rolling, still bouncing.

Coming full circle, Jabiz spent this past Saturday morning recording a new incarnation of the song (version III now, if you were counting), and so did Colin Jagoe, in Ontario.

Of his work putting the song and the recording together, Colin said:

...this is totally uncharted territory for me.

Totally uncharted territory, for a guy who isn’t even getting a grade or credit for the course and – beyond that – has been playing guitar for more than ten years.

And yet still, the ball bounces, and rolls. This morning Leslie joined the party all the way from Lima, Peru, offering the fifth (!) incarnation of the poem accompanied by her ukelele.

But this is likely not the end of this particular story, with chapters, verses and tomes yet to be discovered.

Maybe by you?

Advertisements

3 thoughts on ““…totally uncharted territory.”

    […] advanced assignments include the Asynchronous Jam, and Fake ______ Plays Real ______. But remember: you can make up your own assignments and create […]

    […] a particular piece of open-serendipity documented in more length here, I took a poem written by one of Jabiz Raisdana’s students in Singapore and lent it some […]

    Remixing Assignments « Introduction to Guitar said:
    April 4, 2014 at 3:55 am

    […] seeing where it might take you. Taking inspiration from some of the global collaborations that have taken wing in #IntroGuitar so far, hopefully we can make something exciting happen while strengthening the bonds between our realtime […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s