Sunrise

Greeting fellow music lovers. Welcome to my Shut Up and Make Music website. Ever since I picked up the saxophone in junior high school music has become one of my biggest passions.

As a kid growing up in the 70s and 80s in New York City I was never really into music at all, sure I would sing along to whatever song was popular on the radio at the time. Remember Dancing Queen by ABBA? I would just let the radio play the next song or just simply move on to whatever else was on my agenda, like watching my daily dose of Tom&Jerry; cartoons.

Then one day in junior high school music found me.

From the moment I picked up the saxophone the power of music slowly took over my world. I developed a real love of all kinds of music – rock, blues, jazz, metal, classical, oldies, and whatever else piqued my interest. Not only did I develop a real appreciation for music but I made a few friends along the way who shared the same passion for music. We would get together and jam out to our favorite tunes from The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, KISS, Van Halen, The Doors, Hendrix, Cream, Iron Maiden and bunch of other great bands. To this day if there is some piece of music that catches my ear I will stop and listen and maybe even try to figure out how to play it.

What I want to show everyone that music is a lifelong learning experience and it could change your life and you don’t have to be musical virtuoso if you want to start playing.

I believe it makes no difference whatever your background is, everyone should have at least one chance in their life to learn how to play an instrument.

 

How Music Found Me

In junior high school I laid my hands on this shiny golden alto saxophone. My family moved into a new neighborhood and enrolled me in a new school – in the middle of the school semester. I was the new kid in class and was assigned a buddy to guide me in my new school. When we got to music class my buddy introduced me to the music teacher who then decided for me the saxophone since it was the same instrument my buddy was playing.

So my musical journey had begun. Well sort of. Back in the third grade I first started taking piano lessons in school and we had this music teacher who was as cold as ice. I don’t think I ever saw her smile. I absolutely hated going to music class. It was hard even play a simple melody. I was totally lost and I don’t think the teacher really cared. By the time the semester ended I had completely forgotten all the lessons. That was pretty much the end of the musical road for me.

Fast forward a few years later and now I have to learn how to play this weird looking metallic instrument I had no clue what to do with. As the days went on my teacher taught us how to read notes on sheet music, finger positioning, breath control, scales, melodies, rhythm, genres of music and so on. Before you know it I was actually playing music!

Over the years, I picked up other instruments like guitar and bass, I haven’t quite mastered them and I still have a lot of learning to do. I started exploring other genres of music and was inspired by so many great musicians, singers, composers and even dancers. I attended many concerts and performances and I am always looking out for new songs and new ways to make music. I could even make music on my phone if I don’t have an instrument near me – yeah I have a few apps for that.

Today there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t have some kind of tunes playing in my house. Music stirs up all kinds of emotions and gets me through the harsh realities of life. As Jimi Hendrix said it best: “Music is my religion.”

 

Music Has the Power to Transform

Remember when you first heard Beethoven’s Ode To Joy or The Beetles Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and how you felt after listening. Yeah, it’s that kind of feeling. Whatever music you listened it just made you feel good and kind of had this trans formative effect on your body, mind and soul.

I want to show that when you listen to a song that you grew up listening to or hear something for the first time, when you first pick up that instrument or go see a concert that something magical happens. Music has this ability to take you to another world away from the everyday mundane world of daily life to whole another universe.

It doesn’t matter what music you play or what instrument you play or how good you are you have to experience the sheer power of what music can do for you.

Music can inspire, it can heal, it can be an outlet, it can be whatever you want it to be.

 

Let’s Rock!

What I want to show you is that music is more than just listening to your favorite tunes while driving to work and going to your workout routine or singing at the local karaoke bar. It’s much more than that.

Even if you ever tried and failed miserably in the past at piano, guitar, drums or whatever there are better ways to learn now. Maybe you have children and you want to get them started with music lessons but don’t know where to begin. You might be looking for a new set of drums or musical gear and not sure where to look. Or if you are in some musical rut and in need of some inspiration this website can hopefully point you in the right direction.

Most importantly no matter what you do in your musical endeavors always remember to just have fun!

If you ever need a hand or have any questions, feel free to leave them below and I will be more than happy to help you out.

Keep on rockin’,

Jackson

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