In compositional music therapy, the music therapist (MT) helps the client write songs, lyrics, or instrumental works that lead to a musical product, such as a written copy or recording of the song. The MT often handles the more technical parts of the process, and engages the client at an appropriate level (words, music). Goals of such work often include expressing thoughts and feelings, as well as developing decision-making skills.
This is a “hello song” composed for music therapy master’s program at Augsburg University. It’s dedicated to the folks living in the memory care program where my mom used to live, and where I have the privilege of playing once a week (pre-COVID). In the middle of the song, I name each resident and say one thing I love about them. I miss them all so much, and hope this video will give them a smile & let them know I’m still thinking about them.
By Bradley Carlin
There’s no doubt that climate change is having effects on temperatures and weather patterns globally, but here in Minnesota we’re seeing some pressing environmental concerns that are causing policymakers and local residents to seek immediate efforts to help address the side effects of global warming.
One such concern is the expansion of the Minnesota River. The river’s width has nearly doubled in some areas since the 1940’s, encroaching on and threatening personal property, roads, and ecosystems. Higher-than-average rainfalls are a large contributing factor to the river’s overflow, with last year being the wettest year on record for Minnesota. According to a 2017 study by Utah State University, the increase of rainfall and severe storms more generally has caused the river’s flow to double since the 1950’s. This added volume of water has raised concerns of both flooding and erosion along the river bank. For instance, in Mankato, Minnesota, the river has expanded outwards over 50 feet, bringing it just 8 feet away from the well the town uses for drinking water.
Policy makers and local residents are quickly seeking both temporary and long-term solutions to help relieve the river’s overflow, reduce erosion, and improve water quality.
It is hoped that these solutions, while currently only treating the symptoms of global warming, will spark more changes aimed at a more holistic approach to addressing climate change.
You can read a great write-up of some of the more pressing environmental concerns related to the Minnesota River in this recent article in the Minneapolis StarTribune.
Check out the latest Medium.com post with some cool events in Minneapolis this weekend. Here’s the highlights:
When: Sunday, February 9th from 12:00–2:30pm
Location: Columbia Manor | 3300 Central Ave. NE, Minneapolis, MN 55418
Event Website: https://www.esns.org/northeast-flannel-fest
Blue Man Group
When: February 5th-9th
Location: State Theatre | 805 Hennepin Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55402
Things to Know: Show times vary | Advanced ticket purchase required
Event Website: https://hennepintheatretrust.org/events/blue-man-group-broadway-tickets-minneapolis-mn-2020/
Family Skate and Bonfire Night
When: Friday, February 7th
Location: Bryant Square Park | 3101 Bryant Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55408
Things to Know: Advanced ticket purchase required
Event Website: https://www.active.com/minneapolis-mn/classes/family-skate-and-bonfire-night-february-7th-2020
Full Medium Article: Bradley Carlin on Medium
Winter Fest Craft Beer Tasting
Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild’s WinterFest is going on this Friday, January 17th from 7:00 – 10:00pm. The annual event brings over 100 Minnesota breweries under one roof for a night of craft beer tastings and food pairings. Your $80 admission ticket gets you unlimited beer tastings, unlimited small-plate food pairings, and a commemorative tasting glass. All proceeds go to benefit the Minnesota Craft Brewers Guild.
When: Friday, January 17 from 7:00 – 10:00pm
Location: Polaris Club | US Bank Stadium | 401 Chicago Ave., Minneapolis, MN 55415
Things to know: No guests under 21 admitted (Photo ID required). No pets.
Event Website: https://www.mncraftbrew.org/event/winterfest/
The Minnesota Guitar Society is hosting its annual Acoustic Guitarathon on Saturday, January 18th at 7:30pm. The concert will feature both up-and-coming and established artists from a variety of musical backgrounds.
When: Saturday, January 18 at 7:30pm
Location: Sundin Music Hall | 1531 Hewitt Ave, St. Paul, MN 55104
Spring Brook Nature Center’s Winterfest
If you’re looking for some outdoor adventures this weekend, look no further than the Spring Brook Nature Center’s Winterfest in suburban Fridley, Minnesota. Enjoy family-friendly adventures like snowshoeing, trail activities, a medallion hunt, and a visiting dog sled team. The event will last from 12:00 – 3:00pm on Saturday, January 18th.
When: Saturday, January 18 from 12:00 to 3:00pm
Location: Spring Brook Nature Center | 100 85th Ave, Fridley, MN 55432
The Minneapolis music scene is as diverse as it is ubiquitous. No matter your genre of preference, you’re destined to find a great local spot to enjoy some of your favorite artists, as well as discover new bands and artists just getting started in their careers.
Whether you’re a local or are just passing through, check out this latest Medium.com Post with a few legendary Minneapolis music venues to check out.
A 7-minute retrospective about the Doobie Brothers, a favorite 70’s band of mine that is still out there on the road touring and recording new material.
Establishing a local band in your hometown or city can be a surprisingly daunting task. This is especially true if you’re in a new city where you don’t have an established family, friend, or musician network. Regardless of where your band’s looking to get started, having the right approach combined with a little (OK, maybe a lot of) persistence can help you start booking more venues and playing more shows.
Here are a few simple tips to help you get started:
Don’t Play Too Often
The instinct for many bands just starting out is to play any show that they can get. While building your experience and exposure is a good thing, too much exposure can actually hinder your band’s growth. You want your audience to feel a sense of urgency when you put on a show, as if missing that night’s show means not being able to see your band for several more weeks. If you’re playing the same venue too often, you may end up making your band too accessible, which could actually hurt your attendance.
Playing in an over-sized, half empty room isn’t fun for either the audience or the band. When targeting venues to play, aim for those you are confident you can fill with friends, family, and fans. As your audience grows, you can begin booking larger venues.
This applies to all aspects of the experience: the type of music, the type of venue, and perhaps most crucially, the composition of the band itself. Bands that feature multiple lead vocalists and multiple featured soloists are inherently more interesting. On the venue side, while the lure of downtown venues and hip nightspots is strong, don’t summarily reject fundraiser and other private gigs; while their exposure they offer may be more limited, it’s still good for networking and an opportunity to see what material works best where.
Collaborate with Other Local Musicians and Bands
Networking is a huge part of the music industry at every level. Networking with venues, musicians, and other local residents is crucial to your band’s success. Try to attend other musicians’ shows and get to know the local players in your town or city. Once you’ve identified a few bands or musicians that you think might be a good fight, ask them if they’d like to collaborate or do a guest performance. This is a great way to give your own fans something different, as well as expose your band to a different following.
Brad Carlin live with the Normandale CC Jazz Ensemble, May 9, 2019, performing “Blues in the Closet” by Harry Babasin and Oscar Pettiford.
“Shame on the Moon”, by Bob Seger, performed by Homeward Bound during the Hearts and Hammers “Spring RAG” fundraiser at Surly Brewing Company in Minneapolis, MN on Friday, Apr 26, 2019.
Homeward Bound is Brad Carlin (guitar, piano and vocals), Josh Carlin (drums), Heather Succio (piano, mandolin and vocals), Susan Thompson (guitar and vocals), and Jim VerBout (bass guitar).
band’s website: homewardboundband.com