By: Carlos Lopez
More than a year after the school received a $1 million grant from Levi’s and had pop star Alicia Keys sing at the school, the Music X Technology Program will have a chance to showcase its program at the Joseph Anzalone Theatre on Friday.
The students will be able to perform original songs, cover songs, and song projects in front of a live audience for the first time.
“We will also have special guest,” said Music X Technology adviser Mr. Joe Reilly. “We have DJ Will of Power 105 and CJ Fly of Pro Era who is going to perform some songs. It’s just a cool celebration of music.”
Mr. Reilly said he plans to hold this show annually. Like any other music class, the Music X Technology Program teaches students about the different aspects of music, typically focusing on the productions side of music.
“I look at music technology as using computers and technical tools to be able to create and produce original music,” said Mr. Reilly. “The benefit of using technology is that you could bridge wherever a person is as a musician with the final product. So someone with no musical experience or backgrounds can start creating music today while developing their musicality.”
The class is split into two courses: the introductory and the advance course. They both cover an array of topics.
“In the introductory class I try to equip students with all the different ways they can create and write music,” said Mr. Reilly. “It’s a project-based class. They learn how to do things like use loops and samples. Also, how to record instruments and vocals.”
Along with the class, students can use the lab for one band every day. As well as after school on Tuesday.
“I like the environment a lot. Everybody comes here and it’s a stress reliever,” said senior Jordan Lee. “Music is my passion. I saw my dad make music which was an influence on me.”
Mr. Reilly said he loves the ability of having students teaching one another.
“Even though they’re in the introductory class they’re able to teach other students,” he said. “So anytime I can, I have students teach and help each other because you need a lot of individualized attention when it comes to music production.”
Students who write and produce their own songs have a chance to have it posted on the school’s Facebook page. Senior Chai Smith is one of those students who have had their song posted.
“I didn’t feel much in the beginning,” said Smith. “Mr. Reilly really pushed me. He would say ‘I see something in you.’ I didn’t think I could do it, but now I’m really grateful.”
The Music X Technology Program has also set up a SoundCloud called: Music Technology at Edward R. Murrow High School. It features over 20 tracks from different students. Smith songs could be found on there.
Posting songs on these websites is a way of promoting the up and coming show, Music Tech Fest.