New York Voices | In My Life
A new series for the classroom, coming August 2020! (Check back soon.)
Listening Lessons is a series of individual modules for guided listening in the classroom - designed to wake up the ears and inspire while learning about the structural elements of music at the same time! Useful for performance ensembles or soloists, Listening Lessons provide a fun activity for students to expand their understanding of music and awareness of performance artistry in the music they hear. Each activity is followed by multiple choice or fill in the blank quiz questions to strongly encourage deep, active listening.
Listening Lessons walk you through a step-by-step process of focused listening in three main categories:
- IMPRESSIONS: Designed to capture the listener's gut feeling after hearing a performance. After all, in the end the most important question is, 'Did I love it?'
- SETTING & ARRANGEMENT: Was it in a major or minor key? What was the song form? Intro material? Progression? Groove/tempo? Chord voicings? Instrumentation? Was there a tag ending?
- PERFORMANCE & ARTISTRY: Tone, Vibrato, Dynamics, Phrasing, Style, Articulation, Mood, Conversationalism, Story-telling quality, ... How did it make you feel?
To use in the Classroom or Workshop: the teacher or school makes a one-time purchase of the course after which they will be sent coupon codes allowing their students to register. Once each student is given their unique coupon code, they can register for the class at no cost. Additional info:
Module 1 features world-renown vocal group, New York Voices singing the well-known Beatles song, In My Life, arranged by Darmon Meader. This recording is featured on their latest CD, Reminiscing In Tempo.
Future Listening Lesson Modules are in the works, featuring a variety of artists, current and historic, including solo singers, vocal improvisers, horn players, rhythm sections, and other instrumental groups.
If you are a classroom teacher, or a music student or jazz fan who would like to sharpen your listening skills and learn about the nuts and bolts of music in a fun way - this class is for you!
Michele Weir is a veteran educator who has made significant contributions to the development of vocal jazz education around the globe. As an arranger/pianist/vocalist, she is known for her versatile skill set and ability to inspire. As one student put it, “Thank you again for being such an amazing mentor. You are truly the person I strive to be.”
Michele’s arrangements have been performed by notable vocal groups including New York Voices and the Swingle Singers, with orchestral works played by various symphonies including the Boston Pops. Michele served as Vocal Producer for the Manhattan Transfer’s 2009 CD release, The Chick Corea Songbook, also contributing two arrangements to the project. Her many arrangements for educational use are distributed widely through a number of different publishers including her own online company, the MichMusic Store.
Currently on faculty at University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Michele is an active teacher and clinician, with past workshops in over 20 countries and presentations for some of the world’s most prestigious music conferences including the World Choral Symposium, the Jazz Education Network Conferences, and the ACDA National Conference. She was honored to have been selected as Keynote Speaker for the first-ever International Jazz Voice Conference in Helsinki, 2015.
Michele’s educational book/CD sets, Vocal Improvisation (Advance Music), Jazz Singer's Handbook (Alfred Publishing), and Jazz Piano Handbook (Alfred Publishing) are widely-used internationally, and in 2015 she created the first-ever iOS app for scat singers, ScatAbility.
Michele is a former vocal member of the Grammy-nominated PM Singers (under the direction of Phil Mattson,) and her duo CD as a vocalist with jazz guitarist Bruce Forman is titled, The Sound of Music. Past credits as a performer include numerous headliner guest artist concerts for educational festivals as well as on-the-road work as pianist for backup singer Bobby Vinton and others. Michele also had the unique opportunity to serve as Music Supervisor for the DreamWorks film, Prince of Egypt, journeying through Europe and Asia to oversee the music production for the film's foreign language dubs.