Teaching with the Olympic Games

I have been having a lot of fun incorporating the Winter Olympics into my English ESL classes. Part of the curriculum deals with Canadian culture and this seemed like a great opportunity to explore different areas of the country.

Research

I asked the class how they could find out about the Canadian athletes who are performing on the world stage right now. It was a great teaching moment about finding appropriate online sources.

I then pointed them to the Official Team Canada website and asked them to pick an athlete and click through to their profile page and complete this graphic organizer.

Athlete Graphic Organizer PDF

Blog Post

The next step was for them to create a blog post with the information they gathered in their research. They were to include the important information such as Name, hometown, sport, medals won, records set, and any interesting facts they discovered. Plus, they had to find a YouTube clip of them performing and embed that as well.

Team Name Assignment

Connie Wyatt Anderson wrote this amazing lesson plan entitled “Team Names: A Reflection of History” that ties in nicely to the first two activities I did with my class this unit. It requires students to research a Canadian city and then create a fictional sports team with a name and logo that reflect the history of the community.

My plan was to have each student research the community their Olympic athlete hailed from. However, some students picked the same athlete or same hometown. So I had write a list of cities in the board from which they could choose. I didn’t give them the option of doing our city or Toronto. I wanted them to do the research and not rely on what they already knew.

I like how the lesson goes through the history of the CFL in Ottawa. It is very detailed and includes the new team logo.

I then showed the students other team logos and discussed the artistic choices and importance of the names to the community. We looked at other fake logos and I created one as an example for a very small community in Ontario.

This was a great assignment that ties in nicely with what is happening in the world right now. It is definitely something I plan on doing again.

Teaching Tip Tuesday – inspiration, tips, and tricks from my classroom to yours.

Word is Bond Rap Radio Celebrates 300 Episodes

It has been a great journey and there is no end in sight. I’ve come a long way since the very first episode of Word is Bond Rap Radio back in March of 2012. It’s hard to believe that this week’s episode will be the 300th one for the show.

We are celebrating it in a big way at Radio Western tomorrow night. There will be live performances, trivia, mixsets, and of course, real hip-hop music and talk.

I am thankful for this platform and have taken full advantage of all of its opportunities. I have grown as a DJ and it is easy to see over the past six years of programs how far I have come. I have always felt comfortable as a host and doing interviews and documentary segments. And look forward to another 300 episodes.

Come celebrate with us tomorrow at the station or wherever you are!

WHAT: Word is Bond Rap Radio’s 300th Episode Celebration
WHEN: Monday February 19, 2018
TIME: 11:30 p.m. – 2:00 a.m.
WHERE: Radio Western. Room 250 UCC. Western University. London, ON. Canada
FACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/1462224777239799/

Detective Novels Meet the Master of Horror

Mr. Mercedes by Stephen King

I had no idea that this was a detective story when I picked it up from the library a few weeks back. I have enjoyed every single Stephen King story that I have ever read. He just has a way with words and storytelling. However, this one seemed to be a bit different right off the bat.

I almost stopped reading it. I wasn’t interested in reading a story about a serial killer who never got caught and then decides to taunt a retired detective. It’s a tried and tired trope. When I told my wife about my reservations, she said, “It’s Stephen King though, he probably will put a twist on it.”

She was right. This time, it is the detective who strings along the bad guy. The detective was at a really low point in his life at that start of the story. He didn’t have much to live for now that he wasn’t wearing his badge. The thought of finally solving this case and catching the Mercedes Killer rejuvenated him.

The Mercedes Killer is a man totally without conscience. He is the type of guy that is bland, forgettable, but always outwardly pleasant. He hides in plain sight and is easy to hate and fear.

One of the interesting things about the fictional world of this novel is that Stephen King books exist within it. The main character makes reference to a few of the author’s previous works including Christine and It.

Stephen King did a great job in what he calls “his first hard-boiled detective novel.” This is normally a genre I stay away from. But I just discovered that King has written two more books and this is now part of the Bill Hodges trilogy, I might just have to dip back into the detective novel genre.

My List of 2018 Reads – coming soon

 

Chasing Content – February 2009

Let’s take a moment to travel back in time and explore posts from nine years ago. It’s time for a bonus edition of Chasing Content. Let’s go!

Read all of the posts from February 2009, 

or just these highlights . . .

Who Watches TV on a TV anymore?

Nine years ago, it was still a novel idea to watch TV shows on something other than a TV. It seems to be common practice now. Although, television is still holding on and hasn’t gone extinct yet.

Everwood – Perfect Television

And still my all-time favourite TV show. It’s a shame that it isn’t on Netflix for everyone to enjoy. My wife and I just watched the show in its entirety. It was her first time watching it and my fifth or sixth. I am so glad that she loved it as much as I do.

Teaching Tip – Keep it at School

I started teaching again last year and I have been doing a lot of work at home. That is almost a necessity when you start teaching. However, everyone needs a home / work balance. As a teacher, it is sometimes hard to do that. That is why I recommend doing all of your school work at school so that when you are home, you can truly relax.

My Customized Batmobile

This was a lot of fun to build. I still have it too!

The Very First Teaching Tip Tuesday

I revived this series last year but didn’t keep it up as regularly as I had hoped. I plan to write many more tips this year. It’s a great way to share things that work in my classroom that will hopefully inspire you or save you time. This one is a personal favourite for classroom organization. And it is so simple!

Belly Sunday

I miss this band. I found that t-shirt and have it safely tucked away in my closet. I plan to break it out soon.

Thanks for Chasing Content with me!

I do this at the start of every month to relive the best posts from the year before. I have a missed a few months here and there but plan to catch up on them all. This trip down memory lane was a lot of fun. Thanks for being for being on the journey with me.

Almost Forgot Valentine’s Day (WIB Rap Radio)

I almost forgot about Valentine’s Day this year. I had a crate of records cued up to celebrate Black History Month and then five minutes before Word is Bond Rap Radio took to the air, I realized that I should switch gears. I could push that show off for two weeks and play romantic hip-hop instead.

So, the next two weeks are set. Our next show is Episode 300 and I hope you will celebrate with me. I am inviting you all to either tune in or come by the station to celebrate this milestone.

Press play and enjoy Episode 299, The Valentine’s Edition of WIB Rap Radio.

Evidence – Love is a Funny Thing
The Roots – You Got Me
Eric B & Rakim – Mahogany
Biz Markie – Just a Friend
Journalist 103 ft VStylez and Eternia – Where is the Love
Skyzoo – Love is Love
Atmosphere – I Love You like a Brother
Boog Brown & Focus – The Possibility of Her
A-Fos – Tryna Love
Brother Ali – Baby Don’t Go
Classified – Got Luv
DL Incognito ft D-Shade – Universal Love
Masta Ace – Bklyn Masala
51nine02 – Just Like Us
D-sisive – I Love a Girl
Tempomental ft Nick Easton – Ill Intentions
Dessa – 5 out of 6
Napoleon Da Legend – Slash
Solomon Childs (cuts by Tone Spliff)– Stacks
Nine – The Revenant
Buckshot and 9th Wonder – Ready (Brand New Day)
Onyz ft Skyzoo – Ima Fckin Rockstar
Q-Unique ft Wordsworth – Rhyme & Reason
Cayoz Da Emcee ft Pheonix Paglaicci – Fire & Ice
Derty Mac – Homeboy
MLNY ft OB1 and Aces – Classik
Nature – Take a Trip
Nas and the National Symphony Orchestra – Memory Lane

Celebrate #WIB300 with us next week

WHAT: Word is Bond Rap Radio’s 300th Episode Celebration
WHEN: Monday February 19, 2018
TIME: 11:30 p.m. – 2:00 a.m.
WHERE: Radio Western. Room 250 UCC. Western University. London, ON. Canada
FACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/1462224777239799/

Listen to Word is Bond Rap Radio

Interact with us online

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Twitter – The Word is Bond, Chase March
Instagram – The Word is Bond, Chase March
Follow Radio Western on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

If you liked this show make sure to check out one of our previous shows

Feeding Your Flame (Student Writing Activity)

Last week’s Will Smith video response activity was a success. I decided to try it again with another of his Instagram videos. This one has a few harsh phrases or words that might not be appropriate for your classroom (please watch it before you share it with your students)

Please write a 2-3 paragraph response to this video.

You Are The Company You Keep

Have you heard the phrase, “You are the company you keep?” What do you think it means? Are your friends just like you? Do you like the same things and think the same way as your one of your friends? Use examples from your own life and explain why this person is a good influence on you?

Who Fans Your Flames?

Who supports you when you are trying something new? Who is someone is your life who is always there to help you? How have them inspired you to become better at something? Use specific details and examples from your own life in your response.

Inspirational Video

Is there a video you have seen online that inspires you? Copy the embed code to your blog and write a response to it. Make sure to use specific details and examples from your own life to explain why this video is inspirational. What does it make you think of and why should other people watch it?

More Tips

Teaching Tip Tuesdays – a regular feature on this blog to share inspiration and ideas from my classroom to yours

We’ve got momentum now, thanks to Will Smith. Hopefully we will be back with another Tip next week. Stay tuned! I hope to make this series a weekly feature for the rest of the school year. Please forgive me if I miss a week here and there, life is extremely busy right now. Thank you!

It’s Your Birthday Mixtape

I made this mixtape as a birthday present for a thirteen-year-old who is really into modern hip-hop. He made a few requests of songs that I am not particularly fond of. Fortunately, he left me some room to add songs of my choice. I threw in some new stuff and dipped into the past, as is my usual style.

The birthday boy told me that he absolutely loves this mix. I thought I would share it with you here since it falls outside of my usual boom-bap style. Hopefully, you will love it just as much!

Enjoy!

Jux Cain kicking it on Word is Bond

Jux Cain paid a visit to Radio Western Monday night to kick it with me on Word is Bond Rap Radio. He brought some music to share, kicked a freestyle, and talked about his birthday concert going down Friday night.

The concert features some amazing talent, including the headliner Adam Bomb, one of Canada’s finest emcees. So, head on out to this show on London, Ontario, Canada and wish Jux a Happy Birthday while catching a dope show.

Original Sound Invented – Radio
Napoleon Da Legend – Constantly Armed
Cloud City Projects – Menace
Summer Sons – The Feeling
Fraction & Finsta – That Ain’t Me
Eh Vee – Get Ya Bars Up
Gary Rue – Phantomz
Jamo Gang – All Eyes On Us
Junia-T – LegoLegoLego
Paperchasers – Cake It
Big Sproxx and Adam Bomb – The Blindfold
Dre Specz – No Refunds
Big Sproxx and Adam Bomb – Lemme Tell ‘Em
Skyzoo – Heirlooms & Accessories
Jux Cain – Mastermind
E.Dot Famous – Rampage
JR Fillion and Jux Cain – That’s Life
Joe Stu – Day Job
Planet Asia ft Turbin – Shots at Your Highness
Apathy, Pharoahe Monch, Pete Rock – I Keep On
Crash Silverback and Max Muthaphukin’ Stax – 10 For Sale
Royce Da 5’9″, Joyner Lucas, Black Thought – Wrote My Way Out (Remix)
Jux Cain – Freestyle
JR Fillion – Reunite
J Downz, Jux Cain, Young Stitch – Violins

Go to the show

WHAT: Urban Legends Jux Cain Birthday Bash featuring The Legend Adam Bomb
WHEN: Friday February 9, 2018
WHERE: Old East Bar and Grill – 765 Dundas Street, London, ON.
EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/428843364199630/
TICKETS: $15
SHOW: 9:00 p.m.

Listen to Word is Bond Rap Radio

Interact with us online

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Follow Radio Western on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

If you liked this show make sure to check out one of our previous shows

Adventures in Record Collecting

Dust & Grooves: Adventures in Record Collecting by Eilon Paz

There is something beautiful about a record collection. This book captures that perfectly with amazing photographs. Every picture has a quotation that gives us an inside glimpse into the collection itself and the mind of the DJ, music lover, radio host, or musician. It’s vinyl porn with a purpose.

William “The Gaslamp Killer” Bensussen says, “Even after the apocalypse you could still get vegetable oil and run two tables and speakers. That’s what I hope to be doing at the end of the world – spinning all this wonderful music, dancing, and being in love.” 

I have no idea how that would work. I am sure there are ways to power a turntable with conventional activity. You could manually spin a record and it would still produce sound, so this is a very romantic idea.

Rich Medina suggests getting plastic sleeves to protect your collection. He admits that they are expensive but “totally worth it for preserving the cosmetic and sonic integrity of your stash.” He has damaged records and learned this lesson the hard way. He believes in protecting your records in as many ways as possible and closes with this thought, “the record you disrespect in storage will soon embarrass you in front of a dance floor.”

There is plenty of discussion in the book about classic samples including this one. Do you recognize this from rap songs?

I love everything about this book. I read it from cover to cover even though it begs for you to open it up randomly and discover something new. There are great interviews with Questlove, Giles Peterson, Four Tet, Joe Busard, and more.

Let’s close off with this thought, “Records are time capsules. They’re emotional, spiritual, energetically bound pieces of vinyl. They were cut with force and energy, not by a programmer.”

My List of 2018 Reads – a continually updated account of everything I read this year (coming soon)

Fault vs Responsibility (Student Response Activity)

I am posting this edition of Teaching Tip Tuesdays as an activity you can do with your students. I will be doing this today with my class. If you try it out, let me know how it works in the comments below.

Will Smith is an actor, rapper, and songwriter. This is one of his most popular songs.

He posted the following video to his Instagram last week.

He says, “The road to power is in taking responsibility. Your heart, your life, your happiness, is your responsibility and your responsibility alone.”

He closes off saying, “Taking responsibility is a recognition of the power that you seize when you stop blaming people.”

Please pick one of the topics below and write a 2-3 paragraph response.

Accepting Responsibility

What do you think of what he has to say in this video? Use examples from your own life or experience about a time when you accepted responsibility or a time that you didn’t. Would you do anything differently now?

Age and Responsibility

Write about the relationship between your age and level of responsibility. How do responsibilities differ for people your age verses those of adults or younger children? How has your sense of responsibility changed as you have gotten older? At what age should we become totally responsible and accountable for our actions?

Parents Don’t Understand

How did Will Smith’s character in the music video show responsibility? Do you think he should have acted differently in some of those scenarios? How does Will Smith use humour to tell this story and get you thinking? Have you had any similar experiences?

Acting Responsibly

Write at least five things you could say to yourself when you are tempted to act irresponsibly. Explain the meaning and significance of each.

Learning from Mistakes

Describe something you’ve done that was really irresponsible. How did you feel afterward? What did you learn from it?

More Tips

Teaching Tip Tuesdays – a regular feature on this blog to share inspiration and ideas from my classroom to yours

I haven’t been writing this series on a weekly basis for the past little while. I apologize about that. I have been extremely busy, but plan to get back into the routine now. At the every least, I will add a new post to this series monthly. So stay tuned. Thank you!

Jovan Landry on WIB Rap Radio

Jovan is the special guest for this week’s edition of Word is Bond Rap Radio, she talks about her latest album, “Growth”, the city of Chicago, rocking with a live band, and what she has planned for her next project. Plus I spins some great hip-hop music in this two hour show.

Word is Bond Rap Radio is on the road to its 300th episode. Mixcloud makes it possible to hear every single one. So, press play, enjoy the show, and if you like what you hear, click through to the profile page to check out past episodes.

Narotechs ft Raekwon – Medelin (Remix)
Masta Ace ft MF Doom – Think I Am (Dead Rabbits Remix)
K-Cap Dadon – Dream of a Million
DJ Format and Abdominal – Forged From Hardship
Erick Sermon, Method Man Mr. Cheeck, and Craig Mack – Come Thru
Jeru The Damaja ft O.C. – Spontaneous
Sim E & Adum 7 ft Rockness Monsta – Cry
Mad Hattr – Don’t Fence Me In
Jovan ft Mykele & Jaleel Amir – Fallin’ In Love
Jovan ft Ell Virtuoso – We Will Be Free
Jovan – Premium Rush
TapesOne2 – The World Today
Nas – No Idea’s Original
Evidence ft Slug & Catero – Powder Cocaine
Grand Analog ft Posdnoous – Mutations
Socrates – Father Time
Doberman – Couple of Beers
Dweller & Jonny Capicola – Dusty Vinyl
Sum-01 – Life and Times
Loop Holes – Rimlaig LAX
DOGG4OUSE – Be Yourself
SmooVth – Catastrophe
Just Poets – Out of Sight
Rel McCoy – Breathe Easy
Nas – One Love
Outkast – The Whole World

Listen to Word is Bond Rap Radio

Interact with us online

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Follow Radio Western on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

If you liked this show make sure to check out one of our previous shows

Come Sing With Me (Karaoke Fridays)

I am running karaoke at Jack-Os in downtown Woodstock every Friday night for the next five weeks (possibly longer).

So, come on out and sing a song with me. It’s a lot of fun and a great atmosphere.

We get started at 9:00 and go straight through to 1:00 a.m. We have a huge selection of songs in the computer and you are bound to find something that you like.

I hope to see you there!

WHAT: Karaoke Fridays
WHEN: Friday nights
WHERE: Jack-O’s Sports Bar. 509 Woodstock, ON.
DOORS: 9:00 p.m.
COST: Free

As the Records Spins (WIB Rap Radio)

Monday night’s at midnight, the records spin as I mix and blend underground hip-hop live on the radio.

Word is Bond Rap Radio is on the road to its 300th episode. You won’t want to miss a weekly episode.

Fortunately,  the podcasts make it possible never to miss a show. So, press play and enjoy!

Evidence – 10,000 Hours
Jeru The Damaja – Truth Be Told
Black Milk – Laugh Now Cry Later
Tribeca Grand – NY-PHI
Imperial ft Sareem Poems and Sojourn – Know the Call
Billy Woods ft Aesop Rock & Homeboy Sandman – Wonderful
Effiscienz ft Roc Marciano & Tha God Fahim – We The Best At It
Rock Abruham ft Crooked I, Blu, & Jason Rose – Rugged Music
6Bronx Zoo – The Cycle
Joey Bada$$ – King to a God
Sum-01 – Calling Me Names
Da Grassroots – Drama
PMD ft RJ Da Realest – How Many Times
The Roots – What They Do
Mos Def – Mathematics
Apathy – Alien Weaponry
MLNY – Conflict (Part One)
DJ Caesar ft Porta Rich, Hus Kingpin, & Eto – That Old Block
Flashius – Knucklehead
Big Bob ft Sadat X – The Truth
King Kold ft Freeway & Ghostface – Amanda
Meyhem Lauren – Forever Dignified
Luxe ft A-fos, JR Fillion, & Kehmak – Heavy
Def3 – So Far
Black Moon – Reality
The Notorious B.I.G. – Warning
Maestro Fresh Wes ft Ivana Santilli – Tomorrow Never Promised
Verbal Kent and Superior – Body Slamming Bruno Mars
D-sisive ft King Reign – Ray Charles (Looking for a Star)

Listen to Word is Bond Rap Radio

Interact with us online

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If you liked this show make sure to check out one of our previous shows

Students Working Together on Tests? (Brilliant!)

I subscribe to this ten-minute podcast series specifically meant for teachers.

In this episode, a teacher shared a brilliant idea.

After he gives his students a test, he has them retake it in groups. This lets them discuss the questions and the answers they originally provided. It gives them a new perspective on how to answer the questions and fills in any gaps they might have had the first time around.

This is such a great idea that I had to try it out in my own classroom. It worked.

Have you had any experience with this method? Is there anything different you do when it comes to test. Please leave a comment below letting us know.

Teaching Tip Tuesday – inspiration, tips, and lessons from my classroom to yours

Best of 2017 Mixset

2017 was a great year for Word is Bond Rap Radio.

We had plenty of in-depth interviews with legends and underground hip-hop heads.

We spun some amazing music week in and week out.

We counted down the Top 17 Albums of 2017.

And now we say goodbye in style with two hours of some of our favourite tracks from last year.

Skillz – 2017 Wrap Up
Maestro ft Skyzoo – Designated Driver
Jazz Spastiks – Midnight Mode
MC Eiht and DJ Premier – Got That
Alpha Faktion – System Shutdown
Superior ft Blu and Edo.G – Make the World Go Round
M-Dot ft Krumb Snatcha – Nomads
Word Burglar – If It Rhymes It’s Real
Gift of Gab, RA The Rugged Man, and A.F.R.O. – Freedom From Flowing
Defari – I’m Here
Evidence – Throw It All Away
Tone Chop and Frost Gamble ft Kool G Rap – Walk the Walk
King Magnetic ft Masta Ace, and Slug – Alone
Kool Krys ft Nilla – Knockout
Local-Mu12 ft Sadat X, Torae, and Foki – Never Had
Notion ft Cee – Something Inside
DJ Premier ft ASAP Ferg – Our Streets
Dres – Patience
Venom ft Rah Digga – Ruff and Tuff
Sareem Poems & Terem – Walk and Talk
Koss ft Torae – And You Don’t Stop
Chan Hays ft Homeboy Sandman, John Robinson, and Ghettosocks – The Shoes
Dan-e-o ft Thrust, Maestro, Moka Only, Big Kish, Eternia – League of Legends (Rock Out Remix)
Jovan – Premium Rush
Def3 – Fill Your Soul
Beneficience – Hostile Lifestyle
Da Dysfunkshunal Familee ft Greg Nice – She’s My
WarPorn Industries – Keep Your Distance
Wu-Tang Clan – People Say
Traffimatics ft Mad Hattr with DJ Chase March – Y’allreadyknow
Tempomental – Blow Up
Skillz – Murda Gram

Listen to Word is Bond Rap Radio

Interact with us online

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If you liked this show make sure to check out one of our previous shows

Cancer Benefit Hip-Hop Show (Saturday)

Come out an support a good cause on Saturday January 13th as some of London, Ontario’s best come together to raise some money to battle cancer. This one is for Danny Gable’s dad, who has been battling the horrible disease for 3 years and has been a warrior. Let’s show him that were all behind him in this battle and help put a dent in cancer.

Performances by

Mad Hattr, Tempomental, Traffimatics, Triip (of Labeled Minority), IG, Yung RL, Johnny Bars, Fate, and special guest G Premacy.

DJ Chase March on the 1s and 2s all night long.

I hope to see you there.

WHAT: F*&k Cancer 4
WHEN: Saturday January 13, 2018
WHERE: Gordy’s Brewhouse. 1631 Oxford St. E. London, ON.
DOORS: 9:00 p.m.
TICKETS: $10
FACEBOOK EVENT: https://www.facebook.com/events/1765931290116070/

2017 Highlights from WIB Rap Radio

2017 was a pretty good year for Word is Bond Rap Radio. 

I had the chance to interview some of my favourite hip-hop musicians. Legends that I have been listening to since the 1980s and 90s.

I also had some great conversations with underground heads, local talent, and up-and-comers.

So without further ado, here is the 2017 Highlights show with real hip-hop music and talk.

PMD ft Erick Sermon – Real is Gone
PMD ft Ace Brav & RJ da Realst– Gimme the Mic
Intelligenz – Round of Applause
Napoleon Da Legend – Black Privilege 2
O.C. – Good Man
Tanya Morgan – Ahead of You
Lessondary – Art of Saying No
Zo the Jerk and Frost Gamble ft Guilty Simpson – My Negus
Gensu Dean and Wise Intelligent – Ever So Lightly
Gensu Dean and Wise Intelligent – Amen
Nolan the Ninja ft Royce Da 5’9″ – Calisthenics
Substantial – The Sub Way
Tone Chop and Frost Gamble – Bing Stories
E-Turn and SPS ft Qwel – One Day At a Time
Hattr, Cee, Notion, & Exit Only – Eya

Listen to Word is Bond Rap Radio

Interact with us online

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If you liked this show make sure to check out one of our previous shows

AMD3O Electronic Music Semester and Unit Plan

AMD3O is a Grade 11 Electronic Music class that follows the Ontario Curriculum. I am teaching the class for the very first time this semester. I have designed a semester plan that covers six units; Analyzing and Understanding Song Structure, Music is Society, Composition and Performance, DJing, Careers in Music and Music-Related Fields, and Live Productions and Events.

This course utilizes technology to understand, create, and record music. Students will be exposed to engineering and recording and will gain exposure to music software, notation programs, sequencing, marketing, and issues of copyright. Students will develop knowledge and skills as they compose, produce, and create music projects using a variety of electronic music resources including samplers, keyboards, and computer software and applications. Projects may include original songs, remixes, mash-ups, film scoring, and deejaying. Students will also develop an awareness of related environmental and societal issues. They will explore college and university programs and career opportunities in various music and media fields. The final project will involve the class producing and hosting a concert to showcase their musical compositions and live performances.

I haven’t been able to find much in the way of resources for this focus class online. So I plan to share mine so teachers who wish to launch this program can have a starting point and resources from which to build their own programs.

AMD30 Semester and Unit Plans – PDF or MS Word document

Teaching Tip Tuesday – over 200 great tips, tricks, and resources

To Funk and Die in LA (Book Review)

To Funk and Die in LA: A D Hunter Mystery by Nelson George

I am not a big fan of the mysteries. In fact, this is the first novel in the genre that I have read in a really long time. I decided to give the book a chance when I was given the opportunity to receive a review copy. After all, Nelson George has written books on hip-hop and wrote the introduction for another book reviewed not too long ago, What is Hip-Hop?

The story revolves around the death of the main character’s grandfather, Big Danny. There are a lot of questions to be had around his death. Why would someone shoot an old man? He was the owner of a grocery store and did a lot for the community.

D Hunter goes to Los Angeles to pay his respects to the man he was named after and starts to uncover all sorts of things about his grandfather. In a side-story, a reclusive musician attends the funeral and a YouTube video sparks interest in a possible career revival of Dr. Funk.

Like I said, I am not a fan of this genre, but I do like a story that has hip-hop sensibilities. Dr. Funk’s journey is pretty cool and might have been an even better story without the main narrative being a part of it at all. He seems like a George Clinton / James Brown kind of figure who is larger than life and really respected but who completely disappeared years and years ago.

This is the fourth novel in the series but you don’t have to read the other ones to follow along with the story. It is a stand-alone that works well, for the most part.

My List of 2017 Reads (list now complete)

Word is Bond’s Top 17 of 2017

We countdown the Top 17 Albums of 2017 in this edition of Word is Bond Rap Radio. We highlight two tracks for each album and look back at the year that was.

What were your favourite albums? Do you agree with this list? Let us know if we slept on anything.

Brother Ali – Own Light
Brother Ali – Can’t Take That Away
Chan Hays ft Supastition, Ambition, and One Be Lo – Never Knew
Chan Hays ft Ghettosocks, Guilty Simpson, Ras Kass, and Tachichi – Gotta Love It
Primal Winds – On the Grind
Primal Winds – Concrete Jungle
The Shield Enforcers ft Casual – Hold Me
The Shield Enforcers – Prove It
Career Crooks – Diamond Cutter Sutra
Career Crooks ft DJ Manipulator – Corrupt Novelist
Hex One – Leave It All Behind
Hex One ft Skyzoo – Peep the Steez
Es ft Gov’nah – I Can’t Relate
Es – Growth
Apathy and O.C. – The Broadcast
Apathy and O.C. – Globetrotters
Gensu Dean and Wise Intelligent – G.O.D.
Gensu Dean and Wise Intelligent – Black Fear
Dan-e-o ft Mathematik and Deuce Deuce – Rap Essentials
Dan-e-o ft Fraction and Cable – 20 Years Later
Verbal Kent and Superior – As Far As A Fair Fight
Verbal Kent and Superior – For the Love
PMD ft Erick Sermon – The Real is Gone
PMD ft RJ Da Realist, Nocturnal, and Agallah – You Know Who Da Best
LS Camp ft Aria, Lyric, and Rockwiella – Out of Control
LS Camp ft Masta Ace – Too Black
DJ Format and Abdominal – Behind the Scenes
DJ Format and Abdominal – Still Hungry
Amerigo Gazaway – Sugar By The Pound
Amerigo Gazaway – I Was Made to Love Her
Blu and Exile ft Aloe Blacc – Things We Say
Blu and Exile ft Lyric Jones – Constellations
Koss ft Ruste Juxx – How I Get Down
Koss ft Keith Murray – This is Now

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