“Pop Music Composition Starters” is eleven lesson plans that use the history of American popular music as a backbone to teach composition skills to your secondary music students.
These lessons are tried and true tools to get every student in your music class creating in a way they never thought they could do before. The best part is it’s not a complete curriculum – it can be picked apart and done in any order to enhance what you already have in place.
Students will learn how to write melodies and lyrics, use harmonic progressions, perform accompaniments on multiple instruments, record, and edit sound using popular styles from the past and the present.
Some lessons require computers and software while others simply require paper and pencil. Some lessons use instruments such as keyboard and guitar while others can be done without instruments at all. Use what you can, adapt what you can, and save the rest for when you can fit it in.
These lessons are the heart of the presentation I’ve written for the National Association for Music Education convention in Grapevine, Texas this November. Being from New York State, the trip to Dallas is going to be expensive. This book is a great opportunity to offer my curriculum for sale to raise some money to defray the cost of the trip and share these lessons with your students.
These lesson plans feature reproducible handouts and step-by-step instructions for each of the pop music compositions I will discuss at the conference. Here’s a full list:
- Folk Music Lyrics Composition
- Blues Melody and Lyrics Composition
- Blues Keyboard Melody Improvisation
- Rockabilly Guitar Accompaniment Composition
- Rhythm and Blues Keyboard Accompaniment Improvisation
- 50s Rock Guitar Accompaniment Composition
- 70s Bass Line Keyboard Improvisation
- Rap Introduction Composition
- 80s Drum Beat Improvisation
- Sampling Composition
- Remix Composition
If you’re not interested in purchasing the lesson plans, you can make a donation of any amount to my trip if you’d like. Thank you so much for your help and support.