PBS Digital Studios, the same crew that brought all of those fantastic ICONS: REMIXED videos (Mister Rogers, Bob Ross, Julia Child, Reading Rainbow) to the web, have just launched a new webseries called BEAT MAKING LAB. In these new videos, a pair of music professionals and educators travel to locations such as Panama, Senegal, and Fiji to teach underserved students how to craft their own hip-hop and electronic music.
Beat Making Lab:
The series features music producer Stephen Levitin (also known as Apple Juice Kid), who co-teaches a beat making lab at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with Professor Pierce Freelon, who is also frontman for Durham’s jazz/hip-hop quartet The Beast. Together, they explore the connections between music, culture and community, and demonstrate music’s ability to serve as a universal language.
In the premiere episode Stephen and Pierce visit Yole!Africa, a small, vibrant, non-profit community center in Goma, a city in the Democratic Republic of Congo. They establish a recording studio, and work with local music students as well as acclaimed Congolese artist Flamme Kapaya. Together, they engage in digital beat-making, bridging the gap between American, international and regional music styles. The students and musicians produce music that is emotionally powerful and distinctly their own.
For more rock served up daily, “like” THE ROCK FATHER on Facebook.