Sunday, July 21, 2002
More Music, More Community

Today's Memphis Commerical Appeal features this nicely done article by Pamela Perkins about the Stax Music Academy.
The academy is designed to combine state-of-the-art equipment with traditional music values, strict academic standards and character-building skills to revitalize the neighborhood through its youth.

"We believe that music helps build character through hard work, discipline and team effort," said Deanie Parker, Soulsville's president and executive director. "And so why not use music as a creative way to change the lives of thousands of children?

"The Stax Music Academy has ambitious plans designed to provide free instruments and music lessons to poor children primarily, but our goal is more than music."
This is an ambitious non-governmental community-based attempt at community development by focusing on young people.
Though Parker doesn't doubt the academy will produce a celebrity, its focus is human development.

"If we don't ever get a class act at the academy, that's OK," she said. Soulsville is concentrating on developing human beings "using music as the key."
If nothing else, click on the link to the article just to look at the gorgeous accompanying photos by Alan Spearman.

Addendum I: Soulsville, USA. Warning: Big ol' honkin' Flash intro.

Addendum II: Compare and contrast the Stax Music Academy with what's reported (by Tony Woodlief) here.