Music Education Blog Carnival -April 2009 Edition

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Welcome to the 10th annual monthly edition of the Music Education Blog Carnival!  The Music Education Blog Carnival was created and is maintained by Dr. Joseph Pisano of and Joel of in order to promote the great articles and posts being written by Expert Music Education Bloggers across the Internet. 

The Music Education Blog Carnival is published on the 1st of every month and is a recognized member of the community of blogs as indexed by  All entries submitted to the Music Education Blog Carnival are examined to ensure that the content is valid, interesting, and related to our global conversation about Music Education. 

If you would like to be an upcoming Music Education Blog Carnival host or submit an entry for the next carnival please visit the Music Education Blog Carnival Home Page for more information. 


Presenting the March, 2009 Music Education Carnival of Blogs:

Photo Credit: Flickr- stuseeger/200787016/
Photo Credit: Flickr- stuseeger/200787016/

This month’s carnival is very exciting as there are a number of “new” bloggers that are presenting great articles and very interesting topics.  This is a very busy time of the year for all of us as many of us have just finished county, honors, district and region concerts and are rapidly preparing for the state concerts and conferences.  In addition, we are finishing up grading periods and preparing for the last round of our own concerts…any extra time we may have probably isn’t going to be spent writing ground-shaking blog entries!  That being said, this carnival may be “lean” but it is filled with “great stuff”!   Your ticket has been paid for and you’ve entered the fair grounds -now experience this month’s carnival:

Under the category of “Music Pedagogy and Tips”  Emilio Guarino starts the carnival and presents 10 Ways to Become a Better Improviser posted at Big Fiddlin’ Time.  This article features an honest and workable approach to becoming a better improviser and is applicable to anyone learning the art of improv. on any instrument. 

Natalie Wickham presents Key Signature-Scale Matchup Music Worksheets posted at Music Matters Blog.  The article is all about getting to know your “key signatures”.  Natalie has created a set of music worksheets that any teacher may use freely for their elementary classroom or for instruction purposes.  The set includes Major and Minor Sharp Keys and Major and Minor Flat Keys.

G. E. Marrs presents 3 Fundamentals to Being a Musician posted at Musicians Dojo.  G.E. writes about three questions all musicians  should ask themselves: Why do you play? What is your voice? Are you satisifed with your style?

Angelique Lee and Francine Kenney presents Yes, There is a Best Time of Day to Practice posted at Music Practice For Kids.  Is there a best time of day to practice?  Angelique and Francine write about how the best time to practice may very well depend on each individual student and parents can help their kids succeed in music by keying in on the right time for their children to practice.

Under the category of “Music History”, Dan presents Tchaikovsky – 1812 Overture posted at The Reviewist.  Dan paints an interesting picture with regard to the history of the 1812 Overture.  Although he admits that there may be some slight historical inaccuracies in the portrayal, the post is very informative and interesting.  There are multiple embedded sound clips that divide the overture up into smaller segments and each segment has a descriptive dialogue that describes what each section of music is aurally “painting”. 

Rachel Rambach presents Friday Fave: My Piano posted at Listen and Learn.  Rachel posts a touching story of how a common upright piano played by a toddler, becomes neglected…but is brought back from neglect years later for the purpose of being used to teach other students how to learn the piano.

The only Music Technology post comes from me, Joseph Pisano, and is titled Basic Audio 101: Audio Compression and Audio Compressors at  This is the first of a series of “semi-deep”, but easily understandable articles about how to better utilize music technology gear.   This article is about audio compressor basics and includes some generic settings that will work for different instruments in different settings.

Finally, under the category of “Music Advocacy and Inspiration” Andy Zweibel presents “The Conference Effect” posted at Andy Zweibel – Music Musings and Other Randoms….  Andy writes about the importance of going to conferences to get re-charged with regard to our profession and writes about how we can integreate this  “conference energy effect” into our daily lives and routines afterward.

The April 2009 carnival comes to a close with blog carnival vetern, Travis J. Weller who presents Music Education as a shaping force in culture posted at Composing Like Mad. Travis writes a referenced article that asks us to consider our role as music educators, the music our ensembles learn in traditional formats, and thoughts as to how we affect change in our schools and communities.

This concludes the April 2009 edition of the Music Eduction Blog Carnival.  I hope that you’ve enjoyed it and I encourage you to visit and comment about the posts you read from this carnival at each author’s site!


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Joseph M. Pisano, Ph.D. is an industry innovator, education clinician and lecturer, trumpeter and conductor, and the creator of many education websites. He is currently the Vice President of Innovation and Engagement at Keystone Ridge Designs, Inc. After twenty-three years as a professor and administrator at Grove City College, he made the move into industry in 2018.  As one of the youngest full professors in Grove City’s history, he served in various roles over his tenure including the Technical Director of the Pew Fine Arts Center, Assistant and Associate Chairs of Music and Music and Fine Arts, Director of Music and Fine Arts Technology, Director of Jazz Studies, Stage Manager, and he finished his tenure as the Director of Bands where he directed the college’s Symphonic Concert Band, Wind Ensemble, Marching Band, Pep Bands, and various small ensembles.

He been named a TI:ME Teacher of the Year, received the JEN Jazz Educator Award, the PA Citation of Excellence, and named a “member for life” of the PA Intercollegiate Bandmasters Association. He is a past Vice President of the Technology Institute for Music Educators, an associate member of the American Bandmasters Association,  a past President of the PA Intercollegiate Bandmasters Association, and a member of various education and music honoraries. He has written for numerous publications including DCI Magazine, Teaching Music Magazine, and was the Educational Editor for In-Tune Monthly Magazine for eight years; he has contributed hundreds of articles to various publications. He is an active conductor, trumpeter, clinician, and educator. Find out more at his website

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