"Blues in All Flavors" Learning Activities
© Gaye Adegbalola
SONG #7: GRANDMA & GRANDPA'S HOUSE
FLAVOR: PIEDMONT BLUES
- Draw a family tree. Find photos to glue along with the drawings on the tree.
Here is how to make one:
- Ask a grandparent or any older person to tell you a story about some event when he or she was younger. Record the story using a tape recorder or a video recorder. Or ask him/her to teach you a song from when he or she was younger.
- Name 10 ways you can help Grandma or Grandpa around the house.
- Make a list of all the things your Grandma and/or Grandpa likes to do. Find words that rhyme for some of the items on the list. Use them to create a poem or card or song for the grandparent. For example, my Grandpa likes to cook and then we read a book or he took the phone off the hook or at TV we will look. Or maybe Grandma listens to the news and then she sings the blues or she bought a new pair of shoes or she has paid her dues or put medicine on my bruise. This can be fun to do, but sometimes, when it is difficult, use a rhyming dictionary (be sure to change "Find definition to Find rhyme"): http://www.rhymezone.com/r/rhyme.cgi
- There are 3 types of instruments:
1) percussion = instruments that you hit or strike to produce a sound
2) wind = instruments that you blow into to make a sound
3) string = instruments that have strings that you pluck, bow or strum to produce a sound.
This song has all three kinds of instruments. The spoons are hit to make a sound; the harmonica is blown into; and the guitar is plucked.
See if you can name 5 other instruments in each category.
- Beginners lesson for playing spoons:
(Note: I cheated by using "rhythm spoons" which are spoons that are attached at the handle with a space in between the two-- you don't have to worry with holding one spoon steady. Also, mine are wooden which make for a different sound.) If you learn to play the real spoons, you will always have an instrument handy to join in making music at any time.
- A better, longer lesson by David Holt with close-ups of the hands:
- Learn to play the harmonica. This is a lesson by Rebecca Wenger. She gives the lesson without saying a single word. She teaches rhythm, how to hold the harmonica, how to suck and blow, how to isolate holes, etc
(Note: my harmonica playing is not great, but adds a little "texture" to the song and. . . I enjoy it! For me, enjoyment is the main reason for making music. Also, I used a harmonica in the Key of C on this CD if you want to play along.)
PHIL WIGGINS IN THE STUDIO:
Gaye's favorite harmonica player
THE AMAZING SCOTTY BROTHERS PLAYING SPOONS:
SPECIAL VOCABULARY WORD: GENEALOGY
Genealogy is a record of or the study of one's family history or group.