Music Teachers in Paradise

This past week was a working week. No doubt. If you know me personally, you know that I run a small non-profit that hosts a free music camp in the Caribbean. It pays me nothing, consumes a large amount of personal time and finances, and leaves me with cold sweats and ulcers for several months leading up to the yearly pilgrimage. I take approximately 10 music teachers from all over the US to the islands to teach for a week. We work 10-12 hour days while we are there, and pull our shit together to produce a concert at the end of the week that is attended by several big-wigs from the Ministry-of-This-and-That for the island. During the camp this year, I actually lost 6 pounds. There was behind-the-scenes crying. A lot. When I tell people about this project, I always get the same reaction, “oh, but it’s really like vacation since your in the Caribbean.” Really??? When was the last time YOU lost weight on vacation? I’m not there doing the Limbo at night.

While it takes me away from the “Supermom” side of me for a week, it’s all worth it. Every second.

Aside from the high that I get from working with kids who wouldn’t be exposed to the kinds of musical activities we provide at the camp, one of the biggest thrills is getting to spend an entire week with music teachers. It can be super lonely to teach music in a traditional school setting. More than likely, you’re the only one – and if you do have another music teacher there, you mostly keep it an 8:30-3:00 kind of relationship.

Not here. We not only teacher together during the day, but we are all together at night as well. And hanging with musicians during downtime  at night — well — awesome. Really. This is why people start bands.

One of the most fun times I had musically happened on the last night we were there. Everyone was just relaxing and nursing some sunburn from our only free day. We pulled out all the guitars, horns, and various singing voices and started playing pop songs. With a plethora of iPads and mobile tablets, we pulled up chords and lyrics for anything under the sun. Eventually we just decided to hit “random” and play whatever came up.

And there it was — the most awesome title I have ever seen: Ice Ice Baby, Acoustic.

We actually had no idea there was an acoustic version — or even how it goes. Didn’t stop us. We made one up.

So now, I present to you the HELLAgoodTIME All-Star’s Ice Ice Baby Acoustic Jam. That’s right — I said Acoustic. Jam. Perfect? No. Fun? HELL YES. Word to your mother….

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