Keeping the Blues Alive / Blues News  / KTBA Donates Percussion Mallets to Middle School Music Program!

KTBA Donates Percussion Mallets to Middle School Music Program

School Name – Bessemer City Middle School

Teacher Name: Ms. Cline

BESSEMER CITY, NC – Thanks to your donations, KTBA donated 32 pairs of percussion mallets to the music students at Bessemer City Middle School!

Every percussion section is a treasure chest. From tambourines, to shakers, pitched instruments such as the xylophone, low end from bass drums – they all work together to being stability to the band. However, when pitched instruments are involved, players must choose which mallet produces the best attack for the musical moment. Up until this donation, the color palette for a Bessemer City Middle School percussion student was forcibly dark and cold. With only a few sad mallets to choose from, discouragement set in and painted a gloomy picture for their audience.

“Each student at our school has to struggle in some way to get through their day,” Ms. Cline explains. Ms. Cline teaches band at Bessemer City Middle.

“All students are provided free breakfast and lunch and many of them do not have the luxury of a stable home life. I have some kids that come to my classroom in clothes that don’t fit, without jackets, without backpacks, and without basic school supplies because they simply cannot afford it. Although they do not have these basic tools, each child still comes into my class with a desire to create something of their own. Much like us adults, my students want to make their mark on something whether that be in mechanics, medicine, art, engineering, or music. Each of them strive and work towards their own goals and it is my job to help facilitate that drive.”

Ms. Cline started a fundraiser for her school to raise the funds needed to purchase new percussion mallets. However, according to Ms. Cline, the impact of this donation reaches much deeper than the surface repertoire and instrumentation.

“Middle school is a place in students’ lives where they are exploring new and foreign things that they haven’t experienced before. They are branching out and trying new things through their classes and are being handed so many opportunities to learn exciting concepts.

These students are yearning for [hands-on] activities that allow them to play and create their own music. So often, our students complain about how school is boring because they have to sit all day but it shouldn’t always be that way.

Music should be a classroom where kids get to explore different sounds and styles in a way that they do not experience in their other courses.

With the proper materials, students can learn through aural and kinesthetic avenues – branching out their minds and their musical experiences. They need to be able to feel music in their palms and see it come to life. Mallets give students a way to feel the difference between loud and soft by how hard they strike, to see that a ‘G’ is lower than an ‘A’, and encourages the strengthening of motor skills as their brains develop.

They can experiment with improvisation activities on familiar songs and with different tempos but none of that is possible if they cannot hear what they are playing. Mallets are a necessity in the general music classroom and we are doing students a disservice if we cannot provide them with a way to experience music with their bodies as well as their minds.”

We couldn’t agree with Ms. Cline more.

Thanks to the generosity of Joe Bonamassa fans and music lovers like YOU, Keeping the Blues Alive Foundation was able to fund Ms. Cline’s music project. Dozens of new percussion mallets will fill up the percussion section and give students the hands-on learning experience that they deserve.

Ms. Cline expresses her gratitude:

Dear Keeping The Blues Alive Foundation, Inc.,

I wanted to express my great appreciation for your donations to this classroom. There is nothing more disappointing than handing students an instrument and them telling them that they have to use a pencil to try and play it. These mallets will give students the ability to really experience how instruments are supposed to sound and be played. We are in the process of composing short songs which will truly come to life when played with new mallets. I cannot wait to share pictures of the excitement and musicality that will come from these tools that you have provided for us! You have shown such generosity and support and it does not go unnoticed, thank you.

With gratitude,
Ms. Cline

Keeping the Blues Alive Foundation is a 501c3 organization that makes a donation to a school in need of music instruments, supplies, sheet music, and more every week! Your donation helps us to keep music in schools, while preserving blues heritage. Without your support, we would not be able to reach as many students around the country. We are grateful for your generosity.

To date, KTBA has reached over 60,000 students.

If you would like to help us to continue to grow, click here to make a donation! All donations are fully tax-deductible!

Thank you for keeping music education in schools!