DBRL Programs

Hope, Heroes and the Blues With T.J. Wheeler
Columbia Public Library, Children's Program Room

For certain, this presentation uses the music itself to tell most of its story—it’s no dry lecture. At heart, the program emphasizes that the blues, in origin, is an African-American music that essentially is a music of hope, that its original pioneers are nothing less than heroes and that the blues is the bedrock of American music. It is a celebration of and within itself. “We sing the blues, to lose our blues,” is truly the philosophy of the music as well as of T.J.’s Wheeler's programs. Audiences will learn to make a myriad of interdisciplinary connections with history, social studies, English and math as well as music. You'll also learn how to positively channel your own angst and blues into music, creative writing and other art forms. T.J. Wheeler is a treasure of American roots music, or better put, a living, one-man juke joint! He performs his gumbo of blues, jazz, ragtime and more on a wide variety of instruments, including the seven-string guitar, ukulele, tenor banjo, diddley bow, tap percussion, nitty-gritty vocals and kazoo! All ages.

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