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Every Body Music for Every Body With Jonathan Best

comMUSIKey logo. Text below reads: Music is the key to community. Images of people playing music and dancing on the letters.
Image description: comMUSIKey in large different colored letters with little people playing music and dancing on the letters. Text below reads: Music is the key to community.

“I have become hyper aware in the last few months of how much it hurts to participate in a system built from the ground up upon racism. Every little bit I participate in dismantling this system feels uplifting. Because using music to bring people together has been central to my adult life I jump at every opportunity to use it in this struggle.”
–Jonathan Best | | |
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Event Description

If you don’t consider yourself musical please humor me for two hours and pretend that you are completely musical and that there is no one more musical than you. Imagine that music is soooo much more than notes on a page, fingers moving quickly, theoretical understanding or anything else you might think makes up a musically gifted person. Imagine that there is a music inside the music. It’s the sound of people connecting, of people seeing each other more deeply than words can ever convey. This is a land where disagreement (dissonance) is just as beautiful as harmony (agreement), where mistakes (wrong notes) are allowed to become part of the musical landscape. 

If you are someone who considers themselves musical, I invite you to invite the child in you who wants to try new musical pathways to come in and be awkward. Look for ways to inspire people with your inner beginner. Be an ally for people who haven’t had the same encouragement as you.  

During this time we will explore many ways to musically engage with each other even though the built in delay of the internet doesn’t allow us to play together in the ways we are used to. We are lucky to be part of a month devoted to building strong allyships where safety for vulnerability is key. We won’t be using any technical terms that we will leave anyone out. We will use words such as form, freedom, lead, follow, support, yay, ooh, silence, space, move, groove and on and on.

Who Is This Event For?

This workshop is for anyone dedicated to ending racism. If there is a target audience it is people who don’t believe that they are musical.

Event Length

2 hours

Event Date and Time

Monday, September 28, 5-7 PM PT

Suggested Donation

$20-30; no one turned away for lack of funds

How to Register

Make sure to scroll down in the Eventbrite box below for donation options.

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Presenter Bio

Jonathan Best (me) has put music front and center of everything I do since childhood from playing on street corners and subway platforms and in storefront churches, traveling the south in a gospel bus to traveling the world with rockstars. I was put in jail for inciting a riot with music (where I got a glimpse into the bowels of that particular institute of racism).

In 2007 I enrolled in a four year Musician Leadership program at Music for People while at the same time making trips to Kenya to work with the Maasai people creating a media center and co-creating documentaries. What I learned from the Maasai people is that when music is interwoven into the very fabric of a community, the community is able to withstand debilitating drought and oppression.

These experiences inspired me to start a non-profit called comMUSIKey which runs workshops and gives lessons in developing community-centered music. This, in turn, led to the project which entailed bringing music and musical instruments to the US/Mexico border and to shelters and to churches housing asylum seekers.

We are forever looking for ways to use music to build bridges and take down walls between people and ideas.

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This and all Solidarity Healing September events are organized by Reclaim UGLY and our Non-Black Allies as fundraisers and heart raisers for Black Healing October. Black Healing October will offer 150 hours of free, sacred Healing Events for Black People facilitated by Black people.

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Donate today to support Black Healers, Black Healing,
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