Arts/Culture
8:24 am
Thu September 1, 2011

Kids make music about their lives & struggles

A program based out of Flint teaches kids the fundamentals of songwriting and music production. But the songs kids write are not your typical bubble-gum pop. The program is a professional music studio that travels to schools and community centers in Flint, Grand Rapids, and Kalamazoo. It's called Studio on the Go.

Kids use computers and keyboards to make music and beats and then they write lyrics about their lives, and finally record the songs. Kids are given a topic to write about, like "education," “making it” and "family." The idea is to steer away from stuff kids hear on the radio and to instead write their own songs. The content must be positive and no swearing is allowed.

The results are songs about their personal struggles along with heartfelt tributes. Some kids sing about what it’s like to have someone they love die or to have a family member in jail. Instructors say the kids learn a combination of technical skills along with life skills.