Sunday, April 20, 2008

Technology & Turtles — "Happy Together"

Hello sports fans! (I’ve always wanted to say that…) This second edition of the infamous blog will be a trip (my trip) to the National Education Technology Conference last Otober in Nashville, Tennessee. It combined two of my interests — education and rock ‘n’ roll music.

Our world of technology is on the freeway with no stop lights, speed bumps or ramps. Education and technology must be taught together to a group of young kids that have a different learning style. It’s our duty to elevate their skills for 21st Century living. We must provide online training in a safe environment utilizing online resources.

As parents, grandparents and community members, we must have a commitment to understand and utilize technology in a positive way. Upon meeting other school board members from all across our nation in big, small, rural and urban districts, I know the technology gap is large in some areas. These kids will have to compete with each other and other people in a worldwide economy. I hope we do these kids right — I pray we educate, encourage and enlighten them.

On a personal note, part of the technology we observed and toured was Recording Industry Technology. Belmont University has the “premier” school and facilities for this training. Their basketball team made the NCAA basketball tourney for the first time this year, with Vince Gill (our native Oklahoman) rooting them on to defeat (sad, but true).

After touring the new technology, we were taken to the legendary Studio B recording studio, home of over 95 Number One hits – where Elvis, Jim Reeves and Ray Charles cut their timeless songs. The old equipment and its placement within the room captured each part because they played and sang at the same time — no mixing or putting together parts later, as they do now.

Our guide looked familiar. I turned to one of my tour-mates and declared, “That’s the lead singer of The Turtles!” He replied, “No, that wouldn’t be him.” But it was indeed Mark Volman, the lead singer of The Turtles. He shared his story of going back to college to get a degree at 50. He got to speak at his graduation.

Mark Volman and Glen

Now The Turtles play a few gigs each year, but Mark is a teacher at Belmont. He shares how he signed away the rights to his songs and even the rights to his own name. He teaches the business side of the music business. (Perhaps he cautions others not to sign away their rights lightly!)

So long until next time…

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