The Music Department and the Letters Collegium sponsored a concert on Oct. 29 to celebrate how music has produced social change in recent history. 

Students and faculty from Eckerd’s new Rock Lab and Jazz Combos presented selections from jazz, rock, pop and other music genres. Assistant Professor of Music Brian Jones organized the event, introduced the performers and trained all the members of the Rock Lab.  

The collection of songs ranged across contemporary music history: “Can’t Buy Me Love” by the Beatles, “Alabama” by John Coltrane, “Rebel Rebel” by David Bowie, “Sunday Bloody Sunday” by U2, “This is a Rebel Song” by Sinéad O’Connor, “Police and Thieves” by Lee Scratch Perry and “C.R.E.A.M.” by the Wu Tang Clan.

Associate Professor and Director of Library Services Lisa Johnston was the speaker for the David Bowie section. During her speech, she introduced his song “Rebel Rebel” by explaining the impact David Bowie had on the LGBTQ community.

“This concert should continue on at Eckerd, because all of Eckerd is interested in human rights,” Johnston said

Pictures were displayed on the screen changing sporadically to accentuate the social impact these songs made. “Sunday Bloody Sunday” was played while photos of murals and graffiti in the city of Derry in Northern Ireland were shown in the background. “Alabama” was played with pictures of the 16th Street Baptist Church bombing in Birmingham, Al. displayed on-screen.

Lead singer of the Eckerd Community Band Caterina Nicolau tried to understand the social and historical significance of all the songs she sang, doing research to gain more insights on their meanings.

This was a long preparation process, and Nicolau said that practice was five to six hours, either starting around 11 a.m. or 12 p.m. and ending at 6 p.m. every Sunday. 

Nicolau said that she felt very motivated, and gave all the credit to Jones for his instruction and guidance.

“I felt very powerful,” Nicolau said. 

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