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LiveConnections has once again proven how important it is to showcase the musical talent of Philadelphia’s youth, and to contribute to the musical education of students. The nonprofit teamed up with Henry H. Houston School in Mount Airy to produce a full album entitled A Day In My Life. In a year long residency program led by Andrew Lipke and other musicians, students participated in weekly workshops focused on poetry, songwriting, and music composition. The core group of students from grades 4-8 who worked on the project are known as “Lyrical Productions.” They took trips to various locations for inspiration, including days spent at the National Constitution Center and World Cafe Live, as heard on “One Life Taken, One Life Saved” and “Dance Like No One’s Watching,” respectively.

Other songs, Ladonna Edwards of LiveConnections says, draw from “the energy of the Houston School hallways to concerns about violence in our city; from stories of our families to imaginings of fantastical journeys; from questions for our future selves to images of our current neighborhoods.” One track, “Similarities,” was even a collaboration between another city school, Andrew Jackson Elementary. No matter which track you examine on the collection of A Day In My Life, one thing is apparent: authentic songwriting has no age limitations. These kids spent an entire year crafting songs, and their hard work shows.

While all the songs feature student performances, there were guest appearances by local artists including: David Uosikkinen of The Hooters; Alex Shaw, LiveConnections teaching artist and leader of Alô Brasil; and a cappella group Brotherly Love. Lead teaching artist Lipke, a sought-after artist whose recent projects include “The Plague: An Oratorio” with Choral Arts Philadelphia and curating the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia’s acclaimed 2015-16 “Intersect” concert series, has collaborated with LiveConnections since 2010.

Listen to A Day In My Life Below, and head to its page at LiveConnections to read lyrics and meet the students of Lyrical Productions.

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