Assembly Music

02 January 2018

Each week we listen to different music in assemblies and we learn a little about each piece - the music itself and the musician. Below you can read about the most recent music we have been listening to.


Week 1 (Determination) - Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu - an Aboriginal musician from Australia who was born blind but found his love of music when he was four years old. His family had very little money and could not afford to get the help he needed to learn. Despite his blindness he was determined to become a musician and taught himself to play the accordion with no help - practising every day. Next he learned the piano and then the guitar and drums. He shared his music both in Australia and around the world.

Video of Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu playing his own music

Video of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee concert in 2012 where Gurrumul contributed to the anthem "Sing" (skip to 5 minutes to see Gurrumul)

Week 2 (Aspiration) -  Israel "IZ" Kamakawiwo - Somewhere over the rainbow. This song has become an anthem for people all over the world who hope for a better and safer life. The words in the song remind us that dreams can be achieved. The singer in this song is from the tropical island of Hawaii. He is playing the ukulele, which is the national instrument of Hawaii. The singer’s music and his high aspirations of himself and others helped to get Hawaii noticed and create a better life and rights for other Hawaiians.

Video of Israel "IZ" Kamakiwiwo singing Somewhere over the rainbow.

Week 3 (Courage) 

Week 4 (Communication) African tribes value the importance of communication with others so much that they use drums to communicate with other tribes to far away to talk to. The many different rhythms and sounds produced on a drum act a bit like words in a sentence. Put together and they create messages. Tribes use drums to ask for help, to warn of danger and even to invite other tribes to parties.

Video of African Uniques traditional Dance and Music group - Djembe Rhythms

Week 5 (Heroes) Songs were an important part of the civil rights movement in the US. They motivated and helped keep spirits up during long marches.

Video of We Shall Overcome

Week 6 (Failure) This music is from a brave country who lost everything during the second World War. When Japan finally saw that they had lost the war, they looked at all their failures. They thought about the suffering they had caused people and the millions of families they had hurt. They were sorry for what they had done and learnt from their mistakes. They are now a peaceful nation who work to make the world a better place.

Video of Traditional Japanese Music 

A different video of Japanese music

Term 4 Week 2 (Power of Reading)

Born in London, Maya Sona Jobarteh's father comes from Gambia in west Africa.  She plays an instrument called a kora and the first female kora player to become famous.  The kora is a 21-stringed harp-like instrument. The instrument is an important element of the Mandingo peoples in West Africa and their playing is reserved only to certain families called Griot.

Video of Sona Jobarteh playing

Term 4 Week 4 (Making good choices)

The music of Cuba is popular all over the world which is amazing because it is only a tiny island in the middle of the ocean.
The main roll of the music is for people to dance to.
Cuban people are very proud of their music and of their dance. They love sharing them with the rest of the world and have set up Salsa clubs in cities across the globe! Including Bristol!!

Video of cuban music


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Hannah More Primary School, New Kingsley Road, St Philips, Bristol, BS2 0LT


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