Frost St Saturdays

Upcoming meeting: Saturday, Feb 25, at 3 Frost St in Cambridge. Our discussion will focus on…

Meeting our members where they are at


  • 4:00pm Music
  • 4:30pm Discussion
  • 5:30pm More music
  • 6:00pm Potluck

Following our indoor protocol, rapid tests will be available for those that need them.

Zoom dial-in from our online page.

Discussion Preview

“Among us are artists and engineers, students and teachers, administrators and nannies and baristas; some of us are introverts, and some of us are extroverts; some of us are young kids and some of us are parents; we’re professional musicians alongside enthusiastic amateurs and first day beginners; we are all different genders, ethnicities, and sexualities. Everyone is welcome, everyone has a part to play, and we are all in it together, come what may…”  Excerpt from K. Leppmann, Learning on Parade with the School of HONK (2020).

When we opened our school, we knew we wanted our group to be open to all ages and all levels of experience, learning-by-ear and performing-every-week. And we knew it had to be fun for everyone. We knew of no such other band in our midst, so we figured it out as we went along. Many of our upcoming Saturday discussions will focus on various ways we have learned to help us curate, coordinate and program this spontaneous fun every week, partly a “behind-the-scenes” look at “how our sausage is made,” but also hopefully an opportunity to expand our repertoire of skills and ideas that can make our fun even better.

We’re going to begin this week with something at the heart of our whole approach—meeting our members wherever they are at. That means where they are at, musically, of course, in terms of prior experience, and part of keeping it fun is catering as best we can to different members’ needs for musical instruction or other help, and watching out for everyone’s physical and social well being, as others may be focussed on the music (of course!) We’ll share some examples of different approaches to help cater to members with different needs, as lessons we can all draw on.

But to keep it fun and playful, mentors also need to be especially aware and responsive to members’ (and mentors’) different expectations and inclinations. This can be something as obvious as avoiding unsolicited mansplaining, or something as important as our deference to other mentors assigned particular roles. But it also involves understanding ourselves, how our own approaches to learning music might differ from others, as well as how we (and others) “present” to our members in gauging our interactions, especially with our newer members. We’ll review some questions we might ask ourselves, about how we present to others, our learning style and experience, and how these might contrast with other members and mentors, styles, presentation and experience.

What are some examples/experiences of different ways people approach/learn our music?
What are some examples/experiences of dis-connect between mentor and member?
What should we know about ourselves, and about how we “present” to others, in offering support to others?


Possible upcoming sessions TBA


Choosing tunes and arranging music
Embodying performance and spectacle
Tips for playing sick solos
Facilitating creativity and cultivating musicianship
Behind the Music
Arranging Workshop
Street spectacle and ecstatic ritual book discussion
Tips and practice for tune leading and ensemble playing
Programming to balance spontaneity with ritual