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Festival provides forum for Detroit School of Rock and Pop

of the Oakland Press

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Having Arts, Beats & Eats land in its backyard was not an opportunity the Detroit School of Rock and Pop Music in Royal Oak was going to let pass.

“Being located there, I just wanted to make sure we did something great for the community,” says Jason Gittinger, who founded the Washington Street school in 2008. “We’ve got a lot of stuff going on here, and this is a great chance to show it off.”

Gittinger and his staff and DSRP students will certainly be busy during the first three days of Arts, Beats & Eats. The crew will take up residence in the Stagecrafters Theatre, 415 S. Lafayette, Friday though Sunday (Sept. 3-5), presenting a combination of student band concerts and Access to Superstars clinics 1-5 p.m. each day.

Friday, DJ Invisible of the group AfroFlow will speak about turntable techniques, followed by the Motor City Horns, who will demonstrate their craft by arranging a song with students from Royal Oak High School and the DSRP. Saturday’s sessions will feature a roundtable with recording studio owners such as Al Sutton of Rustbelt in Royal Oak and Dave Feeny from Tempermill in Ferndale. Eminem collaborator and Was (Not Was) alumnus Luis Resto, whose daughter is a DSRP student, will speak and also play with his Combo de Momento band.

On Sunday, DSRP will present a roundtable with music business insiders talking about management, booking, media and other behind-the-scenes concerns, while percussionist Larry Fratangelo, a Detroit legend most recently part of Kid Rock’s Twisted Brown Trucker band, will hold a clinic.

The performances, Gittinger says, will showcase the range of the 10 bands working regularly at DSRP — from a group of 6- and 7-year-olds playing Survivor’s “Eye of the Tiger” and songs by Justin Bieber and the White Stripes to adult ensembles and an all-girl crew. “We let every band pick their own music and do their own thing, which makes it more fun to watch,” Gittinger explains.

DSRP has about 100 students enrolled in its various programs, as well as an extensive series of podcasts online. The school is at 1109 S. Washington St. Call 888-988-7625 or visit www.detroitschoolofrockandpop.com for more information.

Web Site: www.detroitschoolofrockandpop.com

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