Follow the Music debuts at the Guild Theatre on October 29

by Contributed Content on October 25, 2023

Follow the Music, a music education and emerging artists program developed in partnership with Elevate Oakland and leading arts, entertainment, media and sports organizations in the Bay Area, will kick off it inaugural program on Sunday, October 29 (6:00 pm) at the Guild Theatre in Menlo Park with a concert showcasing the diversity of young artists in the Bay Area. Tickets are available online.

It will feature performances by rising young artists from Oakland School for the Arts, GLIDE Memorial Church, San Francisco Community Music Center, ELM (Enriching Lives Through Music), Blue Bear School of Music, and SFJAZZ. The kickoff is presented by KALW and sponsored by Community Bank of the Bay.

The kickoff will be attended by NFL Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott and other 49er alumni, and musician Sheila E., who will share a few words about Elevate Oakland and the importance of supporting music education. The goal of the event is to center the conversation about music education and supporting young artists in the Bay Area and beyond.

“Watching young, gifted athletes rise from being a kid to an adult is an incredible journey,” said Lott. “We believe music can have the same impact on young lives, and we want to make sure that the young musicians have the same coaching and support that athletes get. We believe that we can help provide that for young people.”

Follow the Music came together after conversations between Ronnie Lott, event producer Phil Green and longtime talent agent/manager Mike Kappus (John Lee Hooker, Mavis Staples, and others), who was developing a plan to bring many of the top youth arts organizations together to share best practices, and host events in different venues around the Bay Area. Over the subsequent months, they put together an advisory board to help identify initial partners, produce the kickoff event, and map out the longer term vision. The group recently joined forces with Elevate Oakland and two of its co-founders, Sheila E. and Jason Hofmann.

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