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Hazelwood music camp puts students in touch with technology, opportunity

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HAZELWOOD, MO (KTVI) – With the right notes, you might just have a hit song. And with the Notes for Life Arts & Technology Program, they’re trying to help these students make that song and understand everything else that goes with it.

“This is a summer song you’re going to the beach with your friends and you're going to have a good time,” said Ahmad Hinds, aka DJ Katt, a high school sophomore. “I chose Latin and hip-hop, because I know Latin is a very good dance style music and I could easily fuse it and get a good sound out of it.”

Ronnie Notch, executive director of the program, partnered with Microsoft to teach the fundamentals of writing, recording, mixing, publishing, marketing and more at this six-week summer camp at Dale’s Music.

“Fine arts and music education, their funding is being cut so we thought of a solution,” Notch said. “My wife and I not only based on schools but on background in music trying to figure out how to be creative but really educated about the field you’re in as well.”

The program puts Surface Pro 4s in the students’ hands and they in-turn put their thoughts into music, creating new harmonies and friendships.

“What’s really great is that by providing access to technology to students that it empowers them to be as creative as they possibly can be. But then it’s also for them to understand their full potential,” said Trina Claggett, business sales specialist for Microsoft.

The musical mission created in St. Louis to help students in the Hazelwood district and beyond is spreading worldwide.

“The cool thing about it is the kids get to come up here and do some real recording and experience a real sound system with real engineers,” said Greg Smith, owner of Dale’s Music. “It’s probably one of the coolest programs I’ve seen come down the pike in a long time.”

“If you start out thinking you can do everything at once and do every single detail you’re only going to set yourself back,” said Tatianna Ray, a high school senior. “I just want everyone to know that experience grows with time.”