New Sounds and New Perspectives with Black Violin

Talking Up Music Education is a podcast from The NAMM Foundation about music education. Recorded live from The 2017 NAMM Show, episode 28 includes interviews with classically-trained hip-hop violin and viola duo Black Violin.

“What the arts did for me is allowed me to open up my mind,” said Wil B. “I’m a professional viola player, but I could have been anything else because of the arts.”

During the podcast, Kev Marcus and Wil B. share their story of growing up in Fort Lauderdale, attending Dillard High School of Performing Arts, and their belief that the arts allow students to open their minds and dream.


Sound Bites From the Podcast

“All kids see [are] the football players, the basketball players. So we’ve got to get these communities to understand that there’s other ways of expressing [yourself].” – Wil B.

“We’re so blessed to be able to do this and to play violin and viola for a living in front of a bunch of sold-out crowds. It’s amazing to be able to do this, and to take it back to education. I didn’t have lessons. I didn’t have any of that. I just had a second period, and I had a class, and I took it seriously and got a full scholarship and turned it into all of this. – Kev Marcus.

“We try to engage with kids and also the parents. A lot of times…[the education system] give[s] up on the arts, they give up on strings… and the kids see that, and the adults see that. So I know we have a lot of voice than most people, and we try to use our voice as much as we can, particularly back home.” – Wil B.

Talking Up Music Education is a podcast produced by The NAMM Foundation about music education. Host Mary Luehrsen chats with teachers, parents, students and community leaders who share stories about what they are doing to create music learning opportunities. Please download, share and subscribe to keep up with the stories that make a difference in music education advocacy.