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Music of Lost Voices
Artist/Band: Mike Ball
Lost Voices - http://lostvoices.org - is a group of professional folk and blues musicians dedicated to bringing the healing power of creating music to incarcerated and at-risk kids, allowing them to tell their stories and explore their feelings in song.
Right now there are more than one hundred thousand boys and girls between the ages of 12 and 18 living in “residential placement” facilities in the U. S. Many of these kids have been convicted of serious crimes. But they are also children, and children by definition have the potential to grow into something better.
Lost Voices founder Mike Ball leads teams of songwriters into the juvenile detention facilities, where they conduct intense songwriting workshops with groups of ten to twelve kids. Then the kids perform their work alongside their new musical mentors in professionally-staged concerts, in which they experience a pure dose of accomplishment and self esteem - some of them for the first time in their lives.
To bring a taste of the kids’ work out into the world, Mike Ball, Kitty Donohoe, Josh White, Jr., Reverend Robert Jones, and Peter Madcat Ruth went into the studio to record eight songs that were written in Lost Voices workshops over the past few years. Two of the songs, Eddie’s Choice and How Many Years, are “group” songs, each one co-written by all the members of their workshop. The other songs are individual poems written by the kids and put to music by Josh White, Jr., Kitty Donohoe, and Mike Ball.
Death Letter Blues,, performed by Reverend Robert Jones, is a version of a Son House song that Robert uses to help the kids understand how folk and blues songs relate to musical styles more familiar to them.
All of the artists and our producer, Scott Clauser, volunteered their time and talent for this project. To learn more about Lost Voices, go to lostvoices.org.