Making their own kind of music
Published 9:12 am Friday, September 5, 2014
FRANKLIN-Some members of Urban City Kidz Inc. want to make some noise, but it’s the kind that you’d expect to hear from a marching band. They’ve organized a drumming group, but there’s something missing: drums.
Tim Grant, who founded Urban City Kidz in 2004, said he’s found a $2,000 drum set and is raising money to buy it. Meanwhile, he’s looking for other resources and donors.
“I want as many [drums] as I can get, whatever I can get,” Grant said.
The idea for the project is two-fold. While working on a roof about four to six months ago, he saw and heard a neighbor, Dalyn Everett, playing on some drums that he had made a few years ago.
The sight and sound stirred something that had been on his mind and “it inspired me to go deeper with it,” said Grant.
That ‘something’ dates to a conversation that he and his wife, Tracey, had with Thomas Councill Jr.
Councill Jr., who volunteers as a drum leader, said that he was talking one day with the Grants when some children came up to them asking for something to do.
After discussion, Councill approached his pastor, the Rev. Vanessa Hinton, and church, Hickory Grove AME Zion, to allow some children to use the percussion instruments at the church. Permission was granted, and now 11 youngsters are learning how to play for free. The group sometimes practices before worship, for example, or even afterward such as this Sunday.
Now he’s passing along what he’s learned, and he credits Ed Barton.
“He’s the greatest band director ever,” Councill said with a laugh and smile as he recalled his time in band at Franklin High School in the mid-1970s. “We learned to read all the notes and music theory.”
In addition to this musical outlet, the Grants are also involved in tutoring. Tracey, who described herself as a “behind-the-scenes” kind of person, said she helps with math and English mostly to elementary- to middle-school students, and Tim works with the middle- to upper-school pupils. They’ll tutor at the MLK Center, the library or even in different houses.
To learn more or contribute instruments, money or time to the cause, contact Tim Grant at 540-810-3163, or Councill at 562-4291.
For tutoring, call Tracey Grant at 274-4182.