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HNR 340 – Inside the Words and Music

Course Schedule:

M 5:15 – 8:00 p.m.


Please check MySlice for the latest class location.


Jeffrey Pepper Rodgers

Counts toward:

HNR Hum, Collaboration, Public Presentation

MySlice Info:

Class #: 15958
Section: M009
# Credits: 3

Course Description:

This course peers inside the creative process of some of the world’s best songwriters to explore larger questions about creativity in any medium. Where do ideas come from? How does personal experience translate into great stories that anyone can relate to? How do artists find an original style? These kinds of questions have been my preoccupation for 20 years—as a songwriter (a recent grand prize winner of the John Lennon Songwriting Contest), music journalist (Acoustic Guitar magazine, NPR’s All Things Considered), and author (Rock Troubadours, which includes my conversations with Joni Mitchell, Paul Simon, Ani DiFranco, Dave Matthews, and more). In this class we will read about writing and music, listen to and discuss songs (your favorites as well as mine), hear clips from my interview archive, and discover some top‐notch live local music. We will also collaborate on organizing a campus musical event, such as a songwriter showcase featuring SU students. Active musicians are welcome in the class, but all that is really required is a love of music and a curiosity about the mix of inspiration and perspiration (to steal a phrase from Thomas Edison) that makes great art possible. Ultimately, I hope our time together will stoke your own creativity—whatever form it takes.

Notes about this course:

Notes about this section:

Class times and locations often change. Please verify your class schedule in MySlice as these will not be updated after their initial posting.