The Mississippi Music Foundation’s mission is to provide education through seminars, internet, and conferences thus enabling individuals to become conversant with multiple genres,music technology, musical instruments and Mississippi Music History.
Other Foundation Goals:
The MSMF staff, qualified educators, and volunteers will organize and conduct quarterly events at schools, libraries, government buildings and at the MSMF offices. The activities provided will be free of charge dependent upon facility capacity to MSMF friends who register within the allotted registration time. The budget will comprise staff, research of educational needs, event organization and marketing.
The MSMF will promote interdisciplinary collaborations with established Mississippi music artists, educators, and industry professionals, hosting an annual public forum focused on discussing the origins of traditional Mississippi music, the social and economic situations that fuel it, and where will it go from here. The forum will be held in a public arena for a nominal fee to the public for venue, production, and Artist compensation. It is the Foundation’s hope this event will have a significant impact on nurturing future musical development.
The MSMF will support both the blues and gospel traditions in greater northern Mississippi by bringing in community players and church choirs from the African American community as well as other Mississippi music communities. It is the Foundation’s intention that participants in these development projects will not be charged and will have an opportunity to use free studio time once per month for those who want to be exposed to both the musical tradition and newer music and production techniques.
Throughout the year, MSMF will draw on volunteers to help with its function. These volunteers can be trained and shared with other non-profit service providers, creating a tight knit group of community-focused individuals. Volunteers will be chosen through planning and recruitment by the MSMF Board as a result of the volunteers’ strong interest in the MSMF mission, then oriented in that mission, supervised and formally recognized by the MSMF. Volunteers are a very important focus of the MSMF.
Student volunteers can be provided with service opportunities and internships. Through its networking with high schools, colleges and universities, MSMF can provide students with real world experience, musical training, and technical experience. Students excelling in academics and studies related to the MSMF mission will be considered for such opportunities, which upon completion could be credited toward their education. MSMF considers student volunteer opportunities very important not only to the MSMF but also to the future of Mississippi music.
Musical history appreciation will be planned annually in northern Mississippi and on Beale Street in Memphis free of charge to community participants. The history tour will include visits to the Beale Street Museum and the Stax Museum in Memphis, where Dr. Reginald Martin serves on the board.
The MSMF also plans to bring local and national businesses together in order to draw attention to the Mississippi music community. In the past, companies such as the Rudolph Wurlitzer Electric Piano Company in Holly Springs, MS and The Peavey Corp in Meridian, MS have not only brought innovation to the music world but jobs as well. Through MSMF’s “Made in Mississippi” campaign, we hope to bring innovation and jobs back to the music community. Our website will have a dedicated section of networking resources for this purpose.
The MSMF will also coordinate weekly workshops on songwriting, recording, merchandising and other industry related topics. Held at the MSMF offices or local recording studios, these informative educational programs will be given by industry professionals and offered free to MSMF friends.
Like “Made in Mississippi,” MSMF will provide a portion of its website networking site so that artists and entertainment buyers have an opportunity to collaborate. The “Come Together” section will offer tips for the working musicians including touring, CD replication, merchandising, and audio and lighting. This feature will be free to MSMF friends. Additionally, friends will be afforded discounts for merchandise and services through MSMF partners. Resources are available 24/7 to support musicians.
In addition, the MSMF hopes to be able to put together a plan similar to the very successful Memphis Plan Health Insurance for musicians and industry workers meeting the appropriate guidelines. Medical support and funding are currently being researched for this endeavor.