Sonoma Jazz Festival supports music education


Rock and Roll Hall of Famer John Fogerty is the featured attraction. Before that the blues band Tedeschi Trucks takes the stage. That's the band formed by singer Susan Tedeschi and her husband, guitarist Derek Trucks. He is also with the Allman Brothers band. The two had separate bands, then they had children and touring separately became too much. Now they are on the road together with their children.

Tedeschi gave a music class to students from Altimira Middle School on Friday, showing them the importance of music and the arts in education.

"Just think you can be creative and use math and reading with music because music is math," she told the students. "People don't always think that, but you think about chords and intervals."

She grew up in Boston, but discovered southern blues, gospel, rock and roll at age 6.

"Everybody is very in tune with each other, and my husband, I know pretty much what he's doing every second and if I don't know what I'm doing, I'll look at him and he'll let me know what I'm supposed to do pretty much." she said.

Proceeds from the Sonoma event help keep music in schools. It provides instruments and keeps students interested in learning music.

"Our mission since day one has been to support music education," said Joe Lang of Sonoma Jazz Plus. "This is a great way to give back to the community when it desperately needs the music."

"Children really need that, it helps break up the day," said Tedeschi. "You can't just do math and English all day long."

The band is the opening act at the festival. They will perform at the 3,800-seat Field of Dreams along with Fogerty, Sheryl Crow and The Gypsy Kings. When they finish in Sonoma, the Tedeschi Trucks band gets on their bus, heads to Southern California, then back to The Warfield in San Francisco Sunday night. Their new album, "Revelator," comes out June 7.

Tedeschi says her career has been like that field of dreams.

"I got to sit in and play with a lot of my heroes," she said. "I love what I do."

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