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The Sounds of Change: A Guide to the Stax Museum

Photo: Stax Museum of American Soul Music

World-wide, nonprofit Facing History and Ourselves in collaboration with Stax Museum of American Soul Music has launched a series of lessons online to help educators and scholars before or after visits to Stax Museum.

The lessons focus on connections between issues in society with music and lyrics of famous Stax songs such as “Soul Man” by Sam and Dave, “Green Onions” by Booker T. and the MGs, “Respect” by Otis Redding, “Respect Yourself” by the Staple Singers, and “If You’re Ready (Come Go With Me)” by the Staple Singers.

The four lessons are titled:

  • Music and Identity
  • Breaking the Racial Barriers
  • Respecting Self and Others
  • Music and Social Change

Andrew Reese, program associate for Facing History and Ourselves Memphis office, said:

“Working on this project gave me a tremendous appreciation for the music and mission of Stax, as well as the role music played in the civil rights movement. The relevance of the movement to today’s issues is very significant, and each of these songs provides a vignette to explore how music has always played an important role in society’s struggles.”

Each lessons includes photos, videos, and in-depth content linking music with topic to ensure a multimedia learning experience.

Stax Museum Director Lisa Allen said:

“Many people around the world know and love the music that was recorded at Stax Records. However, the role Stax played in affecting social change is a very important part of the label’s history. We are fortunate that our collaboration with Facing History and Ourselves provides us the opportunity to share that history in this context because it is just as relevant today as it was in the past and now generations of young people will benefit from it.”

You can view all of the lessons here.

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