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Where’s The Music?

Music has an influence on people that most don’t realize. It can bear someone’s emotions, tell their stories, and tell listeners information that spoken word can’t convey, and UMW could benefit from more of it everywhere. 

Music is the backbone to most of what gets done around campus. It motivates people in the gym, keeps them focused while studying, and provides some pep for students to walk around campus to. A lot of people privately enjoy their music through headphones, but is music not more enjoyable when we experience it together? 

Now, I’m not saying we should be blaring music down Campus Walk aimlessly and without purpose. There should be some care and attention put into how it’s done. By playing music in very specific, hand picked locations, a stronger sense of camaraderie and school spirit could be brought to campus to help people feel like they belong at UMW. . 

To UMW’s credit, there are some places where music is featured prominently or in the background, either through events or just general ambiance, that are somewhat effective in how they do it. The Cedric Rucker University Center (CRUC) plays music all throughout the building, and the gym has music playing all day for students to enjoy while working out. The Campus Programming Board, CPB, holds weekly Karaoke that anyone can attend. . Through a lot of background work, WMWC plays in the gym, Katora, select places in the library, and the DKC . So there is already a pretty good music scene, but how could UMW improve it?

To start, downtown Fredericksburg has already got a great head start. Many places downtown have events for live music and solo performers that UMW could benefit from. By giving more opportunities to these artists, more people would have the courage and outlet to show their stuff and receive support to create more music. 

The argument can be made that since downtown already has these events, why should UMW have them? The answer is simple, downtown Fredericksburg is not UMW, and UMW is not downtown Fredericksburg. If there were an outlet for students on campus, maybe a weekly event for student musicians to show the fruits of their labor, students would have a safer and more reliable option for showing their talents to their peers. By playing music in specific places, with emphasis on local or student artists, more confidence and inspiration would be put in students to want to create music.

Places like common rooms in dorm buildings, or in the lobbies of academic buildings would be perfect for that type of ambiance. Dedicating certain rooms in the library as study rooms with soft, lyricless music playing in the background would give groups of students who like to study with music a place on campus to work with their friends.It would also open more ears to different types of music, which as lovers of music, everyone should strive for. While this change would take a lot of time, A lot of great progress has already been made around campus to play more music and let people indulge in one of the greatest joys in life With WMWC’s resurgence,  this could become a reality soon, and if so, a future where you think of UMW as a music first school could be around the corner. 

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