The KVBA’s Education Committee is once again taking the blues to the Kalamazoo area classrooms. A 45-minute presentation is offered to any schools that responds to letter or requests a follow-up contact via the form below.

Blues in the Schools

Mike and Doug

Mike and Doug

The KVBA Blues in the Schools presenters are Mike Irelan and Doug Beckman. Mike tells the story of the blues from its early Delta origins through its influence on modern rock and roll. Doug lends his musical talents on his “cigar box” guitar and his National Steel guitar as only he can do. Sometimes the students help out by playing harmonicas or kazoos provided by the KVBA. Overhead pictures of famous blues artists and sound bytes of their work are all part of the presentation. It is a successful blend of history, humor, and music. They even have blues coloring books to give to the little ones. If you watch them perform you quickly realize that Mike and Doug not only love the blues, they love working with students.

Some of the schools that they have visited are: Winchell Elementary, Comstock HS, Mattawan HS, Alamo Elementary, North Glade Montessori, Hillside MS, Woods Lake Elementary, Maple St Elementary, Vicksburg HS, Green Meadow Elementary, Dorr Elementary, Lakeside Academy, Moorsbridge Elementary. This program is offered absolutely free. There are still open dates available.

If you are interested in booking a presentation, you can contact Nancy King– Secretary (via email).


  • Jim says:

    I would like to learn how to play a blues harmonica. Please contact me at your earliest convenience. Jim

  • I am so glad that Doug and Mike and KVBA, are continuing to take American Music, especially -the Blues- into schools in SW Michigan.
    Your program is vital; informing children about the awesome music that this country has given the entire world. The history of The Blues is so important to the understanding of the US experience…from the injustice of slavery to our higher goals as humans; to be the best that we can be. I’m glad to have had a part in KVBA’s beginnings.

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