The Jacksonville-based blues-rock group Tedeschi Trucks Band recently donated 38 brand new musical instruments, valued at $48,000, to Englewood High School.
“We are deeply thankful to the Tedeschi Trucks Band for their incredible support, not just of the Englewood High School music program, but music programs across the district,” said Duval County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene. “Through their generous donations over the years, they have truly given hundreds of students the gift of music. Knowing that these instruments came from an alum from that school, and two very gifted local artists, makes the donation even more special. The students and staff at Englewood High School will benefit from this transformative gift for years to come.”
The donation, which includes guitars, wind instruments, drum sets, and more expensive instruments like tubas, sousaphones, and euphoniums, was made possible through Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation.
The foundation was created in 1996 by Michael Kamen. It’s named after the 1995 film Mr. Holland’s Opus, which starred Richard Dreyfuss. The movie looked at the profound effect a dedicated music teacher had on generations of students.
Englewood High School Band Director Daniel Reed said that thanks to this donation, every student enrolled in a music class at the school will now be able to start playing during the first week of school.
That hasn’t always been the case. Reed said that his students will no longer be limited by the cost of an instrument. In the past, he’s had to encourage students to learn a different instrument because the school didn’t have the one they wanted to play, whether that’s a “$4,000 tuba or a $2,500 euphonium.”
On top of the donation, the Grammy award-winning 12-piece band - led by the husband-and-wife team of guitarist Derek Trucks and singer/guitarist Susan Tedeschi - invited students and staff to their hometown performance at Daily’s Place earlier this summer. The special guests were allowed to go backstage to meet the band, where they were given the news about the donation to their music program.
“Susan and I were both fortunate to have instruments available to us when we were young,” said Trucks. “Sadly, this is not the case for so many students these days, at a time when having the tools to express creativity is so vital to their education. We were happy and humbled to be able to help.”
The donated instruments include:
- 3 Eastman ECL230 clarinets
- 3 Eastman EEP421 4-valve euphoniums
- 2 Eastman EBB534 4/4-size 4-valve tubas
- 2 Eastman EFL210 flutes
- 2 Eastman ETB432 trombones with F-attachments
- 1 LP LP646NY-AW conga set
- 1 Accent Drive LC17511 drum set
- 2 Eastman EPH324 sousaphones
- 2 Jupiter JMP1000M mellophones
- 20 Cordoba CP100 acoustic guitars