March 28

Ep. 18 – Understanding the impact of colonisation and exploring the ‘why’ of music education w/ Nate Holder


Nate Holder is a musician, author and international speaker based in the West Midlands, United Kingdom. I have been keeping an eye on Nate's work for the last couple of years and I recently came across his book series called ‘The Why Books’. Along with his own podcast series for students, called 'The Why Music Podcast', Nate's work challenges music educators to ask some important questions about what, why and how they're doing the things they do. Nate has worked in Germany and has been forming connections with some international school educators, but is equally fascinated by this world (as you will hear!).

In this episode, we explore:

  • Nate's cultural heritage, musical identity, and experience as a musician and music educator.
  • Nate's upcoming book called 'Listen and Celebrate', which celebrates composers from a range of backgrounds and musical styles and includes a range of fun activities for primary/elementary students.
  • the important nuances in the word 'decolonisation' and how this concept might apply to music education.
  • the importance of understanding colonial histories in the countries we're living in.
  • the way colonisation impacts perspectives and provision of music education.
  • the history of international schooling and its' potential ties to colonisation.

As you will discover, this episode is not about 'throwing things out' or 'decolonising music education'. It is an encouragement for us all to take the time to explore the colonial histories of the worlds we exist in. I thoroughly enjoyed this wide-ranging and challenging conversation and hope you do too.

Nate is excited to connect with our community, so please do reach out to him if you're interested in knowing more about his work.


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colonisation, cultural diversity, Interview, music education, research