Ted Brown Music Educational Services

Choose to Teach - September 2023

Here's our next video in our Choose to Teach series! Today's uplifting message comes from Florida band director Jordan Sawyer.

A Message from Jordan Sawyer

It's a hard job, but it's a noble job — you have to keep that it mind. What we do is really important.

Jordan Sawyer
Florida Band Director

It's hard. It's a hard job, but it's a noble job. You have to keep that in mind. Like, what we do is really important. Got me through school. Got my sister through school. Kept my brother in school. Sometimes it's not just the expression of music or sometimes it's not, you know, how well the ratings went or whether or not you got that line passed off. Sometimes it’s, you could approach your band director with something you couldn’t approach your parents about or something you couldn't approach your friends about. We're important. We're a part of the community that fills a roll in children's lives that is very clearly absent. But it's hard because on top of that we have to have great bands. So my advice would be keep that in mind. It's hard. It's supposed to be hard. And you're meant for it. If you're willing to tuck in and meet the challenge, and there's nothing wrong with admitting it's hard and doing what's necessary to make it through things that are hard.

What motivates me to continue to do this? About once every couple of weeks on Facebook because I'm an old person. I'll get a notification, friend request or a video or something of a kid playing their instrument. I have a small army of musicians who continue to play. And I also cannot go out into the community. In fact, it happened. I got off the plane in Chicago. I'm from South Florida. Got off the plane in Chicago. Standing at baggage claim, It's quiet. And I hear from behind me, Mr. Sawyer, previous students parent I'm just recognized. My son, you know, he still sometimes picks up his trombone and has a great time. I said, well, what's he doing? He's in college. He's in the marching band. But he's not studying music. But he has a great time. You know, you really just changed his life. That's what a dad told me. You changed his life. I try not to cry while he's telling me this. I'm like, oh yeah, of course. You know. He walks way I'm like, I changed his life.

Those things keep me going. You know, and I have kids right now. I can see it. I can see the future that they're going to have. And they're not all going to continue to play. They're not all going to go on to make these top ensembles or have lives of music performance, but they're going to be consumers and lovers of music. And I know that, I have proof. And that keeps me going.