Rod MacDonald

LLS Jupiter Distinguished Faculty Award 2012

Music Appreciation and Performance

Rod MacDonald began his career as a singer/songwriter in Greenwich Village, NY in 1973. He has 21 songs in the Smithsonian Folkways collection and has released 12 CDs of his own songs, including 2018’s “Beginning Again” and three CDs with the Palm Beach County band Big Brass Bed. He performs in festivals, clubs and concerts locally and throughout North America and Europe and was named “Best Local Acoustic Performer” in Broward and Palm Beach counties by the New Times and “one of the ten magnificent musicians of Palm Beach County” by the Palm Beach Post. An instructor with Osher LLI at Florida Atlantic University since 2006, his previous series include Music Americana, The Great American Songbook and The Roots of Rock and Roll.

Learn more about Rod at

Old & New Favorites

Celebrated for their grace, humor, passion, and style—and often considered the very best at what they do--great artists provide the music and words that define their time. From the brilliant perfection of violinist Joshua Heifetz to the sophisticated rhythms of the Duke Ellington Orchestra—now in its 100th year; from the raw testimony of Ethel Waters and Josh White to the elegance of My Fair Lady; from comic-book novelty hits to the classic arias of Jose Carreras; from the drama of Fleetwood Mac to the wise counsel of Leonard Cohen, their stories live on in song. This course examines the work, biographies, and enduring importance of these musical artists, and attempts to sort myth from reality, using updated videos and excerpts from feature films, live performances, and a few surprises.
Eight Lectures
  1. Virtuosity - Joshua Heifetz, Martha Argerich
  2. Birth Of The Blues - Ethel Waters, Etta James, Amy Winehouse
  3. When Swing Was King - Duke Ellington, Artie Shaw
  4. Folk Then & Now - Leadbelly, Josh White, Rhiannon Giddens
  5. Britain On Broadway - My Fair Lady, Six
  6. The Art Of Novelty Songs - Roger Miller, Ray Stevens, Weird Al
  7. Love, Marriage & Pop Music - Fleetwood Mac, Abba
  8. The Golden Voice - Jose Carreras, Leonard Cohen

Course # W8T1 — Full 8 Weeks
Place:Auditorium, Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Dates:Tuesdays, January 24; February 7, 14, 21, 28; March 7, 14, 21 2023
Time:2:30 - 4 PM
Fee:$130 / member; $165 / non-member

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The Songs Of Greenwich Village

From the 1940s, when Woody Guthrie, the Lomaxes and Pete Seeger teamed up to bring American folk music to the public, through the 1950s and 60s Folk Revival led by the Weavers, Kingston Trio, Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Judy Collins, Richie Havens and many others, to the New Folk Revival of the 1980s, Greenwich Village has produced some of the most enduring songs in folk and popular music. From the 1970s to the mid-90s Rod MacDonald was there, in the early days as fictionalized in his 2014 novel The Open Mike, later headlining clubs and working with fellow artists, co-founding the Greenwich Village Folk Festival, recording 5 albums and 21 songs for the Fast Folk Magazine (now in the Smithsonian Folkways collection), and living in one of the most vibrant communities in music history.

Join Rod MacDonald for this solo concert of the music and stories of this historic neighborhood, as told in its songs.
Register Early! There is a $5 charge for registering on the day of a one-time lecture or event.

Course # W1R4 — One Time Event
Place:Auditorium, Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Dates:Thursday, March 9 2023
Time:7 - 8:30 PM
Fee:$35 / member; $45 / non-member

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 Last Modified 2/12/15