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 www.rodmacdonald.net.

Music Americana: The New Twenty-First Century Music

After a century of popular music dominated by jazz and rock and roll, twenty-first-century music offers everything from the tradition-based Celtic Women to the experimental Pentatonics, from the chart-topping traditional pop and R & B of Michael Buble and John Legend to the eye-popping virtuosity of Tommy Immanuel and John Pizzarelli. And all the while, Neil Young and Nirvana’s Dave Grohl keep the rock and roll dream alive. This series examines the work, biographies, and enduring importance of these musical artists and attempts to sort myth from reality, using videos and film excerpts, live performances, and a few surprises.
Four Lectures
  1. Keepers Of The Flame: - Neil Young, Dave Grohl
  2. The Beauty of Harmony: - Celtic Women, The Pentatonics
  3. Young Guys With Old Songs: - Michael Bublé, John Legend
  4. The Modern Guitarist: - John Pizzarelli, Tommy Immanuel

Course # F4T1 — Full 4 Weeks
Place:Auditorium, Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Dates:Tuesdays, October 25; November 1, 8, 15 2022
Time:2:30 - 4 PM
Fee:$60 / member; $80 / non-member

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The Songs Of Eric Clapton & Van Morrison

With Rod & The Humdingers

Eric Clapton and Van Morrison emerged from the 1960s British Invasion to become two of the most significant artists of modern times. Ranked the #2 guitarist of all time by Rolling Stone, Clapton’s hit songs with The Yardbirds, Cream, and Blind Faith were soon joined by “Layla,” “Tears In Heaven” and “Wonderful Tonight” as a solo, while Van Morrison brought his blues-jazz groove to the classics “Gloria,” “Moondance,” “Brown-Eyed Girl,” and “Have I Told You Lately That I Love You” as one of the most unique vocalists of our time. Join Rod MacDonald & the Humdingers for a fun and low-decibel tour through the lives and timeless music of these unique artists, as told in their songs.

Rod MacDonald became one of Greenwich Village’s top singer-songwriters during the 1980s and today performs throughout North America and Europe. In South Florida, he has been named “Best Local Acoustic Artist” by New Times and one of the “Ten Magnificent Musicians of Palm Beach County” by The Palm Beach Post, who named his 2014 CD, Later That Night, “Best Local CD of 2014.” He has been a Music Americana instructor at FAU since 2006.
Bill Meredith, drums, is the backbone of several Palm Beach County rock and roll bands, including Big Brass Bed and Illumination. He has toured throughout the US and Canada, and appears on more than a dozen CDs.
Brad Keller, keyboards, has performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival and with Maynard Ferguson and the Ink Spots, is the jazz piano instructor at Palm Beach State College and has taught music in Palm Beach County public schools for twenty years. He is also the co-author of the “Jazz Cats” books used internationally to introduce young students to jazz.
Doug Lindsey, bass and vocals, has been playing in south Florida bands for 30 years.
Mario LaCasse, guitar, has played rock, roots and jazz in such stellar Palm Beach County bands as Misbehavin, Flight, the Mario LaCasse band, Lowdown 13, the NattyBos, Groove Merchant, Copland Davis and Big Brass Bed.
Register Early! There is a $5 charge for registering on the day of a one-time lecture or event.

Course # F1T9 — One Time Event
Place:Auditorium, Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus
Dates:Tuesday, November 29 2022
Time:7 - 8:30 PM
Fee:$35 / member; $45 / non-member

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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

Register Now
 Last Modified 2/12/15