Mike's Mashups

Mashups: What are they? What is the history of them? What is their purpose? How can you use them for teaching?
It was close to the beginning of this past school year when I began to notice a new form of creative expression becoming more and more popular in the world of digital media. That form, currently known as “Mashups,” can refer to creative text, graphics, music or video “mix-togethers”.
The origin of the idea for mashups is based on the practice of live deejays who started spinning two turntables at once, essentially overlapping the two songs being played in such a way as to create something new and different from the original two.

A mashup is defined by Wikipedia in the following ways.
• Mashup (general) a digital media file containing any or all of text, graphics, audio, video, and animation, which recombines and modifies existing digital works to create a derivative work.
• Mashup (music), the musical genre encompassing songs which consist entirely of parts of other songs
• Mashup (video), a video that is edited from more than one source to appear as one
• Mashup (web application hybrid), a web application that combines data and/or functionality from more than one source

The potential for using mashups in the classroom is unlimited. As a music teacher, I could use them in a variety of ways.
• Have students go to mashup websites and listen to some mashups and discuss them.
• They could answer analytic questions about the pieces like:
What are the two songs being used? Do they work well together? Why or why not? Do they work Lyrically? Musically? Rhythmically?
• They could create their own mashups… plan them, ask for feedback, tweek them analyze them… etc.
• They could be asked to post a critical suggestion to another mashup creator.
• Students could be asked to come up with a mashup for a particular situation like a play or video where background music is needed.
Teachers of other subject areas could do similar projects using graphic, video or game mashups. The potential for using this form is limited only by our imaginations!

Here are some interesting mashup related websites to checkout.




http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=driXX37mPiA granny!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvnNRnc7wZw mashup video

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