Musical Musings


COME AND SEE  By Scott Rieker Director, Emerson Choir     In one of my favorite stories from the Christian scriptures, some folks are attracted to Jesus’ teaching. When they inquire more deeply, he doesn’t try to explain every detail and every contingency. Instead, he says, “Come and see.” He’s trying to convey that … Continued

MUSICAL MUSINGS: Block Grants and You!

By Scott Rieker Choir Director, Emerson Unitarian Universalist Church  402-202-8435 (cell)     In July, I had the opportunity to teach at a summer music camp in Santa Monica. While some of the attendees were from a low socioeconomic background, most came from affluence and could afford the $1,000 cost of attendance. In fact, some … Continued


About 20 minutes before the end of our usual choir rehearsal in the Sanctuary last Thursday, Scott Rieker, Emerson’s excellent choir director, called all of us into the Pavilion. Surprise! Surprise! There in the center of the table was a huge, luscious chocolate cake and two bottles of wine! Scott had also added two large … Continued

MUSICAL MUSINGS: Process, Product, Professionals, Participation, and Pride

MUSICAL MUSINGS:  Process, Product, Professionals, Participation, and Pride By Scott Rieker Choir Director, Emerson Choir I have only ever been officially “quoted” once. I was teaching a workshop on the curricular aspect of music education, and I stated, “With music, the product is the process, and the performance is merely a recognition of a … Continued


By Scott Rieker Choir Director, Emerson Choir   Recently at a concert, I watched a young family commit the unforgivable sin of walking into a concert while a performance was occurring (rather than waiting for applause). It was apparent from merely observing the two parents and five children that they were not the “usual … Continued

MUSICAL MUSINGS: A Dry-Well Day and Assorted Thoughts on Life

By Scott Rieker Choir Director, Emerson Choir The pastor at my grandparents’ church used to speak of having a “dry-well day” when he was having difficulty coming up with a sermon. Then, he’d usually find the most touching message to convey. And, sometimes he’d relate a bunch of disconnected thoughts and leave it to … Continued

MUSICAL MUSINGS: Torches! Pitchforks! Your Call to Action and Advocacy!

By Scott Rieker Choir Director, Emerson Choir Music: Why bother?! I am in the midst of a cordial, yet passionate, “extended discussion” with one of my choral colleague (we’ll call him J–) about the importance of music to humans in an existential sense. For his part, J– argues for Maslow: Humans have a hierarchy … Continued