Workshops & Lectures
Osher Lifelong Learning Society, Florida Atlantic University

January 9, 2021 Updated . Rod MacDonald also lectures for private organizations (see list of lectures)
and leads workshops for songwriters 
Course information on LLS website:   Boca Raton    Jupiter

Begins January 19 (Jupiter), 8 weeks!
Music Americana:
Music For The Ages

Instructor Rod MacDonald
Recipient of the LLS 2012 Distinguished Faculty Award

     Creating music that lasts, a few artists remain celebrated through the years, their songs legendary, their styles imitated but never surpassed, their triumphs and losses brilliantly conveyed in their work. From the shocking symphonies of Stravinsky to the shock humor of the Producers; from Gershwin’s bluesified opera Porgy & Bess to the epic cool of Miles Davis; from the defiant passion of Edith Piaf to the working man’s poet Bruce Springsteen, great music and songs carry on the story of our times. 
     This course will examine the work, biographies and enduring importance of these musical artists, and attempt to sort myth from reality, using updated videos and excerpts from feature films, live performances and a few surprises.

The Russians Are Coming: Sergei Rachmaninoff, Igor Stravinsky
Blues And The Opera: Porgy & Bess, Ella Fitzgerald
The Art Of Confession: Edith Piaf, Joni Mitchell
The Swingers: Frank Sinatra, Harry Connick, Jr
The Horn Section: Miles Davis, Branford & Wynton Marsalis
Smart Guys With Guitars: Buddy Holly, Paul Simon
The New Broadway Musical: The Producers, The Band’s Visit
The Legacy: Joan Baez, Bruce Springsteen

Jupiter Campus
Course #W8T2
Place: Lifelong Learning Complex, Jupiter Campus, Donald Ross Rd
Dates: Tuesdays — 1/19, 26; 2/2,9,16,23; 3/2,9
Time: 2:30 p.m.
Fee: $100 / member; $130 / non-member

(561) 799 - 8547 or click here

Boca Raton Campus

No Winter courses
Time: 3 pm
Location: Barry and Florence Friedberg Auditorium, Boca Raton Campus
Fees: $100 / member; $130 / non-member
Registration Info call  561-297-3171 or click here
    Biographical Information: Rod MacDonald began his career as a singer/songwriter in Greenwich Village in New York City in 1973. He has 21 songs in the Smithsonian Folkways collection and 12 solo CDs, including the 2018 release "Beginning Again". He performs at festivals and in clubs and concerts locally and throughout North America and Europe, and was named Best Local Acoustic Performer in Broward and Palm Beach counties by New Times, and one of the Ten Magnificent Musicians of Palm Beach County by the Palm Beach Post. An instructor with LLS since 2006, his previous series include Folksinging in Modern Times, The Great American Songbook, The Roots of Rock & Roll, and Mastery Of The Art.

The Songs of Bob Dylan


Rod & The Humdingers

winter 2021

   Once dubbed “The Voice of His Generation” by the press, Bob Dylan turns 80 in 2021, and is the only songwriter ever to win the Nobel prize for Literature. From the Civl Rights-era anthem “Blowing In The Wind” through “Like A Rolling Stone” --#1 on Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs List—to winning Grammies in 1980 for Best Gospel Recording and 1998 for Album Of The Year, he has set the pace with style and substance for six decades.

  Join Rod MacDonald & the Humdingers for a fun and low-decibel tour through the life, music and genius of this legend of American music, as told in his songs.

  Rod MacDonald, guitar, has 12 CDs of his songs, including 2018’s Beginning Again, as heard on WLRN’s Folk and Acoustic Music. He performs frequently in South Florida and throughout North America and Europe, and is a lifelong devotee of popular song. He has been an instructor with LLS 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.

    John Smotherman, lead guitar, plays with Big Brass Bed, Illumination and several Palm Beach County bands. His exquisite solos caused the Palm Beach Post to label him one of the “Ten Magnificent Musicians of Palm Beach County.”

Jupiter Campus
COURSE NO. W1W2       Time:   7 pm
Date:   Wed., February 3
Location:     Lifelong Learning Auditorium, Jupiter Campus
Info call  561-799 - 8547 or click here
Boca Raton Campus-canceled
COURSE NO. FPL12105       Time:   7 p
Date:    tba
Location:     Lifelong Learning Auditorium, Boca Raton Campus
Info call  561-297-3171 or
click here

lectures at community associations and libraries...recent topics have included live performance/lectures such as "Songs of Greenwich Village" (solo),  "The Life & Times of Bob Dylan," (solo or with Big Brass Bed), and "The Search for the Birth of Rock & Roll"
(solo or with The Humdingers)
.....Lectures using dvds and video materials include "The Beatles: Coming to America," "Cole Porter/Johnny Mercer," "Frank Sinatra" and many other topics. To see a list of lectures, click here.

Songwriting Workshops
"Songwriting For Self Expression" and "Songwriting & Current Events" are for beginning thru advanced songwriters, to inspire and sharpen each writer's skill and ability to express oneself. At the New York Open Center, the Amp Shop in West Palm Beach, Common Ground on the Hill, the Southeast Unitarian-Universalist Summer Institute, the Endicott (NY) Arts Center, S Florida Folk Festival, etc, from one session to several, sometimes one evening a week.

Here's an article in Binghamton, NY: