It is every music lover’s dream to be able to take a university course based on their favourite artists. Even better? A course that focuses on analyzing these artists’ songs and their meanings.
Well, this dream came true for many at Ryerson University in Toronto, Ontario.
Students at Ryerson will now be able to take a course that delves into two of Toronto’s most influential music artists in the industry: Drake and The Weeknd. The course is titled “Deconstructing Drake & The Weeknd,” and students will be able to study the history of the artists, their careers, and the lyrics of their songs.
Dalton Higgins, creator of the course and music professor at Ryerson, told the CBC “he was prompted to create the course to show students that learning can be fun and inspire the next generation of young creative artists in Toronto.”
He wanted to teach the course to not only talk about artists and their craft and touch on the societal issues of this time, and studying Drake and the Weeknd gave him room to go into depth on many cultural and race issues present today.
This must be one of the most innovative ideas at a university course in a long while. One of the most impacting factors to people, no matter their age, is music. Music is a universal language, with meanings and emotions placed within a space that typically lasts around four minutes. There are so many things students can learn not just from the course and the two artists, but from different genres and people.
It might be worth having other universities follow suit. Imagine a three-hour lecture jamming to music and breaking down your favourite hits. This is something I do regularly, and would love to earn a credit for it as a part of my homework.
Drake and the Weeknd aren’t the only artists shown in a course like this. Higgins created this course after he noticed other universities beginning to study Lady Gaga and Miley Cyrus. With this trend becoming more popular, the possibilities could open up for studying other artists.
Many would love to take a class on Olivia Rodrigo, a rising star. She has so many hits and these songs are crafted with heartbreak, story, and emotions. Little Mix would be a cool girl group to analyze. While they have awesome bops, many of their songs note on feminism and women’s power. There could even be a course on Michael Jackson, Whitney Houston, Prince, Queen, or even Demi Lovato.
Music loves to tell a story, and these artists do that with their music. Not only would it be an awesome class where fun can be had, but students and the professor alike can learn so much from studying these famous people and their stories.
This could be particularly beneficial for artists who have passed, giving students and professors time to explore and connect with the lifestyle and music.
This just seems like a nice twist on a regular English or music class, and if KPU ever offered something like this, I would be the first one to sign up.