Empowering Youth Through Musical Self Expression


Therapy. Empowerment. Music.


Our program consists of semi-weekly workshops held over an 8-week period, culminating in a compilation CD and live community performance. Program participants will shape their life experiences into an original song with support of STOP staff. Each week, a youth mentor who has graduated the program will be present to assist with the process. For every meeting, STOP will provide transportation support and meals to each of the program participants.  In addition, ongoing feedback will be requested from participants to better tailor future programs to community needs and improve access to our services.


Once the participants have been determined, a Program Orientation will be held to cover the program goals, schedule, materials, and expectations.  Parents will be invited to attend the orientation session. Next there will be a Studio Orientation where participants explore a professional recording studio, meet the producers and engineers, and learn how to find and select instrumental beats.


Participants will first browse through instrumental beats and choose one that appeals to them. Then be guided to brainstorm and select a theme for their original song. They will be instructed in lyrical composition, song structure, and learn how to write verses and hooks.

PHASE 2: Recording

During this phase, participants will record their work. They will be trained how to make their song sound exactly as intended and how to polish it. Their songs will be recorded, mixed, and mastered at Legion Beats in Terra Linda under the supervision of producer Gabe Schillinger and his staff.

Phase 3: VIDeo production

Participants will be taught the basics of music video production and learn how to create storyboards for the outline of their music videos. Once scene locations have been determined, footage will be shot in the field. STOP staff will direct and edit an original music video for each of the participants’ songs. 

PHASE 4: performinG

Participants will be trained on the essential aspects of public performance, including emotion, stage presence, and image. STOP peer mentors will give advice and feedback. A rehearsal of their live performance will be completed.

Phase 5: completion

A public performance and graduation ceremony will be held to showcase the hard work of the participants. The participants will perform their original songs live and all their music videos will be presented. Refreshments will be provided and compilation CDs available for a small donation. 

music is the movement of sound to reach the soul for the education of its virtue
— plato