Music video with a whole school as the instrument

Ben Meyers is a 17-year-old who spent a month putting together this video that combines improvised percussion—done on the lockers, doors and other various parts of his school—with piano and xylophone melodies. It's all played by him, recorded separately and edited together in the video. Wired's Steve Silberman tells me that young Ben is off to the Berklee College of Music in the fall. Congrats!


  1. What school is this filmed at? It sounds like they say “Good Morning TJ” in the middle of it.

    1. I remember reading that this was shot in Thomas Jefferson High. No idea where that is or which one it is if there are many.

  2. I guess if that Berklee thing doesn’t work out, he can join the next national tour of STOMP.

  3. Nifty– but after a month, I don’t think you get to call it “improvised” anymore. Kudos on the recording quality!

  4. That’s a pretty interesting piece, but there are no xylophones in it. Marimba, glockenspiel, vibraphone, no xylophone. {/music pedantry].

  5. That’s a pretty eloquent statement about the importance of arts and music in schools.

    Wonderful job Ben! Much success to you!

  6. That is fantastic. Congrats, Ben. I prefer to think he’ll walk the path of Evelyn Glennie rather than STOMP or Blue Man Group.

    To pick a nit and agree with Day Vexx, it does say in the credits at the end it was composed by Ben. Therefore, it’s not improvised.

    1. Actually, the “improvised” part refers to the instruments used, not the creative process. As in, the lockers, doors, stools, etc. that he used are not traditional percussion instruments like the piano and marimba, and so forth, but rather adapted from the environment.

  7. that’s not a xylophone. he is playing three different keyboard percussion instruments in addition to the piano – vibraphone (the low, metallic, sustained sounding one), marimba (the low, warm sounding one), and glockenspiel (the high one that sounds like bells).

  8. You guys can blame me for saying “improvised,” though with this kind of music, the line between improvisation and composition is vague. But I think Ben did an awesome job and I wish him luck at Berklee in the fall.

    1. The author of the piece, in the credits of the video, says he composed it.

      And yes, it is an awesome video and an awesome piece of music.

      Anybody else remember Yaz Kaz?

      Perhaps the new, post professional, post tv network complexity in video/art/music that Shirky was writing about in the piece linked to on bb yesterday is not so far off.

  9. Ben, I hope you enjoy your time at Berklee. You are one good kid, and I think you’ll go far.

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