Long before Jack Black starred in the 2003 movie School of Rock, the Blue Bear School of Music in San Francisco was teaching rock, pop, and blues to young students. Now, the “original school of rock” is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a performance of the David Bowie classic “Suffragette City” by Black and the current Blue Bear teen student band.
Founded in 1971, the Blue Bear School of Music has welcomed roughly 40,000 students over its 50-year history. The nonprofit organization offers both paid and free classes for aspiring musicians of all ages.
“A good friend of mine (Paul Cummins) told me about Blue Bear and the incredible work they’ve been doing,” said Black. “I jumped at the chance to celebrate their 50th anniversary by jamming some Bowie with their teen all-star band. So fun. What an honor. They’ve been teaching kids to rock since 1971! I love Blue Bear…the original school of rock!!!”
In addition to the performance of the Bowie classic, Blue Bear School of Music is hosting a fundraising rock auction, launching November 16th. Up for bid are tickets to Metallica’s upcoming 40th anniversary shows at San Francisco’s Chase Center in December, as well as ticket to see Primus, Steve Earle, and more. There’s also signed memorabilia from Eddie Vedder and other artists.
The video of Jack Black performing “Suffragette City” with the Blue Bear teen band can be seen below, along with a 50-year celebration clip.
Black and his musical partner Kyle Gass recently caught up with Heavy Consequence to discuss all things Tenacious D. That video interview can also be seen below.