The Isley Brothers and Carlos Santana effortlessly merge their sounds on their collaborative new album, Power Of Peace. This combination of a legendary vocal-based group and one of history’s most fiery guitar players is straight off any audiophile’s wishlist. While projects combining such long-standing musical forces sometimes fail due to issues with vision and ego, that is surely not the case here. It’s possible that Santana’s prior successes on the charts with a variety of diverse artists have helped hone him into a fearless wandering gun. However, Power Of Peace truly seems as though it’s the result of two musical families coming together.Celebrate Carlos Santana’s 70th Birthday With His Phil Lesh & Friends At LOCKN’ [Pro-Shot]Founding member Ronald and younger brother Ernie Isley have been making music together for decades, and their bond is bordering telepathic. While Carlos Santana and his wife, Cindy Blackman, haven’t been together nearly as long, the two certainly seem to operate on the same wavelength. While the Isley Brothers helped fuse rock, soul, and funk into a chart-topping sound, Carlos Santana was wowing future collaborator Ernie Isley at Woodstock.Nigel Hall Releases Catchy Isley Brothers Cover With QuestloveAny worries about the Power Of Peace conceptually are alleviated on the pace-setting opening track, “Are You Ready.” Blackman sets an aggressive tone for Ron Isley‘s impassioned rendition of the question at hand. The mix of guitars is quite obviously strong in Santana’s direction, though Ernie does sneak some licks in while holding down tight rhythm work. Check out that track and the rest of the album in the video link below, then check out our continued thoughts on the project below.As always, any note played by Santana demands attention, but his style is clean enough to allow Ron Isley plenty of room. The covers from Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, The Chambers Brothers and other all-star creators give the core band and their cast of collaborators plenty of opportunities to do what they do best. The familiarity of the material on the album also sets the table for a follow-up collaboration with new original material—Santana has been open about the fact he’s been composing.Closing Power Of Peace with a lengthy rendition of Billie Holiday‘s “God Bless The Child” allows each creative voice a chance to shine one last time. Like previous tracks, the tempo build and the crescendo are straight out of both artists’ playbooks and strike a chord deep in the psyches of longtime fans and fresh ears alike. The harmony of these artists comes as much from their shared attitudes on life as their musical passions. Their like-minded views on the power of love and transcending to higher states meld so easily that it would be a crime if this is last we hear from these legends.
Are there lessons for leading a classroom in professional football? Plenty, according to experts on a Harvard panel, who among other things suggested educators should study the team dynamics of the National Football League (NFL).“If one person blows their assignment, the game is shot. It very much relates to the relationship between teacher and student, and between teacher and teacher . . . [everyone] is dependent on one another’s success,” said Domonique Foxworth, president of the NFL Players Association and former cornerback with the Baltimore Ravens, who urged school administrators to consider the creation of teaching teams.A team-oriented approach to teaching, one that encourages educators to think about the success of a student well beyond the year they spend in a particular classroom, is a vital part of education, agreed panelist Tim Daly, president of the education nonprofit TNTP, which addresses issues of teacher quality.“Teachers who take that long view” are critically important, he said. “It’s the kind of thing that doesn’t get talked about.”“Welcome to Monday Night Football,” said Harvard Graduate School of Education Dean Kathleen McCartney to the crowd at Longfellow Hall on April 2, introducing members of the NFL and the education sector who took part in the Askwith Forum.The idea for the event took shape last year, said moderator Andy Rotherham, co-founder of Bellwether Education Partners and education columnist for Time magazine, when his editor asked him to develop a column around the Super Bowl. He did, and in the process realized there was much more to say.One important method of NFL coaching that can be applied to teaching is the use of video to assess player performance. Experts agree that most teachers receive inadequate feedback on the work they do, with evaluations often consisting of a visit from a principal for a few minutes each year. Not so in the NFL, where obsessive analysis of videotaped training sessions and games are vital to helping players and coaches understand what they do well and what they need help with, said Brendan Daly, defensive line coach for the Minnesota Vikings and brother of Tim.For Foxworth, studying film was the key to his longevity with the league. “I was successful because the plays that I made were all cerebral; they were plays that I prepared for,” he said. “I recognized they were coming, I saw the keys, and in a split second I was able to make that decision.”While NFL teams rely on video to improve performance, the majority of the 3.2 million public school teachers in the country have little or no access to video footage of excellent teaching being done by their peers, or of their own teaching, said Tim Daly. “It strikes me that there is a total lack of infrastructure in education,” for this kind of feedback.“If we want people to be excellent practitioners in the classroom and we want them to know what they are doing,” he said, “we have to invest more in helping them learn these techniques.”Athleticism is certainly a factor in evaluating talent, but what sets a player apart is his ability to study and learn the game, said Brendan Daly, who is also a former teacher.We ask ourselves “what is his ability to learn, what is his demeanor toward learning … how is he going to learn, absorb, and understand the game,” he said. “That, in my personal opinion, is the difference between the guys who make it and the guys who don’t.”The main “nuts and bolts” of teaching is very similar, agreed his brother. “It’s how you prepare for class; it’s how you respond to things when they go wrong. It’s how you learn from your mistakes, and how capable you are of changing.”He compared a complicated play on the football field to everything that happens in one class.“A good teacher can tell you all those individual decisions that they are making and why.”Like the building blocks in education that take a student from learning the letters of the alphabet to forming words and eventually reading a book, football players have to master the fundamentals before moving on to advanced techniques and complicated plays, said Brendan Daly.“The important thing is to believe in the fundamentals and work toward mastering them.”
Iseman: Syracuse can’t be counted out yet after displaying resolve in comeback win against South Florida
Facebook Twitter Google+ TAMPA, Fla. — Doug Marrone stood outside Syracuse’s locker room at Raymond James Stadium wearing a gray T-shirt and drinking an orange Gatorade as beads of sweat dripped down his forehead. The blue sweater and white turtleneck he wore during the game were gone, both too much for the SU head coach to wear in the muggy stadium tunnel.He had just coached the Orange’s most intense and dramatic game of the season — a come-from-behind 37-36 victory for Syracuse on the road against a South Florida team that always had the Orange’s number.SU put its resolve on display in the second half, making a valiant comeback before losing the lead, only to get it back again — for good — in a near-miraculous comeback. The Orange’s season also took on a much different tone.“I feel like this could turn it around. This is a huge win like this against a great team,” said wide receiver Alec Lemon, who caught the game-winning touchdown pass.Syracuse came into the game off a 30-point win over a struggling Connecticut team. Then, in the first half of Saturday night’s game, the Orange looked nothing like the team that blew the Huskies out of the Carrier Dome a week ago.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThere were dropped passes and potential interceptions that could’ve easily been caught. A missed 22-yard field goal. Five penalties for a loss of 50 yards. All of this against the Bulls, who were winless in three conference games and had lost 10 of their last 11 games.After the opening two quarters, Syracuse’s chances at a win looked bleak, if not almost nonexistent. B.J. Daniels was running all over the Orange defense, and a USF defense that ranks last in the Big East was putting up its best effort of the season to hold SU to a mere three points at halftime.That’s when Marrone had to rally his team together with a halftime speech. He said afterward that screaming and yelling wouldn’t do anything. He had to get his players to believe they could still win despite how the first half went.“Hopefully we learned from it, we’re going to come out here, we’re going to get the ball first. I’m not going to say we need to go right down the field and score, but whatever happens, happens,” Marrone said he told his team. “The defense will get us right back on the field and bail us out; if not, special teams will bail us out and three units need to work together.”That’s exactly what ended up happening.The win evened the Orange’s record at 4-4. It’s been an up-and-down year for Syracuse, and the season is still hinging between a success and another year without a postseason appearance.But on Saturday, the Orange showed a resolve it hadn’t shown so far this season.While the players spoke about their belief in the team during the year, it seemed as if that optimism stemmed more from hope than reality. Turnovers plagued the team all season.And then on Saturday, Syracuse had to put its hope and belief to the test. After Marrone’s halftime speech, the Orange put together the program’s biggest comeback win on record, dating back to 1942.All of a sudden, it seems SU has a new season. It now sits two wins away from a bowl berth. The road ahead is still a difficult one for Syracuse. Of its final four games, three are on the road.The win over the Bulls proved the Orange can’t be counted out quite yet. Syracuse showed it can execute when the pressure is at its peak, and for SU, that’ll be the situation until the end of the year.After Saturday night, Syracuse’s season took on a much different appearance.“We learned how important it was to finish and what it takes to play a full 60 minutes and realize it’s never over,” quarterback Ryan Nassib said. “You’ve got to keep fighting. We can always come back.”Chris Iseman is an asst. sports editor at The Daily Orange where his column appears occasionally. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @chris_iseman. Comments Related Stories UNBELIEVABLE: Syracuse completes 2nd-half comeback with late scoring drive to shock South FloridaSyracuse defense struggles to contain South Florida’s Daniels in victoryEskridge’s blocked punt spurs Syracuse comeback; Offense continues to struggle in the red zone Published on October 29, 2012 at 2:57 am