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Grapevine Elementary Music Program gets Boost from Sound Start Foundation and VH1 ‘Save the Music’

Vista CA Sound Start, a Sound United foundation dedicated to donating musical instruments to underprivileged children worldwide, alongside VH1 Save The Music Foundation (STM,)  celebrated the arrival of new musical instruments at Grapevine Elementary School, in Vista. The contribution was made possible by a generous donation of an Intro to Music Grant from the Sound Start foundation.

Grapevine Elementary School Principal Rafael Olavide learns a new song

Grapevine Elementary is the first school in the Vista Unified School District to receive an Intro to Music Grant from STM as they embark on a comprehensive rebuild of music education in Vista. In partnership with the the district, STM will serve schools that demonstrate need and are committed to providing music education for every student, taught by a full-time credentialed music teacher.

“We know that our students and our community will benefit from this program because it will enrich their lives,” said Grapevine Elementary School Principal, Rafael Olavide. “We could not have done this without the support of Sound Start Foundation and VH1 ‘Save the Music’ and we are grateful they brought this to our school. They know that music must be an integral part of a child’s instructional day.”

Jaclyn Rudderrow with the VH1 Save the Music Foundation

VH1 Save The Music Foundation, Inc. is a New York 501(c)(3) nonprofit that helps kids, schools, and communities realize their full potential through the power of making music. Founded in 1997, VH1 Save The Music was the first organization in existence dedicated to restoring music programs. The Foundation has donated $57 million worth of new musical instruments over the past 21 years to more than 2,100 public schools in 261 school districts around the country – impacting the lives of millions of public school students. “To hear that the Vista Unified School District is looking at ways to increase their music programs just gives me the chills. It’s music to my ears,” said Jaclyn Rudderrow with the VH1 Save the Music Foundation.

In 2018, Sound United launched the Sound Start foundation, with an ambitious goal to donate 10,000 instruments to children worldwide by the 2020-2021 school year.


In support of this exciting goal, Sound United, a Vista based company, pledged a percentage of Denon, Polk Audio and Definitive Technology sales to the Sound Start foundation to benefit VH1 Save The Music’s work to help students, schools and communities realize their full potential through the power of making music.

Sound United CEO, Kevin Duffy

Sound United CEO, Kevin Duffy told the students that his love for music began when he was six-years-old and his grandfather gave him a trumpet. “My grandfather played in a jazz band while he was in the Army. He gave me a tiny trumpet and made me call him every night and practice for him. I was one of the lucky ones.” He told the students that there are more than 5 million students who don’t have instruments. “Music taught me discipline, it helped me in math, it taught me you that you have to practice to get good at anything and we just don’t think it’s fair the there are 5 million kids out there who don’t have access to instruments.”

Sound United is a division of DEI Holdings with an award-winning portfolio of audio brands that deliver industry-leading home theatre and personal audio listening experiences for a wide-range of consumers. Each brand provides an expansive array of audio products that includes high-end and custom installation audio, to mid-tier markets that cover loudspeakers, sound bars, AV receivers, wireless multi-room music systems, Bluetooth® speakers, amplifiers, turntables and headphones.

VUSD Superintendent, Dr. Linda Kimble plays music with Grapevine students

In the first few months of this partnership, the Sound Start foundation and VH1 Save The Music delivered targeted services and instruments to seven schools across the country, impacting schools in the Anaheim Elementary School District, CA, Chula Vista Elementary School District, CA, Vista Unified School District, CA and Paterson Public Schools, NJ. By fall 2019, the two organizations will reach 19 more schools, demonstrating the shared commitment to delivering 10,000 instruments to public school students by the 2020-2021 school year.

Vista Unified School District is a Transition Kindergarten thru Grade 12 district. We are one of northern San Diego County’s largest educational agencies. Our district stretches 39 square miles, has 29 schools, and serves more than 20,000 students.

For more information on the VUSD visit www.vistausd.org.