Give Music Inc. was incorporated in March of 1998 under the name Generating Tomorrow’s Future Today Inc. (GTFT). The name was changed to Give Music Inc. in 2016. Give Music arose from a vision of intense artistic/technology centers (tech centers) where young people could develop and express themselves openly. Give Music’s founders, Michael Grant and Arianna Wilson, created the first version of the tech center using their own equipment and talents. In November of 1998, they enlisted the sponsorship of the Springfield South West Community Health Center (Now Caring Health Center). Together with SSCHC, Give Music obtained two consultant/rent grants totaling $20,000. The monies were allocated towards paying rent and a consultant for one year while Give Music worked on obtaining its 501 (c) 3.
In May of 1999, Give Music moved into its own office space in the Board of Trade building in downtown Springfield and began its first program Abducted Records. From May 1999 until September of 1999 more than 80 young people signed up for the program. Give Music received its 501c 3 status in June of 2000 and immediately began a media campaign. As a result, Give Music gained the attention of Tommy Goodrow, Director of the Springfield Technical Community College's Entrepreneurial Institute. Mr. Goodrow offered Give Music the opportunity to become tenants in the Student Incubator at the Institute. Accepting his offer, Give Music was provided with a small office located in the STCC Technology Park, a fax machine, copier and high-speed Internet access. STCC also offered valuable business support, including management training, workshops, and business plan preparation.
In March of 2001, Give Music was able to move into a larger space in the Board of Trade Block and expand its services to more participants. They ran 7 full time programs. In addition, Give Music conducted intensive training workshops during school vacation periods and monthly workshops in Career Enrichment that were open to the public.
In the fall of 2001, Give Music garnered much public attention, with feature articles in the Springfield Union News and the Sunday Republican and highlight segments on WTIC FOX 61 News in Hartford, CT. In November, Give Music held its first annual Give Music Future Awards at the Hippodrome Nightclub and Event Theatre in downtown Springfield, MA. This event, modeled after the Grammy's, was a black-tie gala that honored local artists and individuals who had supported and nurtured the arts in various ways.
From 1998 until 2002, Give Music successfully enrolled well over a hundred participants and engaged close to 500 youth in Give Music sponsored events. The expected growth chart for Give Music included a 25% cumulative increase in youth participation from each subsequent program cycle. Associates who successfully completed and graduated from programs acted as mentors to the incoming participants. In this manner, Give Music was able to increase both its support teams and the numbers of youth affected through its programs.
Give Music’s defining landmark occurred in June 2002. Participants put all of their learning into practice, and founded their own production and recording company. Expect the Unexpected Records (ETU) was the first for-profit result from Give Music’s efforts. Give Music housed ETU while it was still in its fledgling stage and supported its financial growth and business development.
In 2003, Give Music lost its state funding due to a major funding cut within the Romney administration. These cuts led to matching grants also being cut. Not being able to afford it’s operations, Give Music closed its doors. In 2006 our federal nonprofit status was revoked due to not filing our 990 forms. In 2016 we revived the organization, renamed it Give Music and applied successfully for reinstatement of our non profit status. Give Music is now a 501c3 organization once again.
On September 11, 2016 Give Music held its first outdoor community concert event. Faith Festival https://www.facebook.com/faithfestivalusa/ was created to help businesses and individuals celebrate their faith as well as a day to remember those lost on 911. Faith Festival was also held in 2017 in conjunction with Jamfest. Both events brought over 2000 spectators.
In September of 2019 Give Music held The Summer of Salsa at the MassMutual Center in downtown Springfield Ma. The event sold over 1000 tickets and was the first Salsa concert in Springfield in over 10 years. The headlining artist was the grammy award winning El Gran Combo De Puerto Rico.