Cocopah Middle School students compose ‘Lean on me’ as emotional farewell video to 2020

Posted at 5:53 AM, Dec 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-22 22:49:36-05

In a year with so much adversity and pain, Cocopah Middle School students compose ‘lean on me’ tribute to 2020.

“I play the flute and I'm in 6th grade,” says Amelia Baum.

Over two months in the making, Cocopah middle school band, choir, percussion, and orchestra students developed a tribute to a year unlike any other in their young lifetimes.

“I hope that people find joy in knowing that somebody is trying to help the world be a better place right now and they'll smile a little bit more and they'll be happy for one more second... They'll come together to make a whole,” says Amelia Baum.

The idea came from band teacher Chuck Curry. "I thought a Bill Withers song would be nice and lean on me, perfect lyrics,” Curry said.

"I used to teach here about 25 years ago and then I came back because of the pandemic, up until a couple of months ago I was a guest entertainer on cruise ships"

Curry said the pandemic is affecting everyone in one way or another.

“I'm living with my parents and my wife and kid are still in Thailand... My mom and dad are in their 80's and I'm in my little bubble, social distanced, standing as safe as we can,” Curry said.

In-person student Greyson Searles plays the alto saxaphone.

“I think it shows that even through this is a rough time, we can still have fun and do things like this... And it's sorta empowering,” says Searles.

With nearly 150 tracks, including some students producing their parts at home and others in the classroom, 6th grade band student Anika Schmidgall said "Lean on Me" speaks volumes.

"I loved it, its so awesome! We all need somebody to lean on, so I think it's a great song choice. I really liked the song that we picked,” says Schmidgall.