What does it mean to be a "music city" in western Wisconsin? What sort of musical traditions, sounds, spaces, events, and people contribute to the formation of such a regional identity? How did Eau Claire and the Chippewa Valley become such a place? We hope that the Sounds of Eau Claire project offers some answers to these questions, offering visitors and community members a bit of perspective on local music history.

Begun in 2017, the Sounds of Eau Claire is a public history initiative studying the roots and dimensions of the current musical moment in Eau Claire and the larger Chippewa Valley region. Working with community members through oral history interviews and public curation events, project stakeholders and UWEC student facilitators aspire to preserve a digital collection of local music history that inclusively recognizes the broad and diverse scope of music ways in the region today.

The Sounds of Eau Claire project is a collaboration among the University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire, the Chippewa Valley Museum, and BluGold Radio. The project is primarily facilitated by University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire students seeking to enhance their education through hands-on and collaborative experience in public history coursework.

The project has received generous support from the National Endowment for the Humanities: Common Heritage Program and from the Wisconsin Humanities Council. Any views, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The Wisconsin Humanities Council supports and creates programs that use history, culture, and discussion to strengthen community life for everyone in Wisconsin.

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