What started as a class project for a graduate history class at the University of North Florida has evolved into a clever One Spark project. Co-creators Josh Salestrom, Bryan Higham and Tony Rossodivito are the guys behind Jacksonville Music History Tour Smartphone App, a smartphone application to direct users on a tour detailing Jacksonville’s musical heritage.
“The sites included represent a period that ranges from the early 20th century until the late 1970s,” Salestrom said. “It will feature such notable names as James Weldon Johnson, his brother John Rosamond Johnson, Ray Charles, Woody Guthrie, The Beatles and Lynyrd Skynyrd, among others.”
Salestrom, Higham and Rossodivito have enlisted the help of some local organizations for research assistance.
“We’ve been working closely with the staff at the Ritz Theatre & Museum, who have been incredibly helpful and supportive in helping learn more about the area,” Salestrom said. “The Stetson Kennedy Foundation has aided with the Woody Guthrie aspect as well.”
Throughout their research, the trio found that the area’s music history isn’t confined to a single genre.
“There are important sites that represent everything from social anthems to folk music to rock ’n’ roll,” Salestrom said. “By highlighting these aspects, we hope to reconnect Jacksonville to its musical heritage."