ICYMI: Sonoma County Juvenile Hall opens new music studio


From Sonoma County 

SANTA ROSA, CA | March 04, 2024

Sonoma County’s Juvenile Hall has opened a new music recording studio with the goal of promoting self-expression, positivity and wellness among youth detained at the facility with the assistance of local music professionals.

The studio includes industry-standard microphones and recording software as well as three acoustic/electric guitars, one electric guitar, several keyboards, one electric bass and an electronic drum set. Future plans include wind and brass instruments.

“Music is an outlet for expression and emotions,” said Daniel Flamson, a division director with the Sonoma County Probation Department. “It provides an educational opportunity and introduction into the world of music, and it helps push the creative boundaries that our residents occasionally impose on themselves when they are housed in a detention facility and somewhat afraid to come out of their shells or show vulnerability. More importantly, it’s something they want to do.”

Juvenile Hall residents who express interest in the program are put on a roster and are assigned studio time. The program roster is incentive-based and a motivation for youth within the facility. Several youth have already used the studio, and two have recorded songs since the studio opened.

The studio was named Free Voices, following a facility-wide naming contest. The Probation Department is working with a local music professional as a consultant, who is making connections with the residents and assisting in the creation of unique music.

The department is also seeking other industry professionals or community members who would like to volunteer and work with the program and the juvenile population.