Play It From the Heart

by Dr. J. Steven Moore

It’s finally here! A book that celebrates the benefits of participating in music.

Former students often thank their music teachers for what they were taught about music and about life. This book is a celebration of those lessons.

Play It From the Heart: What You Learn From Music About Success in Life, by Dr. J. Steven Moore, uses stories and concepts from music education as models for success. Making music together requires exceptional cooperation, and ensembles are the ultimate cooperative organizations. Dr. Moore relates what he and his students have learned about excellence, leadership, responsibility, cooperation, and passion from being in the band. Calling on personal experience, student feedback, and resources ranging from Tim Lautzenheiser to Mahatma Gandhi, Moore shares the lessons of playing from the heart.

Find Play It From the Heart in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle on and Barnes and Noble.

PLUS click here to listen to the author’s interview with the co-hosts of the Marching Round Table podcast.

What Others are Saying

Here’s what other leaders in the field are saying about Play It From the Heart:

“An amazing look at how we all learn and grow as human beings through the wonderful life experience of participating in music-particularly bands. This book-by a master educator, musician, conductor and mentor-is a must read for those who love people and aspire to give more of themselves to others through music.”-James Curnow, composer, conductor, and music educator

“Steven Moore’s Play It from the Heart rang so many bells for me. It’s stories brought to mind many students and experiences from my career, all while bringing real lessons on how to live, teach, and be successful. A very engaging book, it will certainly be of great value for music teachers, but it does not stop there. Play It from the Heart reaches out with heartfelt messages to everyone concerned with excellence, success, leadership, and teamwork. The power of the experience of playing in a band (especially a great one), has long been known those those who have experienced it. Now, folks without that great experience have a chance to see the power of ensemble performance and to see how the dynamic lessons learned there can be applied to other areas of work and life.”-Greg Bimm, director of bands, Marian Catholic High School, Illinois

Play it from the Heart is a significant resource for music educators and music majors because it is a unique approach to the thought processes about the importance of music in everyone’s lives-whether they teach it, perform it, or simply love it. It intensifies the intrinsic passion for the desire to make a difference in the lives of our students and makes us reflect upon the rewards that will follow.”-Gary E. Smith, president, Smith Walbridge Clinics

“Steven Moore’s book Play it from the Heart is a must read for every band director. It is a journey through life experiences as a musician and band director. ‘Enlightening,’ ‘sensitive,’ and ‘inspiring’ best describe this important contribution to our profession. I truly enjoyed the beautiful journey that Steve has documented…Read it!!”-Edward S. Lisk, clinician, conductor, author

“The emotional energy infused into any performance becomes the life blood of true music making. This book is a must read for not only young educators but even we stayed veterans who must never forget this important aspect of musical fulfillment. There is no substitute for diligence, desire and heartfelt passion for producing outstanding achievement. This publication contains helpful and practical commentary on the impact that Play it from the Heart can bring to students and teachers alike.”-Ray E. Cramer, professor emeritus, Indiana University

Play it from the Heart captures the true spirit of the gift of music. It is something that every administrator, school board member and parent should read and a book that every teacher of music will love. This is a book that needed to be written, and Steven Moore does it with humor, compassion, and a keen insight into the world of music and music-making.”-Paula A. Crider, president, The American Bandmasters Association

How to Order

Grab your copy today! Order a personal copy and place an order for your school library. Available in hardcover, paperback, and Kindle edition from the following retailers:

About the Author

J. Steven Moore is the Associate Dean of Undergraduate Studies at the University of Miami Frost School of Music. He recently served as Chair of the Department of Music at the University of Central Missouri where he taught conducting, music education, and conducted the Symphonic Band. Moore is a strong advocate for music literacy and has developed nationally recognized programs of excellence at the secondary and collegiate level. He has served as a music conductor at Colorado State University, University of Kentucky, Central Kentucky Youth Orchestras, and Lafayette H.S. in Lexington, Kentucky. Dr. Moore has developed digital books, movies, and training materials for music educators that are available at Contact Dr. Moore at