South African education is currently in a process of restructuring, stemming from radical political changes in 1994. In 1995 a system of outcomes-based education was adopted by the Department of Education, strategically supported by the South African Qualifications Authority with its twelve relevant National Standards Bodies. Together with this, a system of unit standards, based on the accreditation of credits, learning programmes and qualifications is in a process of development. Music as formal school subject does not enjoy the same financial support from the Education Department as do the so-called "essential" subjects such as Mathematics and Science. Therefore no formal structures to generate unit standards for Music were origmally planned and budgeted for by educational authorities. To fill this need, and to prevent the marginalisation of such an important subject, the MEUSSA (Music Education Unit Standards for Southern Africa) project was initiated by the Music Department of the University of Pretoria early in 2000, involving 18 Master's and doctoral students in various areas of musical expertise. The aim is to generate unit standards for Music(s) in Southern Africa across traditional aspects such as instrumental training, harmony, history, theory and aural training, as well as the relatively unexplored domains of Music Technology, World Musics and Popular Music. Cultural shifts over the last approximately forty years began reshaping the understanding of the world we are' living in, resulting in a transition from a modern to a postmodern culture in Western societies. For the project of writing unit standards for music to be relevant, it was necessary to reflect on these changes and to accommodate them in music education. Frameworks and standards generated in the USA, Australia, New Zealand and England were also investigated and contextualised. Because the field of expertise of the author lies, inter alia, in the field of Aerophones, unit standards were specifically generated for music performance. These standards have to be considered as part of the MEUSSA project, and therefore be read in conjunction with contributions by other members of this team. It is the wish of the author, as part of the MEUSSA team, that this study will contribute towards making music education of high quality available to every learner in Southern Africa.