What Carol is This?

“What Carol is This?” is a medley of “What Child is This” and “Carol of the Bells” for steel drum ensemble. This performance took place on Sunday, December 3, 2017 Lakewood (CA) 1st Methodist Church.

Performers:
Kristen Harper, Dave Gerhart – Lead Pan
Ross Harper – Double Tenor
Dave Beery – Double Seconds
Cynthia Perez Gerhart – Triple Guitars
Jackie Beery – 6 Bass

Hired Goons by Eric Martin

Percussionist, Eric Martin, regularly posts videos on YouTube. This is a recent tune called “Hired Goons”. According to the description on YouTube, “this tune was untitled during the whole recording process, then this phrase popped in my head when I was editing the video. Instruments used: tambourine, rebolo, compact conga, cajon, egg shakers, cowbell, vibraphone, MalletKat, and Alesis V49”

Written, performed, recorded, mixed, mastered, filmed, and edited by Eric Martin.

Mitchell Peters (1935-2017)

I was saddened to hear the news that Mitchell Peters passed away this weekend. While I never met him, I have played and taught out of his books for over 20 years. He was a great educator and performer and he will be missed.

I don’t think it is a stretch to say that every percussionist in the United States has played something that Mitchell Peter’s wrote. He composed well known marimba solos such as Waves, Yellow After the Rain and Sea Refractions. He wrote many method books including Intermediate Snare Drum Etudes, Developing Dexterity and Fundamental Method for Mallets. He also wrote chamber and percussion ensemble works such as A la nañigo, Sonata-Allegro and Study in 5/8. These are just a few of the many works he wrote for percussion.

Rest in Peace Mr. Peters.

Asalatholic Freestyle (Ghanaian Shaker)

Many years ago, I was introduced to the Aslatua. According to DjembeDirect.com, “the aslatua (ah-SLAH-too-uh) is a unique hand percussion toy that will capture your attention with its tricky polyrhythm. This simple instrument (also known as aslato, kashaka, cascas, televi, kasso-kassoni, and more) is played by holding one gourd in the palm while simultaneously shaking and swinging the second gourd. The gourds come from the Swawa tree in West Africa, which are dried, hollowed, filled with pebbles, and connected with a string. You’ll have hours of fun playing with this traditional African instrument.”

The first video (above) is a great freelance video of the Aslatua. If you are interested in learning how to play the aslatua, check out the instructional video below.

Percussion Education Reads 10/24/17

It has been a while since I posted a Percussion Education Reads. The past couple of months have been crazy and I hope to be more regular about my posts on PE.com. It is hard to believe that we are 61 days away Christmas, 15 days until PASIC, about 6 weeks left in the semester and only 3 more games until the Dodgers win the World Series. Time is flying and before we know it, it will be 2018. Here are some of the posts I have been reading in the past couple of weeks. Please share your favorites in the comments below.
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80s Snare Drum Sound Explained

Do you listen to 80s music? The 80s music channel is my favorite on Pandora. Growing up in the 80s and learning how to play drum set to Huey Lewis and News, I always wondered how to tune my snare drum the way I heard on recordings. This video explains how gated reverb became the iconic 80s snare drum sound.

For some audio examples of gated reverb, check out this Spotify playlist that Vox.com compiled.

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