DrumChattr Google Hangout 11/1/13

It has been a while since we had a “podcast” so Tom and Dave decided to sit down and talk about BookChattr 2013 and PASIC 2013. What did you think about Jeff Jarvis’ Public Parts? Are you going to PASIC? What are you looking forward to checking out?

Be sure to follow Tom (@tburritt), Dave (@dgerhart) and DrumChattr (@drumchattr) on Twitter for an announcement about a DrumChattr hang at PASIC.

Would you be interested in having more Google Hangouts? Leave comments below and let us know.


BookChattr 2013 is here!

BookChattr 2013 is here!

We are excited to announce the 3rd Annual BookChattr 2013. This year we will be Jarvis-PUBLIC-PARTS-jacketreading Jeff Jarvis’ Public Parts: How Sharing in the Digital Age Improves the Way We Work and Live. Jeff Jarvis blogs about media and news at Buzzmachine.com and is associate professor and director of the Tow-Knight Center for Entrepreneurial Journalism at the City University of New York’s Graduate School of Journalism. He is very active online and is a key contributor to TWIG (This Week in Google) on the Twit.tv Podcast Network.

Why this book? Every day at Drumchattr we encourage our readers to publicly share their views for the benefit of our community. We think we can learn from Jeff’s perspectives on the benefits of sharing publicly. He suggests that sharing and living in public on the internet doesn’t actually make us dumber, crasser, or more distracted like many privacy advocates claim. In fact, he argues quite persuasively that the internet and our new sense of publicness are, in fact, doing the opposite. We agree!

Jeff is a professor of Journalism with a focus on new media. He advocates for a free and open internet. He makes a case that the future of the internet requires protection and that access to all should be a basic human right. And, of course, we agree!

I would highly recommend that you go to Buzzmachine.com Jeff’s blog or listen to an episode of TWIG to hear Jeff talk about these important issues.

Starting July 1st, we’ll read a few chapters a week. Each week, Dave and I will be putting up summaries and discussion points for the chapters. (Please use the link above to purchase your book. If you use this link, you will help support DrumChattr.)

After we finish the book, I am happy to announce that Jeff Jarvis has agreed to do a Google Hangout with our community. We hope you can join us for this interview. This is a rare treat and I am excited for the chance to talk Jeff.

New York Philharmonic Archives

New York Philharmonic Archives

I have been working on a post for DrumChattr over the past week and I have decided to postpone it due to the discovery that one of my FaceBook friends (Andy Eldridge) made yesterday. The New York Philharmonic Archives has just made over 520,000 Pages of Parts Marked by Philharmonic Musicians available on the internet for everyone to see. (Check out the video below for more information about the project). This archive is an invaluable resource for students, scholars, and anyone interested in classical music. The archive includes programs, scores, parts, images and in the future will also feature audio and/or video.

Looking for the part to Le Sacre Du Printemps (The Rite of Spring) that were used by Leonard Bernstein? Click Here

Looking for score to Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 marked by Gustav Mahler, Bruno Walter and Leonard Bernstein? Click Here

Looking for the timpani and percussion parts to Beethoven Symphony No. 9 that were arked by Leonard Bernstein? Click Here

And the list goes on! This is a massive undertaking by the NY Phil. It would be amazing if other orchestras had the resources to do the same. We can only hope. While none of the parts are able to be printed, you can always head over to IMSLP.org to download the majority of the parts that are on the NY Phil archive.

This is an amazing resource and I hope you get lost in the archives this weekend when you have some time. Please spread the word and share this post with all of your students and music colleagues.


Let’s Hear From You

Last summer we hosted a series called BookChattr. It was DrumChattr’s Summer Book Club. We read
The Percussionist’s Art – Steven Schick, The War of Art – Steven Pressfield, and The Inner Game of Tennis – W. Timothy Gallwey. After each of the books, we did a podcast recapping the book. This year, we would like to pose the question, “Do you want to continue BookChattr this summer?”

There is a poll below. Please vote and let us know. If you are interested, please put some suggested books in the comments. One book I am very interested to read this summer is The Cello Suites: J. S. Bach, Pablo Casals, and the Search for a Baroque Masterpiece. There are also a couple of business/social media books I would like to read. We are posting this question to our community and we would love to get your feedback. It was great to interact with some of your last summer, but to really make this “work,” it would be great to get more people involved. Please vote and spread the word.

<a href="http://www.sodahead.com/fun/should-drumchattr-host-bookchattr-again-this-summer/question-2639623/" title="Should DrumChattr host BookChattr again this summer?">Should DrumChattr host BookChattr again this summer?</a>

Why Do an Indoor Drumline? (Part 2)

Why Do an Indoor Drumline? (Part 2)

Today, Jake introduces the second installment of what will be an ongoing series about indoor percussion ensembles. After reading his thoughts and ideas, please leave your comments below. Be sure to check out his blog at: JakeCummingsMusic.com

My Journey Through an Indoor Percussion Season, Part 2 – Worry Early
By Jake Cummings

This is the second installment of what will be an ongoing series about indoor percussion ensembles. It’s the first segment that deals with problems and discoveries that I’m making throughout the year. This post deals with early season issues. If you haven’t already, check out Part 1 Why Do an Indoor Drumline? Enjoy…

It’s one thing to design an indoor percussion show. More on that in a couple of later posts. A completely new set of issues arise when it comes time to implement the show. One of my groups that I’m currently teaching (and the only one where I’m the designer of the show) had their first performance this past Saturday. After our performance, I started thinking about what has worked and what hasn’t worked so far this year. This post is about what I’ve picked up along the way so far.

One of the most nerve-wracking experiences for an instructor can be the actual process of your ensemble learning the show. Here’s a couple of things that I found helped the process of putting our show together.

• When the music is handed out to students, have every note, dynamic, accent, tempo, drill set, and every other imaginable detail in place. I think this is the most important element to quick understanding for students. It’s really difficult for instructors to put in the attention to detail early on to make this possible. It requires lots of energy and the ability to for-see potential problems with your design. But, put yourself in the place of the ensemble member. Wouldn’t you want as much detail as possible as early as possible? Of course, there’s always changes that are going to be necessary. But, the less, the better. Having lots of detail early on gives the students a chance to grasp the concept of the show, think about small details, be prepared for rehearsals, and motivate them. If they see that you’re putting in extra time, they are more likely to do the same.

• Give the students ample time to learn the detailed parts that you give them. If you hand students a chart on Tuesday and say “Okay, have 60 bars of this ready to go for Thursday,” you’re probably going to be disappointed. This is especially true when dealing with high school students. Always keep in mind that the government won’t even let these kids vote yet. Their ability to quickly absorb music isn’t high. Give your kids time to learn concepts before rehearsing as a group.

• Get “big picture” ideas settled as early as possible. There’s nothing worse than the feeling of being six days before your first show and wondering if you’re floor is going to be done on time. Handle concepts like costumes, floor, music and drill design, visuals, etc., as early as you can. As in December. Making major changes to your show a week or so before your first performance not only stresses you out, but it stresses your performers out as well. This is one of the major lessons I’ve learned that I hope to carry with me as I continue in this activity. As Seth Godin would say, thrash early. Be proactive with as many big and small details as you can. With young performers, they need to be as comfortable as possible going into performances. The higher their “confusion level”, the more likely things are to go south at your show.

• Don’t overwrite. I’ve noticed one of the easiest things to do with a high school group is to write parts that are simply too difficult for them. This is very true with ensembles that are in their first couple years of doing an ensemble such as this one. As I mentioned in the idea above this one, your ensemble members need to be relaxed going into a performance. Having notes that are out of their ability range won’t do anybody any favors. Also, have a plan for cleaning the notes that you do write. Nothing is more frustrating to a student than playing poorly as a section and having an instructor in front of them simply saying “That’s dirty. Do it better.” They know when their playing is poor. Have broken down exercises and ideas on how to proactively help your students play their music in place before you even begin rehearsals.

• Remember, these groups are about education. I touched on this concept in my first post in this series, but I think it’s important enough to write about again. Be sure you are educating your students first and foremost. To me, these ensembles aren’t about scores, visual stimulation, or ego-building. They’re about education and developing a program. Write a show that will set your students up for success in the sense of education and achievement. The members of your group should feel like they played to the best of their ability and improved as individuals and an ensemble at the end of the year. Simply getting the best GE score, or even the best overall score, isn’t good enough if your students aren’t improving, growing, enjoying themselves, and learning.

What am I missing? I would love to hear from you. Leave any comments below. Thanks!

Trinidad and Tobago’s Panorama 2012 Results

The results from Trinidad and Tobago’s Panorama 2012 are in and the winners are:

Large Conventional Steel Orchestras
1st Place: Trinidad All Stars (279)
2nd Place: Phase II Pan Groove (274)
3rd Place: Silver Stars (271)
4th Place: Renegades (267)
5th Place: Harmonites & Exodus (263)
7th Place: Invaders (262)
8th Place: Redemption Sound Setters & Fonclaire (258)
10th Place: Tropical Angel Harps (254)
11th Place: Siparia Deltones (249)

Medium Conventional Steel Orchestras
1st Place: Katzenjammers (288)
2nd Place: Buccooneers (284)
3rd Place: Sound Specialists of Laventille (279)
4th Place: Valley Harps (277)
5th Place: Melodians (273)
6th Place: Curepe Scherzando & Pamberi (271)
8th Place: Power Stars (268)
9th Place: West Side Symphony (267)
10th Place: Sangre Grande Cordettes (261)

Small Conventional Steel Orchestras
1st Place: Arima Golden Symphony (277.5)
2nd Place: Supernovas (274)
2rd Place: La Horquetta Pan Groove (274)

Congratulations to Trinidad All Stars (2 years in a row) in the Large Steelband category. The videos have already been posted on YouTube and you can check them out below.

Neal Massey Trinidad All-Stars performing “Play Yourself”

Katzenjammers performing “This Is Bacchanal”

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