“As One” by Gene Koshinski

Multiple percussion duo scored for 5.0 octave marimba, 2 sets of bongos, 2 congas, 2 toms, 1 concert bass drum, and 2 splash cymbals. Both performers have identical set-ups and work “as one” by complementing each other with complex hocketed music played on marimba (shared: one player on each side) and multiple percussion.

Sound clip performers: Gene Koshinski and Tim Broscious.

While this is one of my favorite percussion duo pieces, “Dance of the Drums” is a close second!

PASIC 2012: Steel Band Literature

This video features the live performance from PASIC 2012 (November 3, 2012). The session was called “Steel Band Literature: Standards, New Directions, Styles and Sources” and was directed Tony McCutchen (Jacksonville State University), Dave Gerhart (CSU, Long Beach) and C. J. Menge (Inside Out Steel Band). The performance featured over 60 faculty members from the US performing new literature for steel band.

If you are a percussionist, you should be a member of Percussive Arts Society and attend the yearly convention Percussive Arts Society International Convention (PASIC). Thanks to Joshua Simonds, Executive Director of PAS, for allowing this video to be posted.

Program
Trini Yellowtail – Adam Mason
Very Much (A Lot) – Joshua Garrett
Spin Cycle – Brad Shores
PanSon – Dave Gerhart (more…)

“Circuit Breaker” by Gene Koshinski

Performed by Quey Percussion Duo (Gene Koshinski and Tim Broscious) with the University of Minnesota Duluth Graduate Percussion Ensemble (Jordan Holley, Jody Morgan, Doug Quance, and Michael Taylor)

Program Notes
Circuit Breaker, scored for percussion sextet, functions as a concertino for percussion duo with percussion quartet accompaniment. While there is no set program, the impetus for the piece came from images of robots dancing. Initially, I was intrigued by a video of twenty synchronized “Noa” robots dancing in perfect unison, but the aesthetic of the music did not seem to fit the visual image. This posed the question, “What kind of music would a robot dance to?” This question conjured up a variety of ideas and sounds from mechanical and industrial to unusual and whimsical. Circuit Breaker takes the listener through a series of musical scenes that offer a response to this abstract question. (more…)

How to practice effectively…for just about anything

As a performing artist, we are always looking for new ways to improve and refine our craft. There are stumbling blocks along the path to mastery and for a lot of people, myself included, it happens in the practice room. A friend of mine from grad school, Annie Bosler, shared this video she created with along Don Greene for TedEd. Check out the video and then follow this link for the full lesson.

Congrats Annie and Don!

Don has also written a couple of great books on performance success and audition success. Be sure to check them out.

Raynor Carroll Retirement

On September 4, 2016, principal percussionist Raynor Carroll retired from the Los Angeles Philharmonic. After serving the orchestra for 33-years and playing countless concerts, he has decided to step down and continue directing the percussion program at UCLA. I was fortunate to take private lessons with Raynor from 1995 – 1998 while I was in the American Youth Symphony. I still remember my first phone call and lesson. Raynor changed the way that I approached timpani and percussion. Years later, I had the opportunity to teach with him at the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music at CSULB and I will always be indebted to him for everything he taught me over the past 20 years. (more…)

“Blindnesses” by Isaac Schankler

Performed by Third Coast Percussion
Sean Connors, Robert Dillon, Peter Martin, David Skidmore

Blindnesses is scored for four percussionists— sharing one vibraphone— and electronic sound processing. The electronic component of the piece at times adds a cavernous artificial resonance to the sound, while at other times, it plays back distorted fragments of music performed by the live musicians earlier in the piece. The four percussionists- whose movements must be meticulously choreographed to perform together on a single instrument- create their own stark sonic contrasts with a variety of mallets and acoustic pitch bending effects. (more…)

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