It’s All About How You Spend Your Time

For most of us in the college ranks, school has started or starts soon. In 2013, Dr. Carolyn Bremer wrote an email that she sent out to the students in the Bob Cole Conservatory. Below is the email she sent out (posted with her permission). Some of it is specific to to the BCCM, but a lot of it is applicable to music students everywhere. Have a great year and please add your thoughts below.

It’s All About How You Spend Your Time
By Dr. Carolyn Bremer

One of the most difficult aspects of life as a music major is managing your time. We put a lot of demands on you in ensembles, academics, lessons, classes outside of music, concert attendance, and learning from your peers. The theme of this little tome is:

It’s All About How You Spend Your Time

Here is a list of suggestions for how to survive school, do well, and be happy. (more…)

So You’re Going to be a Percussion Major…

By Adam Groh

It’s August, and that means we’re on the threshold of a brand new school year.  For the first time in 22 years, I am going to be walking onto campus as a full-time teacher, rather than a student.  Perhaps it was a bit of nostalgia that inspired this post, but I wanted to make a list of fifteen things I’d want a brand new freshmen percussion major to know and hear as they prepare to start school.  Some of these are things that I did, and I am thankful for, and others are things that I never thought of, and I’m hoping that you can learn from my mistakes.  Even if you’re not a freshmen, hopefully this list can offer some good suggestions of how to make the most of your academic experience! (more…)


“People aren’t owed jobs because of (possibly bogus) qualifications or credentials; they get jobs because they can do something valuable for someone else.”

This mindset is sometimes lost in the percussion community. Degrees (especially performance ones) won’t actually get you anything in the real world. The skills and assets that you acquire while obtaining your degree can be of great value to you if applied in the right way. But, the piece of paper itself, not so much.

This article sums up these ideas rather nicely. As everybody heads back to school, make sure to ask yourself “What skills am I picking up here?” and “How will I apply these skills in the real world?” and “Are these skills going to be able to make me a living?”


Originally posted on DrumChattr on August 17, 2013.


It’s almost back to school time, so I’ll share something on education today. I don’t know any truly professional percussionist who isn’t in the world of education in some form. It doesn’t matter if you are a full time teacher, independent contractor, freelancer, blogger or whatever. The vast majority of percussionists teach somewhere in the professional lives. Even people who strictly perform/play for a living most likely have somebody studying a Youtube video of them somewhere. So, they’re teachers. (more…)

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