Percussion Paints Pictures

Percussion Paints Pictures

Over the past 17 years, I have been a member of the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra Percussion Ensemble. During this time, we have performed over 400 shows for the 2nd and 3rd graders in the Long Beach Unified School District. The LBSO commissioned Lynda Sue Marks  to write the show entitled Percussion Paints Pictures. The current ensemble is Lynda Sue Marks and Gary Long (percussion) with Jamieson Price. This show is one of the highlights of my year. Watching the 2nd and 3rd grade kids reaction to the music is priceless and I can’t wait for my kids to see the show...
Snare Drum Warm-Up Part 2

Snare Drum Warm-Up Part 2

In September, I shared my updated snare drum warm-up. It was my hope to start the conversation about creating a unified warm-up that hit all the basic building blocks on snare drum in a 10-15 minutes. I would love to hear if anyone has been using it and if it has worked. I found over the past 6 months, that it has helped me focus and prepare for my practice session along with getting me warm. I also feel that while I enjoy using the warm-up I needed a metronome to keep me honest and continue to push me. So, I decided to program my metronome with the different lines so I...
Long Beach Symphony Kids Concerts

Long Beach Symphony Kids Concerts

On January 22 and 23, 2014, I was fortunate to perform the Long Beach Symphony Orchestra’s Symphony Concerts for Young People at the Terrace Theater. The program, entitled “An English Exhibition,” included: Star Spangled Banner, Trumpet Voluntary, Pomp and Circumstance No. 1, Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra, Mars (from “The Planets.”). I am always grateful to play with the LBSO and I especially enjoy playing for all of the 5th Graders from the Long Beach Unified School District. Thanks Lynda Sue Marks and the staff of the LBSO for...
Concert Programming

Concert Programming

I am always looking for ways to improve the concert-going experience. As artists, I think we need to find a better way to attract and retain an audience. We need to think about concert programming and how to put pieces together that will be interesting to the audience and help our students learn about musicality and programming. I have always disliked going to percussion concerts and/or recitals and watching percussionists move equipment in between pieces. For this reason, I generally choose to have three parts on my percussion ensemble programs with minimal (or no)...
Kopetzki Marimba Concerto

Kopetzki Marimba Concerto

It has been a busy couple of weeks. I performed my Faculty Recital on Friday, January 31 and then I performed the Eckhard Kopetzki Marimba Concerto with the CSULB Symphony Orchestra on Friday, February 7. It was an honor to work with conductor Johannes Müller-Stosch and the students of the orchestra. Below are some photos from the concert. Thanks to Carolyn Bremer for the beautiful photos....
Faculty Artist Recital – Friday, January 31

Faculty Artist Recital – Friday, J...

My upcoming Faculty Artist Series at the Bob Cole Conservatory of Music @ CSULB will be presented on Friday, January 31, 2014 at 8pm in the Gerald R. Daniel Recital Hall. I have decided to perform the first half of the concert without a break. (More about that in a separate post on programming). The program will be: Red Arc/Blue Veil – John Luther Adams A Minute of News – Eugene Novotney A New Collaborative Piece with Martin Herman Pitch Drop – Dave Gerhart Warm It Up – Tom Osborne Kembang Suling – Gareth Farr Concerto for Marimba –...
New Release: Tempo Distortion #4 – Single

New Release: Tempo Distortion #4 –...

I am proud to announce that I have a new single that was released on iTunes and CDBaby. The piece is called Tempo Distortion #4 and was written by my friend and composer Steve Kornicki. Tempo Distortion #4 is a conceptual study in simultaneously occurring patterns in different tempi for solo marimba and pre-recorded and processed marimba sounds. Check it out and let me know what you think. Thanks for your continued...
New CSULB Percussion Program Website

New CSULB Percussion Program Website

At the beginning of the month, I created a new website for the CSULB Percussion Program. I wanted a place where I could post photos, videos and stories about the percussion program. I also wanted a place to reach out to our community and let people know about all of the great concerts and events that are going on in the percussion program. It has been a great semester! We wrapped up the year with our annual Caribbean Holiday Celebration concert with guest artist Liam Teague. I will post a recap to the entire semester in the coming weeks. Until then, please check out the...
Tumblr Update

Tumblr Update

I am not sure if I am the only one still using a RSS reader to consume content on the web. For me, it is the easiest way to read new content. If you have no idea what I am talking about, head over to Wikipedia for a quick recap. Once you find some RSS feeds that you are interested in, a RSS Reader is a handy tool that collects new articles and collates them into a central place so you can read them. On my iPhone/iPad, I prefer to use an app called Newsify. I like the interface and sharing possibilities that this app offers. One of the problems that I have discovered is...
Technology in the Modern Percussion Studio

Technology in the Modern Percussion Stud...

We are all bombarded with technology everyday. Laptops, smartphones, tablets, and recording devises have had a positive impact on the way I teach lessons. It seems like everyday there is a new app, device or service that promises to change the world. Without going into a debate about which platforms are better, I am going to detail how I use technology in my percussion studio. I hope this article will lead to a discussion about what others are using in their classroom. Obviously, this post doesn’t apply to only percussionists and it will be great to hear what other...