It’s almost that time again: time to hold auditions to sort percussionists into their concert ensemble for next year! For the last several years I’ve been using Concert Percussion etudes I’ve composed as the audition material (I’ve posted about that before here). This year I’ve given them and overhaul to make them an even betterContinue reading “Concert Audition Etudes Updates”
If you are in the market for solo and ensemble music for your percussionists, here is a handy breakdown of my pieces. It aims primarily at answering: “How many people?” “How much stuff?” “How hard is it?” Look it over and let me know if you have any questions. Best wishes for solo and ensemble!
Great and Small, my solo keyboard work with optional audio accompaniment, was named an Editor’s Choice by Music Distributor J.W. Pepper. Several schools included my works on their programs for the Lassiter Percussion Symposium: Alpharetta High School performed Begin Transmission and Cambridge High School and Jackson High School both programmed Song Without Words. I hadContinue reading “2019 Recap”
Advice for preparing to start young music students on snare drum.
Great and Small is a programmatic work comprised of two delightful movements for solo keyboard percussion with optional audio accompaniment. These vignettes depict the powerful beasts Leviathan and Behemoth when they were still young, whimsical, and childlike. Deemed ‘’medium-easy” by the publisher, it is appropriate for older middle school or younger high school students andContinue reading “‘Great and Small’ in Percussive Notes”
“Guac is Extra” serves as a fun way to introduce students to the instruments and style of salsa music. John Herndon does a fantastic job of making the style accessible to younger players, as each uses two drums and an accessory instrument. The performance notes indicate the drums to be played with swizzle sticks; however,Continue reading “‘Guac Is Extra’ in Percussive Notes”
An important part of helping your students grow as musicians is knowing where they currently stand. Holding Class Placement Auditions can help you get a handle on exactly that. By evaluating student’s performance of the same etudes you should be able to group them into those displaying basic, intermediate, and advanced skills. These Audition Etudes focusContinue reading “Audition Etudes”
One of the challenges of selecting percussion ensemble repertoire for educational ensembles is handling the different ability levels that are present within an ensemble. Invariably some students are more advanced and become bored with “easy” parts. Conversely, some students are still developing basic skills and can be overwhelmed (and not educationally served) by advanced repertoire.Continue reading “Percussion Ensemble Recommendations”
In addition to being a fun piece to play and program on a concert, it is also a great way to introduce young students to multiple-percussion score reading and basic extended playing techniques and notation. —Julie Licata Percussive Notes Vol. 56, No. 3, July 2018 You can check out the full review here.
Last year I released a piece entitled Jalopy that is dedicated to my grandfather, Cleo “Grandaddy” Herndon, who passed away in 2009. During a trip in June to South Georgia I had the chance to play a recording of it for the most important audience that will ever hear it: Cleo’s widow, my grandmother, RosalynContinue reading “‘Jalopy’s Most Important Audience”