The Seven People You Meet at Marching Band Contests

It’s almost fall, so that means it’s time for marching band. In a few short weeks, bands all across this land will climb aboard their big yellow chariots and traverse over hill and dale, performing for crowds and hopefully becoming better musicians in the process. The sights and sounds of marching band are always interesting…

Upgrading Your Percussion Section

Unless you are a trained percussionist, it could be very easy to overlook the importance of purchasing and maintaining high quality auxiliary percussion instruments.  These items are often overlooked, but provide the most important voices in the percussion section in many higher level band and orchestral pieces.  However, far too often, I hear high school…

Cymbals Explained

These specialized brass-alloy plates are not all made the same. Cymbals range in size from 4″ – 26″ and up. They may all look similar, but have many different sounds and applications. This guide is created to help assist non-percussionists in finding the correct cymbals for their needs. All opinions expressed below are based upon…

Imitation

As string and wind musicians progress, they begin to blend effortlessly between one another when passing off melodies within the ensemble. I had the pleasure to experiencing this a few weeks ago during a brilliant performance from the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. During one particular melody, it was difficult to determine where the trumpet stopped and the…

Tuning Keyboard Percussion

You didn’t misread the title of this article. In today’s article, we will discuss the tuning of keyboard instruments. About half the schools I visit on a weekly basis have at least one keyboard instrument that is out of tune. Negligence and mistreatment of the bars is almost always the culprit.