Articulation Consideration

Pedagogy, Philosophy

ARTICULATION: WW/Brass Considerations:  Wind players must develop finger, tongue, and air independence. This is accomplished through routine practice of tenuto, staccato, legato, and marcato articulations. The type of tongue action required for a legato note is drastically different than the…


DMA Lecture Recital


I will present a DMA Lecture Recital on April 4, 2015 at the Singletary Center for the Arts on the campus of the University of Kentucky. I will be discussing the topic of my dissertation titled “A Comprehensive Method for…


Buzz Control to Roll Control

Pedagogy, Snare Drum

There are many schools of thought on the proper way to play a snare drum roll. I play with a controlled bounce every time. For march-like tempos, my roll base is 16th-notes. I use three bounces on each 16th-note as…


Methods Band Observation


Each semester, I require my Percussion Methods students to attend a variety of rehearsals and sit within the percussion sections. It’s important these students get an up-close look into the job of a percussionist. What better way to learn than…


Must-Haves for the Percussion Library


There are hundreds of books available for a variety of percussion related topics. They teach us to write, play, hear, and talk about percussion at a higher level. However, not every program can afford all of the available resources. Not…


Don’t Be a Square


During an undergraduate lesson on Andy Bliss’ “Disc Skip,” I had a freshman student perform the piece as stiff as a rail. No movement. He stood there. It looked as though he was either scared of the piece, afraid to…




I just got back into town from PASIC 2014. What an incredible experience! I had the great fortune of conducting Baljinder Sekhon’s “Musica Casera” with guitarist Dieter Hennings and the University of Kentucky Percussion Ensemble. What was most exciting was how…


Snare and a Roll

Snare Drum

I was working the other day with a student on her snare drum roll quality. Her roll was a bit forced and choked, resulting in a very rhythmic and uncharacteristic sound. I have used a particular exercise to help improve…


Snare Drum Curriculum

Snare Drum

A friend asked me for a basic curriculum for a snare drum student. I thought it best to start with a simple, yet effective set of resources. Also, I needed to be sure the progression was logical. One foot in…


Small Doses

Pedagogy, Philosophy

Relax. It’s just drums. Why are you shaking when you play? Why is your brain all over the place? You love music. It’s why you made it your career. Obviously you don’t hate it or you wouldn’t be doing it….

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