REMINDER: NO REHEARSAL next week, March 14 (March Break)
Super rehearsal, everyone! Your practicing is paying off, and some sections of each piece came off as very polished and expressive this week. Don’t worry about those missed notes, or needing to edit your part to make it doable, or not feeling up to “improv”. Each of us contributes to our band in a way that no one else can, both musically and socially, as a team player. We are all needed to make this music fun!
Many of you have commented that it is hard to practice at home, alone and out of context. Why not try playing your pieces with the links to each piece two or three times a week and just play what you can? Don’t forget to continue to practice those hard bits as slowly as it takes to get the notes and articulations. Forty minutes daily, or two sessions of 30 minutes, with a break of one hour between works best to really have learning “stick”. Dave Jones, our awesome retired music teacher volunteer , emphasizes that the greatest indicator of success is perseverance! Just keep going, and remember to be kind to yourself! Your best is always good enough!
The band notes are mostly a repeat of Week 7, and worth looking over again for the little things – which make all the difference.
Week 8 –
We Played :
Red book: Lines 13 – 19 and the fifth line on the back cover (Concert Bb exercises, broken chords (aka arpeggios))
A run-through of all 6 pieces at very close to performance tempo:
Jammin’ with Charlie – shape long notes (dynamic – down at the end of phrases, or sfz to build a phrase (accent, suddenly soft and then build through the long note), short-light staccato notes (measure 18, for example), get right off short accents like the end of measure 41, and only 4 articulations in measures 11, 40, 52 because of the tied note.
My Dinner with Ronald – laid-back dynamic and feel (mf), measure 3 drop to mp to begin the crescendo, and change rhythm (beat three add a dot, beat four change to an eighth note). Shape long notes (ex. Measure 5 grow, measure 12 – 13, accent, drop back to piano then grow to mf. Measure 41, there are two conversations going on… so you have to know your part well! Saxes and vibes dominate from measure 41 – 44, then the brass take over the conversation in importance. From measure 49 – 52, we all agree! (we are together) Syncopate measure 51 as done in measure 3. Layer the dynamics, dropping every two bars, from measure 62-63 (f), to measure 64-65 (mf), measure 66-67 (mp), and we will slow down the last three bars, gradually (watch conductor).
It Don’t Mean a Thing – layer crescendo, each measure from 5 – 8 a step up from the last in dynamic level. Really build it up to measure 32, aiming for that second beat as the climax. We played as soli (the whole group played) at 45 (brass) and at 53 (reeds). Colour-code your road map (DS signs– yellow, Coda signs–red).
Stay Cool – flute and bells have soli from measures 1 – 7 and then pass the tune off to the brass. Flutes and bells soli at measure 34, 46-47, 65, and low brass 35, 44-47, 60, 62 are high exposure sections. These are spots to focus on , remembering that your best is good enough!
25 or 6 to 4 – The longer notes are all worth two eighths (keep the eighth note ticking away in your mind). In measures 12 and 28, trombones should use the alternate positions to play the glissandos… really lay into these! The Coda has some interesting harmonies, so try practicing this part with your tuner and check your pitches and intonation (sharp/flat/ in tune – the tuner shows green or center when you are right on). Colour-code the road map markings.
Frankenstein – articulations are important – keep staccato notes light so that the other notes are prominent. All through the piece, when you play eighth notes with the slur, make this part flow like water, yet have each eight note exactly the same as the others in length… computer precision. (loop that measure or phrase slowly, then increase tempo). Say trip – o – let and keep each note equal, for triplets. Fall offs should go down in pitch and also dynamic level (get softer, not stay the same). On the last fall off, hold the pitch with conviction until a signal from the band leader to fall off.
Red book: chord building (page 32, back cover) with 1,3,5,7 of scale, review the relative natural minor scale
Review all tunes at tempo, and note 25 or 6 to 4, measure 13-14 eighth, two sixteenths for those who wish extra challenge. Work on tricky sections under tempo. Have fun soloing with conviction and attitude! Bring a cool hat or sunglasses, or wear a leather jacket…. Any cool accessories to help with attitude!
NO REHEARSAL March 14 (March Break)
Social Outing – March 28
Sunday, April 15 End of Session Concert (Concert Bands at 2 pm, all musicians group photo at 3:30, Jazz Bands 4 pm)
Warm up – to be decided (1:30 or 3?)
Community Concert – to be decided: evening of Wed. April 18 or Tuesday, June 12, or a weekend afternoon (June 16-17?) Please let Kyle and Cathy know if you have a suggestion for a venue where a short free concert would be appreciated. Examples: a senior residence with a large performance space, a park setting, local pub or restaurant with large space, charity fund-raiser, ?
Things to consider: lots of free parking near venue, electricity, 27 chairs without arms available, audience will appreciate rock-jazz repertoire,