Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

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Sabeel Khurram Offline
playin' eights
playin' eights
Posts: 25
Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2014 12:53 pm

Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 7:37 pm








Blue Devils packet runthrough! Going to audition this weekend, so I figured I'd get some last tips. Be critical, I don't mind :D. iMovie kept freaking out with triplet partial, flams and malfred, so i uploaded them separately; links are in the annotations. Leave some tips doe!


Mustcontrolchops Offline
paradiddler
paradiddler
Posts: 169
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:57 pm

Re: Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 7:52 pm



Have you marched DCI before?
RHS '11-'12 Pit "Phobias"
RHS '12-'13 Snare "Rain"
RHS '13-'14 Snare "Rampage"
RHS '14-'15 Snare "The Walking RED!"
TAMUK '15-'16 Snare "The Music of Selena"
Image


Sabeel Khurram Offline
playin' eights
playin' eights
Posts: 25
Joined: Mon Jun 23, 2014 12:53 pm

Re: Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:08 pm



Mustcontrolchops wrote:Have you marched DCI before?
No, (gimme a sec to explain myself). I most probably won't make it, and even if I did, I can't make the financial obligations). I plan to really join DCI after high school(next year), but I figured I'd get tips from arguably the best percussion staff ever to gauge my skills and plan ahead.


Mustcontrolchops Offline
paradiddler
paradiddler
Posts: 169
Joined: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:57 pm

Re: Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Sun Dec 07, 2014 8:36 pm



I see. Yeah, I had went to Phantom last year to get critiqued by my dream corps caption head. Then, this past year I went to an open class corps audition at Genesis. Unfortunately, I got cut from that. But both were totally worth the experience and I had a great time drumming with people all over the globe.
RHS '11-'12 Pit "Phobias"
RHS '12-'13 Snare "Rain"
RHS '13-'14 Snare "Rampage"
RHS '14-'15 Snare "The Walking RED!"
TAMUK '15-'16 Snare "The Music of Selena"
Image


SteelSampson Offline
playin' eights
playin' eights
Posts: 63
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2014 1:52 pm
Location: Utah

Re: Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 4:25 am



You are obviously an advanced player, so most critiques you're going to get are most likely going to be minor adjustments.

It would help us help you if we could see the surface you are playing on and if we could see all of your sticks throughout the videos. Sometimes your left stick is getting cut out. I would recommend backing the camera up just a little and pointing it down a few more degrees.

Things to consider:
1. Left hand is sometimes angled down a little too much. Make sure the bead of the LH stick is striking the drum at the same angle as the RH stick.
2. Work on making your hand to hand transitions perfectly smooth. You occasionally rush or drag attacks while switching playing hands.
3. Try to really differentiate double stops from flams. Sometimes your double stops are too open and your flams are too closed.
4. While you do have good overall dynamic heights, when going for BD level playing, you're going to need to perfect the consistency of you Accent vs. Tap heights. Sometimes your taps creep up in height especially when playing lots of flams.
5. I could be mistaken on this (the angle in the video makes it hard to know for sure), but it looks like you may be slightly curling in your left hand. Make sure your wrist is straight in line with your forearm.

You are definitely a good player. All of the points I offer are minor changes. Keep pushing yourself and good luck!


lij2015 Offline
ramming notes
ramming notes
Posts: 736
Joined: Sun May 29, 2011 8:25 pm
Location: Newport News, Virginia

Re: Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Mon Dec 08, 2014 9:03 am



Fun fact of the day, your sticks are not the same weight at all.

Pretty good though! Only critique I have is that every now and the your sticks drift to the right on the head and that your left hand sometimes appears to be twisted a little to much.
Dominion storm: 2011, 2012 Vibes/Marimba
James Madison University


QuadBoss Offline
playin' eights
playin' eights
Posts: 54
Joined: Fri Nov 04, 2011 4:47 pm

Re: Blue Devils 2015 audition (packet runthrough)

Posted: Sat Dec 27, 2014 12:29 am



Hey dude, here's some thought on your snippet of eights in the beginning of the first video. Now these details may seem obsurd, but they are going to send you in the right direction. Although, these are just all things I wish I was told earlier on. Also, I just personally believe a lot of technique issues can be accessed and fixed while playing a legatos exercise, in addition to lessons that contribute to the betterment of other exercises, which are then applied to phrases of music.

- Make sure your beads are at the same height above the drum when you begin the exercise.
- Beads must ALWAYS remain in the center of the drum.
- You fidget with your left hand before you play your first legato stroke with it. It is widely considered that a player should never fidget aka change technique before, during, and after an exercise while set. I can see you change your left hand from time to time throughout the exercise. Set a technique and then never change it because changing it changes the way you play each individual note. (In practice, adjust to improve technique, in performance for others, set a technique and never change it).
- It could be my mac speakers, but your playing comes off as 'light.' When you play eights at ALL height levels and tempos, make sure every rep you practice is with a great attention to velocity. Never ever ever ever take a rep off because that will take you a step backwards. You want to feel like a led weight is attached to a string tied to the bead of your stick pulling your stick to the head. Of course, you must still rebound rather than letting the stick "stick to the head" while playing legato strokes, and stay relaxed in your grip to prevent injury.
- It appears as though you are playing the exercise at 9". If that is so, make sure you play every single note at 9". This should be a time to say ALWAYS practice in front of a mirror. When playing this exercise, constantly ask yourself if both sticks are rebounding to exactly the same height when playing individual strokes and double stops. Also, keep in mind that each stroke needs a consistent velocity throughout so you don't get any slight crescendos and decrescendos (more easy to identify).
- You play the double stops as pseudo flams throughout the exercise. Practice double stops and realize how insanely difficult it is to play multiple double stops in a row perfectly. If someone tells you that it is easy, it is because of a lack of understanding of what a perfect double stop should sound like. Essentially, think of what you might think is a perfect double stop and then attempt to achieve a higher level of perfection than you perceive in your head with your hands.
- Tempo needs to be perfect. ALWAYS practice with a metronome. I'm not saying you don't, but it is good to be reminded sometimes. Good instructors and players do hear every slight fluctuation in tempo, especially when reviewed in person by a tech or by themselves on video. Like with double stops, strive for perfect tempo and exceed what you think might be perfect. Luckily we have metronomes like the "Tempo App" that can give us eight notes that are mathematically perfect that we can listen and play to. Also, realize that the tempo fluctuation is most easily heard in the hand transitions. (As a note it may be beneficial to practice with the tempo in one ear to better access your own playing with the metronome. And then sometimes play tempo through an external source as instructors reviewing video will want to hear the tempo you are playing to in order to access you, and during the summer it will always be how the tempo is distributed to the players during rehearsal).
- General grip notes. Never letting the fingers leave the stick is a good general rule to live by. You do so very often in the left hand. I'm no snare guru, but here is a general exercise to better your left hand. Sit at a desk, or a dinner table, pillow (you need a flat surface where you can have your forearm parallel with the surface. Start with your palm up parallel to the ground, and then turn it as quickly as possible to hit your thumb on the surface with your hand fully palm down parallel with the ground. This can work wonders, trust me. Do it whenever you get bored, or even start your practice routine with it.
- They are right, your sticks are unmatched. This makes your playing seem not as great as it is to people watching your performance. A good tip is that, believe it or not, most sticks are hardly perfectly pitched paired as declared, but this is because that is just how the manufacturing process works. Wood is different, so companies have a high tier of sticks and than a larger lower tier which is more widely distributed. As a reference, you want to use sticks that are equally HEAVY (not light) and equally HIGH in pitch.
- Especially for repping exercises over and over, make sure you mark time if it is desired during the exercise by the group you are looking to audition for (sometimes things are requested to be done without mark time).
- It never hurts to practice your sticks in and out sometimes. It is another detail that shows people watching you that you are more aware of what you are doing, signifying more 'maturity' as a player, just as all these other details do. Make sure it is always a quick concise motion, and if a snappy click is desired, make sure the sound is just as staccato as the sticks in and out motion.
- Lastly, always strive for something greater than perfection, and then you will be where you want to be. When you show anyone, and more specifically an instructor your playing, have it be the best possible representation of your self. Especially in videos where you control exactly what they see. i.e.) if theres an accidental stick click, throw away that video. This has always been important for me as a quad player, because a SINGLE rim is absolutely unacceptable, and it is a sign of immaturity as a player as far as approach to an attitude towards perfection in playing. If a video of me on the internet has a rim in it, trust me I am not proud of it haha and to me that just represents where I may be at as a player to other people.

Have fun practicing this stuff! My favorite thing while practicing is having that AHA! moment when I realize how to do something correctly, or more closely to correct. Realize that doing all this stuff correctly takes a lot of practice and a lot of time devoted to practicing each individual skill listed. And let these details give you perspective on how detailed one must be with all types of exercises and even more so, book. This may not be everything but it will certainly send you in the right direction. :)

ps. 'natural talent' only takes you so far. Correct instruction (important) and application through practice is what WILL get you to where you want to be.
Southington HS - 2009 bass 1, 2010 Tenors, 2011 Tenors, 2012 Tenors
7th Regiment 2011 Tenors

7th Regiment 2012 Center Tenor
7th Regiment 2013 Center Tenor
Madison Scouts 2014 Tenors


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