NEWSLETTER of DAVID E. SMITH PUBLICATIONS, LLC
VOL 2, NO. 2, MAY 1, 2000
© 2000 Copyright of David E. Smith Publications
All Rights Reserved. Made in U.S.A.
Table of Contents
The Lone Arrangers's Space
Meet Rick D. Townsend
David E. Smith Publications, LLC, is pleased to announce that our "Lines and Spaces" newsletter now has its own legally registered trademark.. Many continue to request reprint permission for local newsletters, church bulletins and educational handouts and while permission has never been withheld, credit needs to be given.
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David E. Smith
THE LONE ARRANGER'S SPACE
Transcription--the relatively direct transfer of a composition from one medium to another. The Form, Harmony, Melody, Rhythm, and overall style do not change. The primary change is of Color. (instruments or voices).
Dana F. Everson
Composition--the shaping of sounds in time to express an idea or series of ideas. The Melody, Harmony, Form, Color, and Rhythm are chosen by the composer. The assumption is that the result is a unique work of art.
Arranging--creatively constructing a piece of music based upon a pre-written composition. Arranging overlaps both transcription and composition. The arranger takes the melody and the general spirit of the original piece and varies it, adds transitional, introductory, and terminal materials, (usually based upon the original) countermelodies or descants, and may reshape the Form, Harmony, Color, and Rhythm of the original.
I enjoy arranging because of the freedom and the challenge of crafting a clever, yet meaningful work which expresses the intent of the original in a fresh way. There is an automatic limitation in arranging hymns in that I never want to obscure the spirit of the original, yet desire to explore its different facets. For example; in my arrangement of Satisfied, published by David E. Smith for woodwind solo, the first verse expresses a lifelong thirst and search for peace of soul...I decided to couch that longing in the minor mode. When the chorus comes along... "Halleluia! I have found Him..." the music breaks into the major mode. This is a simple example of the freedom the arranger might take to vary the original in order to deepen the sense of longing, and then brighten to sense of that soul finding Christ.
As an example of the challenge; I must constantly ask of the accompaniment, of the rhythms, and of the melodic ornamentations: "Is this supporting or distracting from the message of this song?" My hope and intention is always to enhance and lift up the tune and to create in the listener's mind and heart a vivid picture of the cross, or the sparrow, or the Friend We Have in Jesus. I'm well aware that I fall short of achieving the best balance, but this is my goal. I hope you sense that in my arrangements. I hope you are looking for that as you consider using many of the fine arrangements produced by David E. Smith Publications.
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IS SOMEBODY UP THERE?
The coming of Spring always confirms the existence of God for the Christian. There is indeed Someone up there! The renewal of life which He established so long ago continues, and will continue for as long as He desires.
Harlow E. Hopkins
Several years ago I heard a debate concerning whether or not God exists. There were two debaters. One was a learned, erudite university professor and the other, who argued for the existence of God, was well-educated but not the debating equal of the professor. God's advocate pointed to the universe and its consistent perfect running for many centuries, the beauties of nature, the wonders of human creation and its myriad complexities, etc. SOMEONE was responsible for all of this, to not only create it but to keep it going!
The other gentleman pointed out that there is actually no proof that God has done all that His advocate credits him with doing. "Give us tangible, irrefutable proof," he said.
When it came his turn God's advocate took another tack. He said, "We may see someone swimming but we can't really know it's possible to swim until we jump in and do it ourselves. So it is where the existence of God is concerned. One needs to "jump in," commit yourself to the search, and earnestly, honestly seek Him. He will communicate and the seeker will indeed KNOW that God exists. No one who has earnestly sought God has ever failed to find him!"
It's true! But--for the Christian, Creation points to Him and is a confirmation that He exists. Welcome, Spring! Thanks for yet another confirmation.
Yes, there is somebody up there and what's more He is in fact HERE as well. We celebrate His life every spring at Easter. We rejoice in the Creator-plan which resulted in an immaculate conception, a miracle-producing life, an unspeakable death--a sin-sacrifice for all who believe--and an unbelievable resurrection. He reawakens Nature-life every spring, but more miraculously he can renew Human spirit-life regardless of the season.
He does indeed LIVE and believers know it from the inside out.
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Heritage was produced by the featured arranger in this issue and it is a welcomed addition to the pedagogical needs in so many schools, church conservatories and private lessons. Dr. Townsend has put together a blend of sacred melodies, in the Christian Heritage, and technical exercises that sequence with traditional band methods. There are two volumes in the series that can coordinate with band methods- available in concert and brass band instrumentation. The piano books serve as a legitimate accompaniment for the melodies that are included in the series so the books can be used as a solo collection. The horn and percussion books are "double" books to add versatility in instrumentation and color. For those who haven't experienced the sacred material in Heritage, it's definitely worth the consideration.
Heritage in the Catalog
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David E. Smith
Given the key of the horns being equal, the following valve combinations & slide positions will have the same sounding overtone series:
by Phil Norris
Valve Combination: 0, 2, 1, 1-2, 2-3, 1-3, 1-2-3
Slide Position: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7
In addition to a fingering/slide chart, it is useful, for young players, to create an overtone series chart by fingering (not by chromatic scale). On a multi-stave sheet, place all the notes in columns for each fingering/slide position (e.g. for 1-2-3 on cornet, from bottom to top: F#/Gb, C#/Db, F#/Gb, A#/Bb, etc.). In this way, young players will see as well as hear and feel the various notes within one fingering/ position.
For Trumpet/Cornet, all fingering charts should add the letters "SL" with all 1-3 and 1-2-3 combinations, where "SL" means extending the 3rd valve slide whenever the fingering is played. No published lists do so, yet these fingerings are extremely sharp in pitch and always require additional lengths of pipe, with the only exception being very fast scale passages.
For the double horn, fingerings for both the F and Bb sides should be listed. The normal shift from F to Bb sides of the horn usually occurs between written G (F side) and G# (Bb side), although for reasons of facility this shift rule is adjusted when appropriate.
Mouthpiece Placement & Mouthpieces
Mouthpiece placement is determined by jaw and teeth structures. Some players may play slightly off to the side. This is fine IF done so because of supporting structures.
The mouthpiece should be generally centered left to right and top to bottom. Some sources may say 60% on top, 40% on bottom, but who can say what is right given the variants of lip size and mouth/teeth structures from player to player. The amount of overbite is also a factor. As mentioned in an earlier article, any overbite should be corrected.
The size of mouthpiece diameter (designated by the first number on a mouthpiece) is also individualized. Larger diameters work better for larger-lipped players (and vice versa), but larger diameters also require greater lip strength and endurance. Beginners will be helped by smaller diameter cups, but as lip strength and range increase, the size of the cup should be increased until an optimum size is reached.
When higher-pitched instruments are used, the recommendation is to KEEP the same diameter cup, but a SHALLOWER cup be used (esp. for piccolo trumpets). A simple blowing test can determine the "fit" of the mouthpiece for the horn: on an open middle concert F, blow an extreme crescendo from very soft WITHOUT making any lip adjustments. If the pitch does not change up or down but stays true, the match ("fit") is good. If the pitch goes up, down, or shifts partials, then the mouthpiece will require "lipping" which will affect resonance and player endurance.
The change from one combination to another should be done as fast as or faster than the speed of air through the horn.
Hand positions should be relaxed and natural (as it is when dropped to the side). For valve instruments, push the finger tabs/valves quickly. The pad of the finger (not the end tips) should touch the tab. For slides, SNAP the wrist into position WHILE keeping the arm motion fluid and smooth. Wrist snaps should not be stiff, just quick and relaxed. This basic slide motion is very important for fast passages. Trombone slide motion should be such that the listener is not aware of any glissing, as if a valve is used, when legato style is played. Rotor valves have built-in speed mechanically. The finger movements merely need to be firm and quick.
Right Hand Positions for Horns
As for all hand positions, the most relaxed and natural position is best: drop the hand to the side, retain the position of the hand and bring into the bell of the horn. The index knuckle should be on top with the hand not too deep into the bell. The fingers should be against the outer side of the bell. This position would allow the players to easily stand and play.
By moving the hand into and out of the bell, intonation will be affected: flatter moved inward, sharper taken out. With embouchure control a difficult matter for horn players, making pitch adjustments by hand removes some of the responsibility from the lip. Making hand adjustments will help accuracy and control, especially in upper register playing. Some intonation can be adjusted by the lip, but using the hand will help.
Muting & Stopping
On horns, MUTING is done by covering the palm of the hand over the bell, and is marked by the word "mute" or sometimes a small "o" with the note. Hand muting LOWERS the pitch by 1/2 step, and the player must transpose the written notes UP 1/2 step to compensate for the muting. Sometimes muting is also marked by the "+" sign. Regardless of the marking, the printed note is the pitch to be sounded.
STOPPING is done by curling the fingertips and shoving the hand INTO the bell and "blocking" the opening of the bell and is marked with a the word "stopped" or with the "+" sign. The "o" sign in this context would indicate open notes. Hand stopping SHORTENS the horn's length, RAISING the pitch 1/2 step. Stopping should only be done on the F horn. It doesn't work all that well on the Bb horn. The player must transpose the written notes DOWN 1/2 step to compensate for the stopping.
Mechanical mutes can be used for the same effects IF there is sufficient time to insert or remove the mute. Horn mutes come in transposing and non-transposing models, so be certain what you ask for when ordering.
4th Valve/Trombone Valves
The 4th valve on trumpets, baritones, and tubas equals the combination 1-3 (lowers the open instrument a perfect fourth). The 4th valve in combination with other valves allows the instrument to play lower than it could with just 3 valves. The 4th valve also allows for improved intonation of the 1-3 combination (4th valve substituted for 1-3). Adding the 4th valve to other combinations does not change the sequence of valve progressions in the chromatic scale (i.e. 0, 2, 1, 1-2, 2-3, 1-3, 1-2-3, 1-4, 1-2-4, 2-3-4, 1-3-4, 1-2-3-4 will yield a descending chromatic line beyond the natural range of the 3-valve instrument).
F Attachment Trombones are those with one piston valve added.
Depressing the valve tab will lower the open horn a perfect 4th (as the 4th valve noted above). The valve can similarly be used with other slide positions to yield notes below the natural range of the instrument. In the case of trombone, though, the lower the notes WITH the F attachment, the lower (longer) the normal positions must be (e.g. 5th position with the F attachment added must be positioned lower than it normally would be placed without the valve).
Bass Trombones will usually have 2 valves, one in F, and the second in various keys depending on the model. The usual keys would be Eb or D. Tubas with a 5th valve are like bass trombones. The 4th valve lowers the horn a 4th; the 5th valve may be in various keys, but usually Eb or D, depending on the model.
Playing brass instruments is very similar to athletic activity and should be approached in much the same way in the warm-up.
LOW - for relaxation of muscles and promoting increased blood circulation to the muscles used in playing; to loosen and relax embouchure muscles so as to avoid muscle strain during strenuous playing conditions.
SLOW - for focusing mental concentration
Another warm-up technique, when the embouchure is tired or stiff, is to place warm water or warm compresses on the embouchure to relax the tissue.
In articles to follow, I will discuss important aspects of tonguing and slurring.
Phil Norris is an Associate Professor of Music at Northwestern College, St. Paul, Minnesota 55113, where he teaches and actively performs on trumpet. Last spring he completed a Doctor of Musical Arts degree at the University of Minnesota. Phil is a former president of the Christian Instrumentalists and Directors Association and continues to compile and edit the CIDA's Sacred List of Instrumental Music.
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MEET RICK D. TOWNSEND
He and Linda were married in 1973. She was an elementary general music teacher and private piano instructor.
During the 70s he was a public school band director in Grayling, Michigan. Following this period of gaining practical experience Townsend decided to "make his millions" as a building contractor. It was during that time that he became sensitized to the needs of music programs in Christian schools.
In 1980 he left the building industry and became a "circuit ridin' band director," serving about a dozen Christian schools. He continued this intinerancy for three years and during that time served approximately 25 schools from Sault Ste. Marie to the southern border of Michigan. He and Linda settled at Freedom Farm Christian School, located near Pittsford, Michigan, where he wrote music curriculum and continued to circuit ride for three more years.
Eventually, when the car and the seat of his pants wore out, he started a camp for students at the school which he had been serving--Freedom Farm Music Camp. It was in operation from 1983 to 1996.
The work at Freedom Farm Christian School (1981-1986) was interrupted for two years when a move was made to Upper Marlboro, Maryland, where he taught band and choir and directed the church orchestra at Riverdale Baptist Church and School.
The call came once again to Freedom Farm and the Townsends remained there from 1988--1996.
In 1996 Rick accepted a position as director of instrumental music and director of music education at Maranatha Baptist Bible College in Watertown, Wisconsin. There he teaches band, brass choir, percussion ensemble, music methods classes, sight singing and ear training, and the electronic music courses.
He has published several arrangements but has been most interested in curricular materials. Heritage, a beginning band supple- ment, was published in 1993 and Heritage II is available now as well. The score is in its final completion stages. Both books are available from David E. Smith Publications.
Townsend completed his Masters degree in Music Education and Administration at Central Michigan University in 1985. His intriguing thesis was titled: "Music Theory and Practice - 3500 BC - 1500 BC."
Doctoral work was completed the first week of May, 2000, at Michigan State University. He now holds a PhD in Music Education with a Wind Conducting Cognate. The dissertation was entitled "Extra-musical Association and the Freedom Farm Senior Saints: The Process of Music Philosophy."
Beginning this Fall, Townsend will be organizing extensive early field experiences with the Watertown Public School system in coordination with the music methods courses he teaches at Maranatha. There are currently 18 music education majors.
Rick and Linda have three children, David, Todd and Jenny. David, who has taken the reins at Freedom Farm, and wife Judi, are the parents of Amanda Rose who was born last year and is the first grandchild for Rick and Linda.
Todd is teaching math and music at a mission school in Portugal and has accepted a teaching assistantship at Bob Jones University in the math department.
Jenny is a 5th year senior at Maranatha, plays French Horn in the Maranatha band, and is an all-conference volleyball player on the college team.
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Motivation is having a reason for action. High school students are motivated by social relationships, grades and personal rewards. We can have an exciting high school music program wherever we serve the Lord if we learn how we can direct those motivations for a Christ-honoring manner of life. Like Peter we must "stir up" our students! [II Peter 1:13, 3:1]
Spiritual motivation occurs when there is a spiritual philosophy and a spiritual emphasis. One without the other does not work. The program that has a spiritual philosophy will provide students with a Christ-centered music program and will teach students to love good music, not worship it as a god. This emphasis must come from the administration down through the faculty and be communicated consistently to the students. Instead of creating a student following based on his own personality or based on the glorification of music as an end in itself, the director should help students focus on developing their talents for God s glory and on using those talents to minister to others.
T.N.T. For Spiritual Motivation
Physical motivation occurs when there is an expectation of accomplishment, there is focused energy in the teacher and there is an opportunity for physical movement. The moment students enter the rehearsal room they should know that the director has several clear, realistic goals for the group. The director should exhibit alertness, and his body language and vocal inflections should communicate an expectation of a professional rehearsal with corresponding results. The rehearsal area should be set up to allow students to play comfortably, to sit correctly in front of the music stand and to see the director clearly.
- Pray for our students.
- Write notes of encouragement to our students.
- Make opportunities for spiritual success for our students by asking a church music director to have a student play or sing at an appropriate service; by taking students to nursing homes, retirement centers and rescue missions to minister with music or by setting up a
- mini-tour* to area churches.
- Have different students pray to begin class or rehearsal.
- Talk with our students one-on-one about what is going on in their lives, their spiritual growth and answers to prayer. Often this can be done by arriving at rehearsal early and talking with students as they unpack.
T.N.T. For Physical Motivation
Mental motivation occurs when there is perspiration, inspiration, concentration and repetition. Few things motivate students more than a director who has done his homework and is obviously doing everything he can to help his students succeed. The director must be tireless in finding the best literature for his group, in setting up worthy performance opportunities and in stretching himself and his group to strive for excellence. He should read everything he can and research the music he is conducting. He should attend live performances of professional groups (to keep his standards high) as well as performances by different high school groups (to keep his standards realistic). He should pitch in and help the state organizations at All State and Concert Festivals. He should attend his students' recitals, their ball games and other important events whenever possible. He should concentrate on giving his students the best musical experience of which he is capable. And he should use the podium as a bully pulpit to drive home the constant quest for excellence, and the belief that every one of the students in that group can succeed for the glory of God.
- Get to the rehearsal area EARLY and organize materials and the rehearsal before students arrive!
- Outline the lesson plan on the board or the overhead projector and verbalize it to students early in the class hour. Announcements and upcoming events should also be put on the board.
- Have a student stage manager set up the rehearsal room in advance of each rehearsal. This student should also be responsible to fix wobbly music stands and inform the director of any broken equipment.
- Have a student secretary take attendance.
- Have a student librarian take charge of passing out music, collecting it and filing it.
- Videotape yourself during a rehearsal and evaluate your energy level, your body language and your vocal inflections to determine what you can do to improve. Put yourself in the place of your students. Would you be able to stay awake and motivated in your class?
- Have students demonstrate whenever possible and praise them in front of the group when they do well. It may be prudent to have two or three students demonstrate together so that one student does not feel intimidated.
- Keep the room temperature and the general atmosphere conducive to learning. A hot room is the kiss of death on a rehearsal. Crank up the air-conditioning, prop open doors and go buy fans. Do whatever you have to do to make the room comfortable. [In thirty years I have rarely been in a rehearsal room that was too cold!]
- Have students take a 60-second stretch break during rehearsal.
- Involve students actively through singing pitches, speaking rhythmic syllables and clapping rhythms.
- Keep attractive, current bulletin boards that invite students to walk over and read a book or journal article, or to look at the latest contest and festival information.
- Keep books and magazines available in the rehearsal area for students to check out and read.
T.N.T. For Mental Motivation
Conclusion -- Our motivation for teaching should come from a desire to minister to our students. If we communicate this desire to our students we will succeed in motivating them to be the best that they can be for God s glory.
- Put our students to work for themselves. Select officers and assign duties. Get as many students involved as possible delegating necessary but rehearsal time-draining responsibilities such as secretarial work (taking attendance, keeping test scores on the computer), librarians and stage manager/stage crew.
- Reward our students as they reach short-range goals and long-range goals. Have a pizza party, a banquet, a trip to an amusement park, a steak dinner for the officers, annual awards and names (with responsibilities) printed on programs at every public appearance.
- Organize a system of points and tangible, public rewards.
- Encourage our students to be creative in solving a problem by having a suggestion box in the classroom.
- Have auditions for solo appearances with the group.
- Feature a player or section of the week on a prominent bulletin board.
- Give written tests and playing tests regularly.
- Have seat challenges.
- Have students teach during class. They can conduct, present a short report on a composer or a piece of music that the group is rehearsing or they can model hand positions and posture.
Jay-Martin Pinner is Head of the String Department and coordinator of the Precollege Orchestra Program at Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC. He has been a member of the Bob Jones University Symphony Orchestra for 28 years, and has appeared with that orchestra as concertmaster, soloist, principal violist, principal bassist and conductor.
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Concepts of tone in Multiple Percussion Performance
by Billy Madison
Tone is of the utmost importance in multiple percussion performance. One should keep in mind that in constructing a multiple percussion set-up you are actually building a new "instrument." All of the various instruments used make up a larger single "instrument." Special attention should be given to proper tone production on each individual instrument so the various sounds will blend together. No one instrument should "stick-out" from the others. Experimentation with different tone productions during rehearsals will result in the best performance. This experimentation is necessary as a great variety of tone colors are available on cymbals and various auxiliary instruments. It is also necessary to take into account the varying rates of sound decay for different types of instruments, as this will effect the overall tone production.
Consideration should be given to the sticks and mallets used, as different instruments must be frequently struck with beaters that are not conventional for the instruments. The size of the sticks and mallets used should also be appropriate for instruments used. Small sticks and mallets on larger instruments generally do not bring out the lower or fundamental pitch as well as large sticks and mallets do not articulate well on smaller instruments.
Along with proper tone production is equal dynamic consideration for the various instruments. Some may require a harder stroke than others to produce the same volume level. Always consider this when developing a tonal concept for a work especially when changing from various drums to metallic instruments to wood instruments, etc.
Regardless of the specific instrumentation for any multiple percussion set-up, care must be taken to produce a uniform sound. Proper tone production and dynamics should be given top priority to accentuate good technique and rhythmic accuracy.
Billy Madison holds the BME (Instrumental Music), the MM (Music Theory and Composition) and the SCCT in music. All three degrees were taken at Arkansas State University. He has studied composition with Jared Spears and Tom O'Connor. Since 1978 Madison has been a percussionist with the Northeast Arkansas Symphony Orchestra and has taught instrumental music in the Arkansas Public Schools for fifteen years. He currently resides in Newport, Arkansas
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I'm inclined to think, at times, that the greatest single misunderstood facet of wind instrument playing is proper breathing.
by Harlow E. Hopkins
It is impossible to estimate how many students I've worked with across the years who have come to me with no idea whatsoever about proper breathing. In many cases they had never given it a thought!
Two things in particular have been observed. Many, many times I have watched the shoulders go up when air is taken in. Secondly, the concept of "supporting" the tone is absent.
Following a lesson during the very first month of instruction, my teacher told me to go home, lie down face upward and play my clarinet. The concept of expansion in the abdominal area when inhaling soon became an integral part of my playing. Of course, I could not raise my shoulders in that supine position.
A healthy person breathes naturally and normally when lying on her/his back. The abdomen rises with each inhalation and falls with each exhalation. I've used this exercise with students for years and have enjoyed a high degree of success. Unfortunately, there have been a few who could not make the change from the firmly-entrenched habit of raising the shoulders when inhaling.
As for the second problem, a simple explanation about the location of that membrane called the "diaphragm," which separates the chest cavity from the abdominal cavity, should take place early in the study of a wind instrument.
When the player inhales, the diaphragm is forced downward into a concave position as the lungs expand. When the air has been used up the diaphragm returns to a convex position. Players "support" the tone by pushing outward against the waistband of slacks or trousers, while, at the same time, blowing to produce tone. The pressure needed to support the tone should not create undue tension in the abdominal area, but it must be enough to keep the diaphragm down as long as needed before inhaling once again.
(To be continued in the August issue)
Harlow Hopkins holds a Bachelor's degree from Olivet Nazarene University, a Master's degree from the American Conservatory of Music (Chicago), and a D.Mus. from Indiana University, Bloomington. His teaching career took place at Olivet Nazarene University (Kankakee, Illinois) where he taught 42 years and conducted bands for 39 years. He retired in 1996 and continues to reside in Bourbonnais, Illinois, and teach part time at ONU, play clarinet, co-conduct a New Horizons Band and edit newsletters.
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Preach Christ Always
And As A Last Resort
St. Francis of AssisiMotivating the Christian High School Musician or T.N.T.--"Tools N Tips" to Blast a High School Student Into Action! Rick Townsend grew up on a farm in Onondaga, Michigan. Following high school he attended Alma College and earned his BA degree in Music Education.
Preach Christ Always
And As A Last Resort
St. Francis of AssisiIn previous articles I've discussed aspects of brass sound, embouchure, respiration, and the basic types of brass instruments and their construction. In this article I wish to talk a little about operation of the instruments. WHAT IS ARRANGING?
It occurred to me one day many years ago, how little known the work of the arranger is. Everyone knows the work of a performer, since the activity unfolds before the listeners' ears and eyes in a concert setting. Most folks know that a composer starts with, theoretically, nothing, and creates a melody, harmony, and maybe lyrics, along with the other elements of his/her composition. But if an arranger did not write the original tune, and if the arranger is not on the platform or the concert stage presenting the music, just what is it that he/she does? By David E. Smith