[NEWSLETTER of DAVID E. SMITH PUBLICATIONS, LLC]

NEWSLETTER of DAVID E. SMITH PUBLICATIONS, LLC

VOL 8. No 3. FALL, 2006

 

Table of Contents
The Publishers' Space
The Lone Arranger's Space
The String Space
The Brass Space
Two Wolves
The Woodwind Space
The Percussion Space
Potpourri
Thinking...




As for new items in the DESPUB distribution network you will find several more new works, and again, these will show up on the websites and at your favorite dealer. Later, they will be added to the new Catalog when it is available.

THE PUBLISHER'S SPACE
by David E. Smith


As DESPUB strives to improve its offerings and services it is coordinating the efforts of two of its writers and associates, namely Daniel E. Stockton and Dr. Monty J. Budahl. (These gentlemen have been featured in past issues of Lines and Spaces ® in our Meet the Writer Spaces.) Stockton serves as the chief engraver for DESPUB as well as owner of his own company-Stockton Music Services. Budahl is semi-retired and continues to write and edit his own arrangements, new and old. The two have teamed up in offering dozens of new items under the SMS brand of publications. These consist of new solos and ensembles for woodwind and brass instruments and can be found on both www. despub.com and www. churchmusic.biz. Along with these offerings, there are new arrangements by Budahl in the DESPUB catalog upcoming. Be aware that the previous offerings of Brass Quartet Collections (#145422 & #145423) will eventually be deleted and replaced with larger collections that still contain the original arrangements (they will be #145435 & #145436.) Added to the DESPUB Catalog will be new brass quartets: Trust and Obey, Go Ye Into All The World, The Early Patriot's Medley, and Faith Is The Victory.

From the pen of Dana F. Everson comes a brass solo arrangement as well as a brass quintet arrangement of We Are More Than Conquerors. There is much more yet to come from the other DESPUB writers as well, so stay tuned!

 

 From Ken Bauer Productions, a solo for various woodwind, brass and string instruments is Sing We Now Of Christmas, a quintet for saxes, trombones, or mixed brass on Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, and a brass quintet arranged on Deep River. Light Of The World Music has produced two new full orchestra arrangements in time for Christmas, Fantasy on 'Rise Up Shepherd', and American Carol Fantasy. Please remember, if you are looking for a Christmas musical, The Birthday Of A King for choir and all kinds of instrumental and media accompaniments is available. So, there are dozens of new items available as well as thousands of instrumental arrangements already available through DESPUB. Check them out today-we're sure there will be something to meet your every need.
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Transcribe several hymns; then transcribe one for a string quartet, one for a woodwind quartet, and one for a brass quartet. (Don't worry about writing introductions, modulations or endings at this point, just make sure the ranges are adjusted as necessary for the instruments). Try to have these played by live performers who can give you suggestions.

THE LONE ARRANGER'S SPACE
by Dana F. Everson


Self-Learning Projects for the Energetic Writer-Part I

Not everyone has the privilege of taking college level classes in theory, orchestration, or composition, but almost everyone can make at least some progress by seriously tackling some “homemade” writing projects such as those listed below.

Some are rather simple, some are more complicated, but each exercise has the potential for helping you improve your writing in some way. Perhaps you could pick a few of these projects and work on them until such a time as you are able to get more formal training either in a college or formal setting or in a one on one private lesson setting. Three keys will make these projects most effective:
1. Obtain a book on orchestration or arranging such as one of those listed in The Long Arranger article in LINES AND SPACES, vol. 2, #4 entitled “Don't Forget the Books.”
2. Record your work no matter how rough the final product appears. Listen and analyze your writing constantly.
3. Ask other experienced musicians to make comments whether about individual parts or the full score. Listen and learn. Here are some suggestions:

Copy (by hand) the melody and bass lines from several hymns…analyze the contour and the rhythmic similarities/differences of those two voices. You would be in good company-J. S. Bach once stated that his general approach to composing was to work on these two voices first. Brahms even said something to the effect that if the melody and bass are well written, the rest of the music will write itself. A more recent composer of band music for the high school level, Mr. James Swearingen, also told me to be particularly aware of the outer voices.

Transpose the melody and bass lines you copied from #1 above into 2 other keys by hand (not by simply clicking a key on your computer program!).

Copy the alto and tenor lines from several hymns…analyze the contour.

Again, copy the soprano and alto lines and analyze.

Copy tenor and bass lines and analyze.

Copy the words to several different hymns; then try to write your own melody to the rhythm and the implications of the words.

 

Transcribe a simple Baroque or Classical Period piano piece (such as the first movement of a Sonatina or a short contrapuntal movement from a suite) for a small ensemble of instruments. Intermediate level piano music is easily available for most of us. I think it was Dr. Frank Erickson who suggested this idea to me. I know that he recommends this procedure in his book Arranging for the Concert Band.

For example: you might take a minuet/trio movement from a Clementi sonatina or a Haydn sonata and rewrite it for flute, clarinet, violin, horn, and cello, or for a combination of what ever instruments are available for you. Try to keep the main ideas from the piano setting without losing too much in the translation as you adjust for the different instruments.

Analyze arrangements looking for their form, color, and any unique aspects. Ask: “What is it that makes this arrangement work? What is it that makes this arrangement special? How is the writer using Melody, Harmony, Form, Color, and Rhythm to highlight and enhance the message and/or words?”

Copy scores (even if only 16-32 measure sections), of Mozart, Haydn, or Beethoven string quartets. Observe ranges, bowings, voicings, spacings, texture, and multiple stops as you are copying. A creative and experienced writer, Dr. Dwight Gustafson once told me to “learn from the masters.”

Dana F. Everson holds the BME and Master's in Saxophone Performance degrees from Michigan State University, and a Master of Sacred Music from Pensacola Christian College. He has over 300 published works.
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Plan to keep music in folders or folios designed for that purpose. Many groups use cardboard folders available often without charge from the local music stores. Music stores imprint folders with their company name for adver-tisement. While such folders are satisfactory for light or short-term use they do not offer the same level of protection for music as leatherette folios available from companies such as Gamble Music Co. The leatherette folios cost approxi-mately $17.00 each including a gold stamped imprint with the group name and part number. Each folio will last 6-10 years before needing to be replaced. For high school, church, college and professional groups leatherette folios should be purchased. I recommend get-ting the folios that include a pencil pocket. For flexibility in assigning folders some groups may prefer a see-through 3 x 5 card sleeve option on the cover of the folio instead of imprinting the part type.

THE STRINGS SPACE
by Jay-Martin Pinner


Organizing the Church/School Instrumental Music Library-From Filing to Photocopying and the Future - Part 2

In the last column we discussed how to set up an instrumental music library, keep track of missing parts and allow group members to help as librarians. Once a library is established it requires the consistent work of dedicated librarians and oversight from the director to keep it up-to-date. This column will deal with various aspects of the day-to-day operation of an instrumental library.

Appoint group members as librarians. As the library is being set up the director can use as many volunteers as are available. Once the library is organized the director should appoint several group members to be librarians for terms of one or two years. Depending on the size of the group I have used one to four librarians. The librarians should have organi-zational savvy along with the ability to follow directions and take initiative. They need not be the strongest players in the group. At least one librarian should be in training each year to replace another librarian graduating or leaving the group for some other reason.

Duties for the librarians include: distributing and re-filing concert music; erasing and repairing music; assigning accession numbers to new music; stamping and numbering new music; working with the director to be sure each group member has the music needed for rehearsals and per-formances; and keeping track of missing parts and scores.

 

Use a system for distributing music. The group director and the librarians should put music in the folders before a rehearsal begins. Passing out music during a rehearsal wastes valuable rehearsal time and should be the exception to the usual procedure.

At the beginning of the school year distributing a number of titles can be time-consuming and overwhelming, especially for a large group. One efficient means of “stuffing” folders is to lay the folders out in score order on the performance stage or in the rehearsal room on music stands.

The librarians each take a title and place a part on the appropriate folder as they walk in front of the stage or the stands.

The same procedure may be used to distribute a band/orchestra handbook or other information for the group. The use of a non-water fingertip moistener such as SORTKWIK™ (available at office supply stores) greatly speeds up the process of handling and sorting pages.

After the titles are placed on the folders the librarians may “stuff” the folders and put them either on the stands or in a music storage cabinet, ready for the first rehearsal. Music storage cabinets may be purchased from a supplier such as Wenger, or they may be custom built for the group. To save extra work for the librarians I prefer to make the folders “self-serve.” Each group member picks up his folder from the music cabinet before the rehearsal and returns it after the rehearsal unless the folder is going home with the player for private practice. Individual titles should not be pulled from the folio and taken home. Group members should take the complete folio to avoid losing music or having missing parts at a rehearsal.

Use a system for collecting music. Collecting music can be accomplished quickly and efficiently if the labor is divided between the group members and the librarians. Allowing the group to collect and sort music fosters an appreciation for the amount of work the librarians have to do. Involving group members also helps them understand the importance of being good stewards and taking personal responsibility for their music.

If the group has played its last concert for the semester or church year the director may designate a rehearsal time as a work day to collect and sort music. The director should place all of the scores on the stage or on music stands. The folders should be put in score order. Every group member should take a folder, line up in score order and place music on the appropriate pile, moving from title to title. As a group member finishes one folder he should take another and continue until all folders are empty. Score order should be listed on the overhead or on the chalkboard for the group to reference. Each title may be sorted in ascending order (percussion at the bottom of the stack face up) or descending order (flute/piccolo at the bottom of the stack face down). Small groups of two or three students may then check each title to be sure every part has been returned and is in score order. Missing parts, repair needs and other notations should be made on the “Missing In Action” sheet discussed in part 1 of this series. Librarians then double check each title, re-file the music and file the information about missing parts and needed repairs. (Groups enjoy hearing recordings of recent performances as they work.)

Occasionally the director needs to collect only one or two titles. This can be handled during a rehearsal. Group members pass parts to section leaders in score order. Section leaders then pass parts to the librarians. This method enables the director to collect music quickly without sacrificing an entire rehearsal. Groups quickly catch on to these procedures saving the director and the librarians hours of work.

Jay-Martin Pinner is the founding director of the Bob Jones Junior High and Academy Orchestras, having served as the conductor of the Bob Jones Academy Symphony Orchestra for 28 years. He is Head of the String Department at Bob Jones University and conducts the BJU Symphony Orchestra.
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I'm convinced that this simple but very musical exercise accounts for a great deal of the success of graduates from that very fine school of music and others as well. Why? Because what underlies all great playing is a singing quality, and underlying great singing is expressive lyricism. In my own playing, if there isn't time to practice everything I'd like to play, this is the one thing I do NOT neglect, for it is so fundamental to excellent music making.

THE BRASS SPACE
by Phil Norris


 

In Praise of Flow Studies

A good portion of my trumpet studies at Northwestern University included what were called “flow studies.” To be clear on what a flow study is, this is how it works. First, a player takes a study or piece of repertoire that has few if any repeated notes. EVERYTHING is slurred, and if occasional repeated notes occur, these can be lightly tongued or simply tied. The first note, and each first note after a new breath, is commenced without the tongue, using a breath attack. The player holds through all notes followed by rests as if the rest was not there. You continue to play until out of breath, at which time - no matter where you are in the music/phrase - you completely stop the piece, take a full breath as comfortably as possible,. then you continue on as at the first. Volumes can vary but generally flow studies are done at a strong mf dynamic. The procedure is: breath attack, slur flowingly with as much connection as possible, making the most beautiful music you can from note to note until out of air, stop the piece for a comfortable and very full breath, etc.

 

So what is it that flow studies do for the player? First, by using breath attacks, there is an avoidance of the valsalva maneuver, the closing of the epiglottis/throat which creates unwanted compressions of the breath. Blowing fully and directly TO the lips (or reed in the case of those instruments) is essential to beautiful tone. Breath attacks won't entirely guarantee a lack of compression, but it goes a long way to avoiding it or eliminating it if it already exists. Be aware that if a compression habit is in place, there will be a commensurate amount of time to replace that habit to the degree the habit exists. For deeply ingrained compression habits, the player may have to patiently do flow studies for several weeks, avoiding high registers, to replace the old habit.

Second, the concept of “flow” contributes to even lines, consistency of tone from note to note and register to register. “Flow” has been mastered when the player can make very wide interval skips with evenness of tone, line and dynamic. The Jacobs' idea of “wasting'” the breath is integral to flow studies, a challenge for those new to flow studies and even veterans! Try to maintain the sound, not letting the sustain dip or drop at all throughout each breath, yet without pressing or forcing the tone. This evenness of line is essential to expressive, lyrical playing as well as more heralding styles.

Thirdly, wider interval skips improve and gain consistency because of the consistency of airflow to the lip. With flow, lips slurs will be easier to produce, are more consistent in “locking” in to each partial, and can be more musically executed.

Fourth, dynamic control is improved. Not only are lines more even, but crescendi and decrescendi are better-paced with flow blowing than compressed blowing.

Fifth, articulation improves as the tongue needs only provide a small “spark” to “ignite” the full-bodied flow to the lips. In compressed blowing, the airflow is thinner and the tongue has to do more of the “work” in creating the notes, making tiny adjustments in changing register and volume. In “flow” playing, there is one basic quality of breath with which the tongue must interact. In compressed blowing, the breath quality is ever-changing. This is not to imply that those who play with compression can't play excellently, but it certainly requires greater natural skill and concentration in adjusting to ever-changing pressures than to play with one basic kind of airflow.

More so, in highly staccato or heavily articulated passages (e.g. calls or fanfares), with a flow approach there remains a sense of line and lyricism so vital to maintaining good sound when tone might otherwise become harsh. Line and direction will still be present in what might otherwise be a very segmented series of notes. In some ways, in these kinds of situations, flow studies show themselves most beneficial, more than in lyrical situations where the idea of flow is somewhat built into the phrase.

Finally, as I've said in other columns for Lines & Spaces, this kind of blowing produces what to the player's ears is a clearer, more ringing tone - and this is good! - than that produced from compressed blowing, which will sound duller, darker and perhaps more lovely to the player. Surprisingly, the sound from full-bodied flowing breath is not as beautiful to the players ears; it can be somewhat crass, buzzy, or brassy, particularly in lower registers, but is certainly finer to the listener. As I've said as well, “It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that ring.” If you don't already, make flow studies a required part of your playing.

Phil Norris (DMA, Univ. of Minnesota) is professor of music at Northwestern College in St. Paul. He is past president of CIDA. He is also a musician, teacher and elder in his local church.
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TWO WOLVES


 





Next, an explanation should take place about the membrane called the "diaphragm," located between the stomach and the intestinal area.

THE WOODWIND SPACE
by Harlow E. Hopkins


I developed the following plan to attack the problem.

A request is made that when the student next goes to bed he/she
(1)Lie face upward and breathe normally, watching the expansion taking place in the abdominal area while at the same time noticing that the shoulders are not moving.
(2)The suggestion is made to place an object (book for example) on the stomach and continue breathing normally.
(3)Then take in more air and see how high the book can be raised.
(4)Once the book has been raised to the highest possible point, keep the book elevated and blow a small stream of air out through the mouth.

 

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. The diaphragm cannot be directly controlled, i.e., one cannot voluntarily move the diaphragm.

Players "support" the tone by pushing outward against the skirt/ slacks waistband while at the same time producing sound. 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.

Concerning raising the shoulders, we don't do it when we breathe naturally and little or no upward shoulder movement should be observed when inhalation takes place prior to producing sound on the instrument. Raising the shoulders produces a drawing in of the abdominal area and reduces lung capacity. The primary point of difference should be seen in the amount of movement-the amount of expansion in the mid-section of the body. If done properly, one will even see/feel expansion in the back on either side of the spine.

Some teachers ask the student to breathe in deeply-then say "hup", continuing to keep the mouth shut. One can feel the abdominal muscles flex outward and downward thus keeping the diaphragm in a concave position. Then request that the expanded condition be retained while expending a small stream of air.

Suggesting that the student place her/his hands on the sides with the fingers to the front and thumbs to the back will give the person a good idea as to the correctness of the breathing process. If deep breathing is taking place, the student should feel expansion on both sides of the spine.

Another method-ask the person to stand with back against a wall, feet six inches or so away from the baseboard. Abdominal expansion will take place but shoulders will remain immobile.

Finally, sitting on a chair, leaning forward and looking at the floor, hands on the sides, produces the desired effect as well-expansion in the abdominal area when breathing while maintaining stationary shoulder position.

Harlow E. Hopkins is Professor of Music, Emeritus, Olivet Nazarene University, Bourbonnais, Illinois, and continues there as Adjunct Professor of Clarinet. He holds the D.Mus. from Indiana University, Bloomington.
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THE PERCUSSION SPACE
by Billy Madison


Cymbals - According to the Bible

For this issue of Lines and Spaces I decided to list a few verses in the Bible (KJV) where percussion instruments were used or commanded to be used. This is not a comprehensive list and focuses only on cymbals.

After reading these verses you might consider using a few cymbal crashes in your next church service. (But check with your pastor first!)

*Cymbals (metziltayim or tziltzal) were made of copper and were the only percussion instrument in the temple or-chestra. They were used when the people were celebrating and praising God. They joined with trumpets and singers to express joy and thanks to the Lord.

I Chronicles 15:16 “And David spake to the chief of the Levites to appoint their brethren to be singers with instruments of musick, psalteries and harps and cymbals, sounding, by lifting up the voice with joy.”

2 Samuel 6:5 “And David and all the house of Israel played before the Lord on all manner of instruments made of fir wood, even on harps, and on psalteries, and on timbrels, and on cornets, and on cymbals.”

I Chronicles 13:8 “And David and all Israel played before God with all their might, and with singing, and with harps, and with psalteries, and with timbrels, and with cymbals, and with trumpets.”

I Chronicles 16:42 “And with them Heman and Jeduthun with trumpets and cymbals for those that would make a sound, and with musical instruments of God….”

*In passages such as I Chronicles 16:5, some versions translate the Hebrew as castanets. It is now generally believed that this is inaccurate and should be cymbals.

I Chronicles 16:5 ”…and Jeiel with psalteries and with harps; but Asaph made a sound with cymbals;”

*Asaph, David's chief musician, was a cymbal player. When the people returned from captivity, Asaph's descendents were called to join singers and trumpets in praise to the Lord.

Ezra 3:10 “And when the builders laid the foundation of the temple of the Lord, they set the priests in their apparel with trumpets, and the Levites the sons of Asaph with cymbals, to praise the Lord,…”

I Chronicles 25:6 “All these were under the hands of their father for song in the house of the Lord, with cymbals, psalteries, and harps, for the service of the house of God,…”

II Chronicles 5:13 “…and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of musick, and praised the Lord,…”

II Chronicles 29:25 “And he set the Levites in the house of the Lord with cymbals, with psalteries, and with harps,…for so was the commandment of the Lord by his prophets.”

Psalm 150:5 “Praise him upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals.”

*The Bible Almanac, James I. Packer, Merrill C. Tenney and William White, Jr., Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1980, pg. 497. Printed with written permission of Thomas Nelson Publishers.

Billy Madison has taught instrumental music in the Arkansas Public Schools for 18 years. He holds both the BME in Instrumental Music and the MM in Music Theory and Composition from Arkansas State University. He studied composition with Jared Spears and Tom O'Connor. Madison has played percussion with the Northeast Arkansas Symphony since 1978.





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POTPOURRI



  • Be Fishers of Men. You catch'em, He'll Clean 'em.
  • A family altar can alter a family.
  • A lot of kneeling will keep you in good standing.
  • Exercise daily. Walk with the Lord!
  • Forbidden fruits create many jams.
  • Give God what's right, not what's left!
  • God doesn't call the qualified, He qualifies the called.
  • God promises a safe landing, not a calm passage.
  • Having truth decay? Brush up on your Bible!
Author Unknown

 


 





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THINKING...
by Harlow E. Hopkins


One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next Bible Study.

That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work. She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver.

As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up. He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hold the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all the impurities.

The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot; then she thought again about the verse that says:  "He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver." She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined.

The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the silver the entire time it was in the fire. If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.

The woman was silent for a moment. Then she asked the silversmith, "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?"  He smiled at her and answered, "Oh, that's easy-- when I see my image in it."

If you are feeling the heat of the fire, remember that our heavenly Father has his eye on you and will keep watching you until He sees His image in you.

Malachi 3:3 says: "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver." This verse puzzled some women in a Bible study and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God. 
Through the years many students have entered my studio with virtually no concept of proper breathing. In many cases they had never given it a thought!
One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, "My son, the battle is between two 'wolves' inside us all. "One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego. The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevo-lence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith." The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: "Which wolf wins?" The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."

 

Preach Christ Always
And As A Last Resort
Use Words.
St. Francis of Assisi

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