Author Topic: No__100__Playing instruments voices authentically - Percussion Instruments  (Read 1340 times)

Peter Anderson

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Re: No_100___Playing instruments voices authentically - Percussion Instruments
« Reply #45 on: February 21, 2019, 02:45:29 PM »
Maracas


Maracas come from Mexico.     They are essentially rattles, often made from gourds (which are a kind of squash), filled with dried seeds, beads or even tiny ball bearings that make them rattle.
Maracas can also be made of wood or plastic and the sound they make depends on what they're made of, and what is inside each one.   To play them, you hold them in your hands and shake them, preferably in time to the metre.

These are most commonly used within a style, so their rhythm will be set for you.
Just like all the other percussion instruments, set the volume to balance with the rest of your registration.
 
In the next reply we'll bang the gong.

Maracas on your Key Boards can be found at:
Maracas @   Upper Keyboard     Bb 3
Maracas @   Lower Keyboard     Bb 4

Peter

Peter Anderson

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Re: No_100___Playing instruments voices authentically - Percussion Instruments
« Reply #46 on: February 25, 2019, 03:02:25 PM »
Gong

This example is over 30 inches in diameter


The gong, also known as the tamtam , is a very large metal plate that hangs suspended from a metal pipe.    It looks similar to a cymbal and is also untuned, but is much larger and has a raised centre.
To play it, you hit the centre with a soft mallet.    Depending on how hard you hit it, you can make a deafening crash or the softest flicker of sound.

By using it wisely, as a voice on your AR, it can be a very effective addition to your renditions.   It is not the sort of sound you want to overdo, or keep bashing repetatively.   At appropriate points, it can be very effective indeed, so this is more likely to be assigned to one of your keys or pedal, rather than incorporated into a style.


I am sure that you will be familiar with this, from the start of the Rank Organisation films


It was jokingly said, that it was Arthur Askey hitting the small gong, found on granny's sideboard!

The Gongman (also known as the "man-with-the-gong") is a company trademark for the Rank Organisation.   It was used as the introduction to all Rank films, many of which they shot at their Pinewood Studios, and included those Rank distributed.     The Gongman logo first appeared on films distributed by General Film Distributors, which was established in 1935 by the British producer C. M. Woolf and J. Arthur Rank.    It was C.M. Woolf's secretary who devised the man-with-a-gong trademark.  When the Rank Organisation was established in 1937, with General Film Distributors as one of its cornerstones, the logo was adopted for the whole organisation.

The Gongman film logo sequence depicts a man striking a huge gong with a deep resonant sound.  The gongs used in the films were props made of plaster or papier-mâché.    The sound came from James Blades striking a real gong—specifically a Chinese instrument called a tamtam that was much smaller than the prop.    During the sequence, the text "General Film Distributors", " J. Arthur Rank Film Distributors", "J. Arthur Rank presents" or "'The Rank Organisation" appeared over the gong.

Athletes who played the Gongman in the film sequence over the years, included boxer Bombardier Billy Wells and wrestler Ken Richmond.    Also, George Francis Moss Snr played the Gongman.

In 2012, to celebrate the Gongman's 75th anniversary, The Rank Group, the gaming company that in 1996 acquired the remaining business interests of the Rank Organisation, as well as the rights to its logo and name, announced a nationwide competition to find a new Gongman, or woman, for the 21st century, and Chris Rowley from Stoke-on-Trent won the competition and is the new official Rank Gongman.
 
In the next Reply we'll ring the Chimes.

Peter

Peter Anderson

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Re: No__100___Playing instruments voices authentically - Percussion Instruments
« Reply #47 on: February 28, 2019, 03:38:45 PM »
Chimes


Chimes are metal tubes of different lengths that are hung from a metal frame.    When you strike the tubes with a mallet, they sound like the ringing bells of a church.    Each chime sounds a different pitch.

When using these, as a voice on your Yamaha AR, be prepared to apply some sustain to replicate what they sound like in their natural state.
Remember, that if you select them on the Lead, then on your AR you will not be able to apply any sustain at all.

If you don't remember why this is, click this link to refresh your memory:

http://www.ar-group.org/smforum/index.php?topic=1928.msg6341#msg6341

After the inevitable Hoffnung cartoon, next we'll cast the net on Castanets.

Peter

Peter Anderson

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Re: No__100___Playing instruments voices authentically - Percussion Instruments
« Reply #48 on: February 28, 2019, 03:41:03 PM »
Gerard Hoffnung's take on Chimes!    Particularly if the player gets over enthusiastic.



Peter

Peter Anderson

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Castanets

These fun wooden instruments come from Spain and are used to punctuate the music with a distinctive clickety-clack sound.    Castanets are made of two pieces of wood tied together.
To play them, you hold them with your fingers and click the two pieces of wood together.     

However, in the orchestra, castanets are sometimes mounted on a piece of wood, and the percussionist plays them by hitting them with his/her hands, or holding the handle, where applicable, and flipping them. 

Either held in the hands, or sometimes on a stick...


...showing how they are held and played in the hands


You will realise from these pictures, that they can be made either single or doubleheaded.   
By doubleheaded, I mean a pair of castanets are fitted, one to each end of the same stick
These are played by rapid rotation of the hand in which they are held, or I suppose you could have a matching pair and have a pair in each hand. 
This type of castanet, is easy to pick up and put down, especially for the percussionist, who is required to play many other percussion instruments, in any particular piece of music.

In future replies, we point out many other less common, but relevant and useful pieces of percussion, most of which can be found somewhere on our Yamaha AR organs, and reminding you of exactly where you can locate them.

Peter

Peter Anderson

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Over to Hoffnung....



I have personally, never tried oysters, as the very idea of swallowing them does not appeal to me, but those brave souls who have, rave over them.
Each to his own.

But I enjoy experimenting with the smorgasborg that I have to choose from on my Yamaha AR, as it brings that similar smile and contented feeling as you see in this chap's face.

Peter

Peter Anderson

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In the following Replies we mention some of the other percussion instruments, that you will find available in your Yamaha AR.
Some of these are defined in Gold Lettering (that is, if you can still read yours) in front of your Lower Keyboard, on the instrument panel, because they are assigned, with so many others, to the keys on your keyboards and pedalboard.

All these are available to you, for use in the Rhythm Part of your Accompaniment Program.

Here is Page 128 of your User Manual, which shows the precise position of them all, for you.


Many of these names you will recognise and know roughly what the instrument sounds like, but there are some that may be unfamiliar, so I have tried to include these more obscure instruments in the following Replies.

If you would like this to print out as a pdf document, then click this link:

Drum Assignment - Manual p128

Peter

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Claves are a percussion instrument (idiophone), consisting of a pair of short (about 20–30 cm (8–12 in), thick dowels.      Traditionally they are made of wood, typically rosewood, ebony or grenadilla.     


Claves   
In modern times they are also made of fibreglass or plastics.
When struck they produce a bright clicking noise.


Playing Claves (Sticks)
Claves are sometimes hollow and carved in the middle to amplify the sound.

Claves and Sticks on your Key Boards can be found at:
Claves @        Upper Keyboard     Eb 4
Side Stick @   Upper Keyboard     C# 1
Sticks @         Lower Keyboard     G# 1
Side Stick @   Lower Keyboard     C# 2
Sticks @         Pedalboard             G# 1
Side Stick @   Pedalboard             C# 2

Peter

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The Cabasa or Cabaça , similar to the shekere, is a percussion instrument that is constructed with loops of steel ball chain wrapped around a wide cylinder.      The cylinder is fixed to a long, narrow wooden or plastic handle.

The Cabaça made from a gourd was originally of African origin, and was called agbe, and is constructed from dried oval- or pear-shaped gourds with beads strung on the outer surface. 


Cabasas made from Gourds

There are many versions of this instrument, particularly in Latin music. 
Cabaça (pictured above), is used in Latin American Dance.   The Cabaça is a natural or synthetic round or pear-shaped gourd covered with a network of beads and mounted on a single handle.
This is compared to the metal version used in Latin Jazz music.

The metal cabasa was created by Martin Cohen, founder of Latin Percussion.     This company has built a more durable cabasa, which they call an afuche-cabasa

Afuche Cabasa

It provides a metallic, rattling sound when shaken or twisted, similar to the sound of a rattlesnake.     It is often used in Latin jazz, especially in bossa nova pieces.    Precise rhythmic effects can be gained by the advanced player.    The player places his non-dominant hand on the metal chain, to provide pressure, while holding the wooden handle with the other hand and twisting the instrument back and forth as per the rhythmic pattern desired. In addition to Latin music, many band and orchestra pieces call for the cabasa.

Modern schools seem to utilise any type of suitable container, with dried peas, seeds or small stones inside, to give even the youngest pupils, the opportunity to 'play' a musical instrument, and accompany the main musicians or singers!

Cabasas on your Key Boards can be found at:
Cabasa @     Upper Keyboard      A 3
Cabasa @     Lower Keyboard     A 4
Shaker @     Upper Keyboard      Bb 4
Maracas @   Upper Keyboard      Bb 3
Maracas @   Lower Keyboard     Bb 4                   

Peter

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Timbales or Pailas are shallow single-headed drums with metal casing.
They are shallower than single-headed tom-toms, and usually tuned much higher, especially for their size.   

The player (called a timbalero) uses a variety of stick strokes, rim shots, and rolls to produce a wide range of percussive expression during solos and at transitional sections of music, and usually plays the shells of the drum or auxiliary percussion such as a cowbell or cymbal to keep time in other parts of the song.


Timbales with Cow Bell         We look at Cow Bells in the next Reply.

The shells are referred to as cáscara (the Spanish word for shell), which is also the name of a rhythmic pattern common in salsa music that is played on the shells of the timbales.

The shells are usually made of metal, but some manufacturers offer shells of maple and other woods.

Timbalitos or pailitas are small timbales with diameters of 6″ (15 cm), 8″ (20 cm), or 10″ (25 cm).   
The timbalitos are used to play the part of the bongos with sticks and are not used to play the traditional timbales part.
Papaíto and Manny Oquendo were masters at playing the bongó part on timbalitos.   

Timbalitos are sometimes incorporated into expanded timbales set-ups, or incorporated into drum kits.

Timbales on your Key Boards can be found at:
Timbale H @   Upper Keyboard      F 3
Timbale L @   Upper Keyboard      F# 3
Timbale H @   Lower Keyboard      F 4
Timbale L @   Lower Keyboard      F# 4

Peter

Peter Anderson

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The Cowbell is an idiophone hand percussion instrument used in various styles of music including salsa and infrequently in popular music.

Cowbell

It is named after the similar bell historically used by herdsmen to keep track of the whereabouts of cows.

Tuned cowbells or Almglocken (as they called in German), sometimes known by the English translation alpine bells (or Alpenglocken in German), typically refer to bulbous brass bells that are used to play music, sometimes as a novelty act or tourist attraction in the northern Alps, and sometimes in classical music, as in Richard Strauss's Alpine Symphony.


Set of Tuned Cowbells

Since they are tuned differently, in order to distinguish individual animals, they can be collected "from the pasture" in random tunings, but commercial sets in equal temperament are also available.    The metal clapper is retained, and they sound much noisier than handbells, which are otherwise used similarly in ensembles.

Composers who included Almglocken among their musical palette include Tōru Takemitsu, Jo Kondo, Gustav Mahler, Richard Strauss, Roy Harter, John Adams, Joseph Schwantner, and Karlheinz Stockhausen.      Olivier Messiaen used multiple chromatic sets of clapperless cowbells in several of his compositions, notably "Et expecto resurrectionem mortuorum" and "Couleurs de la cité celeste".

Clapperless Cowbells are made of metal are an important element in Latin-American and go-go music.   These cowbells are struck with a stick – the tone being modulated by striking different parts of the bell and by damping with the hand holding the bell.

In several parts of the world (notably in West Africa) pairs or trios of clapperless bells are joined in such a way that they can be struck separately or clashed together.     The Brazilian name for these is agogo bells.

Cylindrical wood blocks played in the same way are also called Agogô, as we have seen above.   

In Cuban music the cowbell is called cencerro and often played by the same player as the bongos.

In Caribbean music two or three are often mounted together with a pair of timbales.   (As in the illustration above.)

This type of cowbell, when mounted in this way, can also be played with the foot using a modified bass drum pedal or even bowed with a double bass bow.

Cowbells and Agogos on your Key Boards can be found at:
Cowbell @   Upper Keyboard     G# 2
Cowbell @   Lower Keyboard     G# 3
Agogo H @   Upper Keyboard     G 3
Agogo L @   Upper Keyboard      G# 3
Agogo H @   Lower Keyboard     G 4
Agogo L @   Lower Keyboard      G# 4

Peter

Peter Anderson

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The Güiro (from the Spanish) is a Latin American percussion instrument consisting of an open-ended, hollow gourd with parallel notches cut in one side.

It is played by rubbing a stick or tines along the notches to produce a ratchet sound.


Güiro

The güiro is commonly used in Puerto Rican, Cuban and other forms of Latin American music, and plays a key role in the typical rhythm section of important genres like son, trova and salsa.

Playing the güiro usually requires both long and short sounds, made by scraping up and down in long or short strokes.

The güiro, like the maracas, is often played by a singer.    It is closely related to the Cuban Guayo and the Dominican Güira, which are made of metal.

Other instruments similar to the güiro are the Colombian guacharaca, the Brazilian Reco-reco, the Quijada (cow jawbone) and the Frottoir (washboard).

Güiros on your Key Boards can be found at:
Güiro Short @   Upper Keyboard     F# 4
Güiro Long @    Upper Keyboard     G 4

Peter

Peter Anderson

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The Cuíca is a Brazilian friction drum with a large pitch range, produced by changing tension on the head of the drum.   
 
Cuíca is Portuguese for the gray four-eyed opossum (Philander opossum) which is known for its high-pitched cry.   

The Cuica is frequently used in carnivals, as well as often in samba music.


Cuica

The tone it produces has a high-pitched squeaky timbre. It has been called a 'laughing gourd' due to this sound.     Many also liken its sound to that of a monkey.

Cuícas on your Key Boards can be found at:
Cuíca Mute@    Upper Keyboard     F# 4
Cuíca Open @   Upper Keyboard     G 4

I wonder how many of you, knew that you had access to a Cuica on your Yamaha AR?

Peter


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A Wood Block (also spelled as a single word, Woodblock) is a small slit drum made from a single piece of wood and used as a percussion instrument.

The term generally signifies the Western orchestral instrument, though it is related to the ban time-beaters used by the Han Chinese, which is why the Western instrument is sometimes referred to as a Chinese Woodblock.

Wood Block

Alternative names sometimes used in ragtime and jazz are Clog Box and Tap Box.

In orchestral music scores, wood blocks may be indicated by the French Bloc de bois or Tambour de bois, German Holzblock or Holzblocktrommel, or Italian Cassa di legno.

The orchestral wood-block instrument of the West is generally made from teak or another hardwood.     The dimensions of this instrument vary, although it is either a rectangular or cylindrical block of wood with one or sometimes two longitudinal cavities.    It is played by striking it with a stick, which produces a sharp crack.   
Alternatively, a rounder mallet, soft or hard, may be used, which produces a deeper-pitched and fuller "knocking" sound.

In a drum kit, a woodblock was traditionally mounted on a clamp fixed to the top of the rear rim of the bass drum.

Wood Blocks on your Key Boards can be found at:
Wood Block H @   Upper Keyboard     E 4
Wood Block L @   Upper Keyboard     F 4


Peter

Peter Anderson

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The Temple Block is a percussion instrument originating in eastern Asia, where it is used in religious ceremonies.    It may also be referred to as a Chinese Block, Korean Klock, or rarely as a Skull.

It is a carved hollow wooden instrument with a large slit.    In its traditional form, the shape is somewhat bulbous but modern instruments are rectangular in shape.

Several blocks of varying sizes are often used together to give a variety of pitches.   They are usually found in orchestras, like this as a set of five.

Temple Blocks


They are pitched, so each one sounds different to the others, but they are not tuned to a specific pitch.   

In Western music, their use can be traced back to early jazz drummers, and they are also used in modern orchestral music, where they are called Dragons' Mouths.

The sound of temple blocks is similar to that of wood blocks, although temple blocks have a darker, more "hollow" timbre.

Temple blocks can be heard in Leroy Anderson's The Syncopated Clock.

The rock band Rush featured temple blocks in their songs "Xanadu" and "The Trees," played by drummer Neil Peart.

An updated version of traditional wooden temple blocks are so-called granite blocks.   Despite the name, they are not made of stone, but of plastic.

Peter