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Suggested Reading

1. Rehearsal Rooms

Struggling to improve the acoustics in your band room? Check out how the Medan Band did it.

2. Concerned about playing swing music properly?

Check out my guidelines

3. Ear training exercises for bands

Unlike piano players, ear training is essential for wind band performers. But how many band directors bother to give their bands suitable exercises?

4. Intonation problems

While tuning is simple act of adjusting a length of tubing on a wind instrument (often by reference to a single note), intonation is an ongoing process in which a player strives to match the pitch of others in the ensemble during performance. 

5. “Blowing” a wind instrument

A common misconception among wind players is to believe that the air moves through the instrument in order to produce the sound. This is simply not true. 

6. Conducting – suggestions for home practice

The best way for a conductor to improve is in front of a live ensemble. The unfortunate reality, however, is that this is not always possible. Aspiring conductors therefore have little choice but to find other ways of honing their skills.

 

Introduction (Beginning to section 1)

The first six bars consist of a series of highly dissonant chords built over concert B-flat and concert A-flat.  It is interesting that, while no particular tonal centre seems to be implied from the point of view of traditional harmony, the movement on either side of concert A (which is later defined as the tonic) is typical of many jazz progressions at a final cadence.  The overall effect, however, is primarily percussive. All this changes when we get to section 1, which is built almost entirely on an Em7b5 chord.  The point at which this chord is introduced (first measure of section 1) is therefore very important and should be emphasized.  The tension is heightened by the introduction of the ninth in the brass chord two bars before section two (bar 12 and 13).  The resolution of this chord on the first beat of the first bar in section two establishes the tonic as A.

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