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Rockbox

for percussion ensemble
Level: Med-Easy
Duration: 2:45
Personnel: 9 players
State Lists: Florida
Release Date: 2023
Product ID : TSPCE23-012
Price: $37.00
Item #: TSPCE23-012

Formats Available:


Description

Rockbox by Brian Slawson is an enthusiastic piece for percussion ensemble designed to develop the "weak" hand of developing drummers and percussionists. For many players, the left hand is weaker and underutilized to compensate. This piece seeks to address that with all descending lines starting and ending with the left hand. Intended as a tongue-in-cheek throwback to the disco era, Rockbox is a piece that students and audiences will love! It is a great tool for young percussionists and college methods courses, as well.

Rockbox ships as a printed, professionally bound score and includes individual parts in PDF format for printing or tablet viewing.

Instrumentation

Glockenspiel

Vibraphone

Chimes

Xylophone

2 Marimbas — (1) low A, (1) 4-octave

4 Timpani

Drumset

Reviews

“Rockbox” is a piece with a purpose: as explained in the program notes, it brings together Bach and disco in the pursuit of developing students’ left-hand technique. As such, the under-three-minute piece is a quick romp that might find itself equally at home on a young percussion ensemble concert or in the parking lot as part of a front ensemble warm-up routine.

Maintaining good balance will be a challenge for young percussionists, as the temptation to overplay the drum set and timpani parts will be high, but the focus really should remain with the keyboards (particularly the first two marimba parts, which carry the bulk of the melodic content borrowed from Bach).

“Rockbox” is fun and quirky, and is self-aware enough to know when it’s time to move on or else be done. If more advanced students were involved, I could easily envision an opportunity to expand on certain sections’ harmonic changes and create space for improvisation. Otherwise, the piece is concise and effective while allowing a bit of subversive joyfulness to infect the process of technical development.

—Brian Graiser
Percussive Notes
Vol. 61, No. 5, October 2023

Description

Rockbox by Brian Slawson is an enthusiastic piece for percussion ensemble designed to develop the "weak" hand of developing drummers and percussionists. For many players, the left hand is weaker and underutilized to compensate. This piece seeks to address that with all descending lines starting and ending with the left hand. Intended as a tongue-in-cheek throwback to the disco era, Rockbox is a piece that students and audiences will love! It is a great tool for young percussionists and college methods courses, as well.

Rockbox ships as a printed, professionally bound score and includes individual parts in PDF format for printing or tablet viewing.

Instrumentation

Glockenspiel

Vibraphone

Chimes

Xylophone

2 Marimbas — (1) low A, (1) 4-octave

4 Timpani

Drumset

Reviews

“Rockbox” is a piece with a purpose: as explained in the program notes, it brings together Bach and disco in the pursuit of developing students’ left-hand technique. As such, the under-three-minute piece is a quick romp that might find itself equally at home on a young percussion ensemble concert or in the parking lot as part of a front ensemble warm-up routine.

Maintaining good balance will be a challenge for young percussionists, as the temptation to overplay the drum set and timpani parts will be high, but the focus really should remain with the keyboards (particularly the first two marimba parts, which carry the bulk of the melodic content borrowed from Bach).

“Rockbox” is fun and quirky, and is self-aware enough to know when it’s time to move on or else be done. If more advanced students were involved, I could easily envision an opportunity to expand on certain sections’ harmonic changes and create space for improvisation. Otherwise, the piece is concise and effective while allowing a bit of subversive joyfulness to infect the process of technical development.

—Brian Graiser
Percussive Notes
Vol. 61, No. 5, October 2023


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