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Snare Drum / Multi-Percussion Solos and Duets

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The Third Half of the Circle

multi-percussion solo with CD accompaniment
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Composer: Gene Fambrough
Publisher: Innovative Percussion, Inc.
Instrumentation: Low E Marimba, Vibraphone (pedal fixed down), Crotales (low octave – DO NOT use high octave), Large (22") and Medium (18") Chinese Cymbals China Splash (8") or similar effect cymbal, Large and Small Log Drums (multiple pitches), 2 Mark Trees (double row if possible), Multiple sets of Metal Wind Chimes (various pitch ranges and timbres)

Program Notes:
The concept behind this work is for the performer to accompany him / herself on marimba through the use of sustaining metal instruments, sounding like multiple performers within a solo work. When multiple vibraphones are available, choose the instrument with the longest sustain. It is necessary to use the low octave of crotales for best sustain.

This is a multiple percussion work with a brief section of CD accompaniment. The work is scored for marimba (low E), vibraphone, crotales, cymbals, log drums, and multiple sets of wind chimes. The composer states that the general premise of the work is the ability of the marimbist to accompany himself with longer resonating metallic instruments. It begins with a free section emphasizing mark tree, cymbals and crotales. The marimba emerges from this texture with sixteenth-note triplets that suggest the primary theme of the work. After a brief interlude of cymbals, crotales and vibraphone, the sixteenth-note figures return in the marimba, with punctuating, long tones on the crotales. This section continues for a while, finally yielding to a transitional segment of linear figures in the marimba, culminating in an explosive run to the top of the instrument. The tension it creates is quickly released in the ensuing chorale section. Here again, the performer is asked to sustain notes in the marimba via independent roll, while the other hand plays figures on the vibes and crotales. The CD accompaniment begins at the end of this section. The performer begins to improvise in the style of the opening of the work over the gong, cymbal and drum sounds on the recording. The marimba re-enters with groovy sixteenth notes over the recorded drum sounds. The rhythms in the marimba part become increasingly syncopated as the intensity builds, then gradually wind down into a short, improvised section on log drums. As the CD fades away, the performer is left playing sparse figures on the resonant metal sounds. The work ends with three, very soft rolled chords in the marimba with a single, introspective note on the crotales as a finale. The mixture of coloristic and rhythmic devices used in this work make is interesting for the performer and the listener. - Scott Herring Percussive Notes, April 2006

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Gene Fambrough Gene Fambrough
University of Alabama-Birmingham
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