Fix It: Snare Drum Rolls Teaching Tips

Close your eyes for a moment and imagine a time when you were conducting on the podium and cued a much anticipated, exposed and important snare drum roll. What did it sound like?

Continue reading
  2496 Hits
2496 Hits

Enhance Snare Drum Performance with Instrument Selection, Preparation and Tuning

I clearly remember the first time I heard – or rather, felt – a snare drum. It was during the annual Memorial Day parade in my hometown of Montville, Connecticut, and I was no more than 5 years old. 

Continue reading
  1692 Hits
1692 Hits

Four Steps in Caring for Mallet Percussion Instruments

After a semester of percussion activities, it’s time to assess all your instruments, including marimbas, vibraphones and xylophones, and take proactive steps to protect your equipment.

Continue reading
  2577 Hits
2577 Hits

6 Keys to Creating a Game Plan for Your Ensemble

I approach teaching like a coach would their sports team. As music educators, we must always remind ourselves that music is an activity — it is an ACTIVE pastime for students. 

Continue reading
  1920 Hits
1920 Hits

Pick the Right Drumsticks and Mallets

A percussionist’s gig bag brims with sticks, mallets, brushes, keys, heads and tape. When choosing the implements to include in their arsenal, drummers have important factors to consider.

Continue reading
  1444 Hits
1444 Hits

10 Tips to Start a Middle School Drumline

Middle school band is often where students begin their musical journey. It is a time when the three basic elements of music — rhythm, melody and harmony — begin to take shape and make sense to students. 

Continue reading
  4411 Hits
4411 Hits

Deconstructing Mallets: Find the Best Mallets for Your Percussion Section

Once upon a time, mallet choices were limited. The hardness of a mallet was the most dramatic way to change the sound of an instrument. 

Continue reading
  4903 Hits
4903 Hits

Setting Up Jazz Figures on the Drum Set

How do you treat figures on the drum chart in big band and small group jazz? I want to provide some clarity for those of you who are jazz band educators who do not play the drum set.

Continue reading
  7861 Hits
7861 Hits

Timpani Maintenance: Three Common Problems and How to Fix Them

The percussion family consists of vast number of instruments. In a standard music room, there will be timpani, marimbas, xylophones, bells, snare drum, bass drum, cymbals, tambourines, triangles and much more. 

Continue reading
  5609 Hits
5609 Hits

Free Yamaha Mallet Resource Guide

We created the Yamaha Mallet Resource Guide to act as an effective supplement to any classroom method book. 

Continue reading
  2926 Hits
2926 Hits

Reflections on Being Colleagues and Friends -- Eric Shin and Jauvon Gilliam

In Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin: Performers, Teachers and Entrepreneurs, we outlined how percussionists Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin balance teaching, performing and running their own businesses. 

Continue reading
  1788 Hits
1788 Hits

Case Study: Summer Percussion Camp in Fort Worth

You can feel the enthusiasm and hear the reverberating sound of music and movement. Every summer, 75 high school students in Fort Worth, Texas, hone their percussion skills. 

Continue reading
  3083 Hits
3083 Hits

Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin: Performers, Teachers and Entrepreneurs

Jauvon Gilliam and Eric Shin aren't well acquainted with the oft-repeated saying, "When one door closes, another opens."  For this powerhouse percussion duo, opportunity repeatedly knocks, and doors keep opening wide.

Continue reading
  2797 Hits
2797 Hits

How to Change Timpani Drum Heads

Timpani heads do not need to be changed very often – we recommend every 1 to 2 years – but it's still important for band directors to know how to change them. 

Continue reading
  3764 Hits
3764 Hits

How to Choose the Right Mallet

Imagine that it's a new school year, a new band/ensemble season, and the percussionist arrives to rehearsal to see what music is in store for the first concert.

Continue reading
  42963 Hits
42963 Hits

Teaching Musicality to Percussionists

As an educator, I have never understood why young percussionists are not taught more about musicality. My wife is a flute teacher, and she teaches musicality to kids in sixth grade. 

Continue reading
  3099 Hits
3099 Hits

10 Things to Know When Buying Front Ensemble Equipment

Good things come in waves. After a few years at a new high school, your marching band is going great. The booster program is very active and has been raising money. 

Continue reading
  6967 Hits
6967 Hits

Build Teamwork with Drum Circles

On the first day of school, students may come to band class and sit timidly, not making eye contact. If the teacher facilitates a drum circle, then by the end of class, everyone will be smiling and bubbling with excitement.

Continue reading
  5049 Hits
5049 Hits

Pablo Rieppi and the Art of Practicing

In the blog post, Pablo Rieppi's Passion for Percussion, we learned of Rieppi's nearly nonstop practicing regimen through his college days. To keep daily practice from becoming tedious, Rieppi recommends the following:

Continue reading
  3134 Hits
3134 Hits

Pablo Rieppi’s Passion for Percussion

World-renowned percussionist Pablo Rieppi decided to teach himself to play drums as a junior in high school.

Continue reading
  3025 Hits
3025 Hits

Have a question or a suggestion for an article you’d like to see here? Email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Copyright © 2021 Yamaha Corporation of America and Yamaha Corporation. All rights reserved. Terms of Use |  Privacy Policy