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Cadences and exercises

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#1 Bob984


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Posted 15 April 2012 - 01:50 PM

I was thinking about "the old days" regarding corps entering and exiting the contest field, and retreats.
At some senior shows, and I believe some still do....drumlines played cadences onto the field, and on the
pass in review as well.
Whereas the tradition is still around on the pass in review, and we sometimes have one drumline play the corps
or drum majors onto the field in the case of a full or partial retreat, there has been one development that has bothered
me with some corps.......
For me, the best cadences had a solid feel and you could easily march to them, and they were not usually too long.
This was true for both Sr. and Jr. corps.....some that come into mind are SCV's bass drum beat, Cavaliers bass drum beat,
Bridgemen's cadence...........
However, today, I do believe some arrangers choose to make it a "drum solo", and the more complex the rhythms, the
"better".......difficult for even their own corps to feel or march to, let alone others. Many are also quite long as well.
Maybe I'm "old", but I think that they may be better off playing something that "grooves" (you can still show some chops
in doing so), that anyone who can feel 4/4 can march to, and is short, sweet, and to the point.....I'm not holding my
breath that anyone who writes will consider this, though.........
I am also a bit amused at the "exercise" procedure that some drumlines incorporate......it is not unusual to hear
exercises that are incredibly complex (ie "solos"), that are in meters that they wouldn't dare try to put on the field,
and frankly, I am not sure of the focus. I have asked some on this, and they say that it is "mental preparation". I don't
understand how warming up on something difficult that isn't remotely related to your show content helps you play a better show. I have
seen some great lines playing this stuff warming up, then they go into the show and "tick" (lol) on check patterns. Again,
I may be "old school", but perhaps playing exercises that improve your fundamentals, uniformity, and listening skills, playing
exercises that actually pertain to what you play in the show, and then doing reps on portions of the show would be a better use
of time/effort.


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