Part 1 - Project 2, Projects

Project 2 – duets

Today, I focused on writing a small study for two percussionists. These were for tenor and snare drum. I called it Rhythmic Mathematic. I wrote this study in 5/4 because I needed an odd number of beats to achieve what I wanted. Additionally when writing in 5/4 it means I can compose a more original phrasing that is slightly longer and possibly more complicated then any common time compositions.

The study starts with one rhythmic idea on one instrument (the snare). This phrase is then repeated on the third beat of bar 1. This sets in to motion my plan to cross – over the rhythms on the different lines. On the second beat of bar 2 I introduce the second rhythmic pattern on the snare part. The tenor drum repeats the first pattern on beat 4 of the second bar. It isn’t until bar 3 where the first cross over happens.

On beat 5 of the third bar the snare drum phase is completed by the  tenor drum that is starting its phrase (which is my second rhythmic figure composed in bar 2) the same happens on beat 2 of the fourth bar  as the tenor drum fills in the gap in the rhythm from the snare phrase. This also happens on beats 1 and 5 of the fifth bar it happens one final time on the 2nd beat of the last bar as the snare plays the 8th notes that is the start of the phrase for the tenor drum.

I accented the beats because I wanted to keep a strict 5 pulse as otherwise it would be difficult to hear there are 5 beats to a bar. The 3/5 bar helped me to shorten a phrase to bring the study to a final stop. It also allowed me to play both rhythms one final time.


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