Monthly Archives: March 2020

Music To Your Ears…Part II

Peter Naughton is at it again. His second piece for percussion ensemble has just been published and is available for purchase through Tapspace, the go-to for all creative percussionists. In his own words:

“When writing Waiting to Exhale, I tried to convey a sense of constant motion and excitement for the listener. I drew inspiration from the Dave Matthews Band, attempting to capture their intense energy and subtle yet distinct harmonic sensibilities. With its relentless 16th note motor, this piece relies heavily on interlocking rhythmic cells to create a larger, composite rhythm.

Originally written in 2017 for a small jazz combo consisting of vibraphone, steel pan, marimba, upright bass, and drum set, I felt there was a lack of rhythmic and timbral clarity among the instruments. In early 2019, I re-orchestrated the piece for marimba quartet, resulting in tighter rhythmic precision and a homogenous color.”

To directors of high school and college-level bands…it’s never too early to start planning ahead for your fall percussion ensemble concerts. Consider introducing this piece to your advanced musicians. They’ll love it and your audiences will be enthralled. I guarantee!

Oh and if you’re wondering why this is Part II, check out Naughton’s first piece, Two Rivers, also available through Tapspace.

Check them out now at:

https://www.tapspace.com/percussion-ensemble/waiting-to-exhale

https://www.tapspace.com/marimba-xylophone/two-rivers

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A Parting Glass To Mom And Dad

CELTIC TRINITY KNOTWith St. Patrick’s Day upon us, my thoughts naturally turn to my favorite South Side Irishmen. While the day, and in this case, the weekend, is filled with the usual nod to our Irish ancestry, celebrating with parades, rebel songs, beer and plenty of corned beef, a part of me always feels a bit wistful, as memories turn to my parents, no longer here to join in the festivities.  And so, to them, I raise a parting glass in salute.

My dad, John Casey Toner, better known as Jack to his friends, passed away a couple of months shy of my twenty-fifth birthday.  Though I was married with a toddler, I was still a daddy’s girl.  It wasn’t really fair, I know.  My sister, eight years older than me, had been surrounded by boys until my arrival and served as a second mother to us all in her never-ending efforts to help our mom cope with her brood.  In fact, one of my sister’s favorite memories was when she and my brothers were sent off to stay with my cousins as they eagerly awaited the newest arrival in the family (me, coming in at number six).  She asked my dad to please let her be the first to know if she had a new sister (for which she had been fervently praying) or another brother (to which she’d resigned herself).  Upon my entrance into the world, my dad telephoned with the news.  When my aunt excitedly answered the phone and asked the obvious question, he told her that he needed to speak with Mary Beth first.  That was the kind of man he was.  The simple, innocent promise made to an eight-year-old girl took precedence over all else.  When you’re the baby girl in a family, it’s hard not to be spoiled.  So, while my sister was relegated to the role of second mother to us all, including yet another little brother bringing up the rear, I happily assumed the role of the baby girl.

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