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Oh dear, you must never have heard a synapse-fusing "Drums" segment from a Grateful Dead show...poor boy...(jump to 1:25)


and learn about the modern age's most magnificent percussive performer, student, researcher, activitist, and historian...

 

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The thing that most people get confused with is the difference between a percussionist and a drummer. A percussionist can also be a drummer, but a drummer is not always a percussionist.
To expand on that point. A percussionsit can play a range of instruments, not just your typical drumkit. It can include timpani, mallet percussion (xylophone, glockenspiel, marimba, etc.), cymbals, gongs and random untuned percussion instruments.
A drummer is focussed on the main drumkit, accompanying a band or group and most that i have come across don't have any idea how to read sheet music or written melody parts which a percussionist would know.

Yes at times is can get boring (counting 202 bars in a sibelius piece to hit one note is boring) but it can also be incredible fun and rewarding. With such a wide range of instruments, larger than any other section, we can basically do anything. Also i find that percussionists have more freedom. We can eat up the back whilst others a practicing and go almost anywhere we want to because we are expected to be always making adjustments to all of our instruments of moving some around.

So yes at times percussion can be boring but it is also fun (film scores have HEAPS OF PERCUSSION). however donm't mix up a percussionist and a drummer, because they are not the same thing :)
 

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Having now played orchestral percussion for almost two years, I would agree with most of what MelodicHarmony has to say -- especially the part about being able to snack during rehearsal while the strings are wondering when they're ever going to get a break. :D

I would just add that I've found that counting rests is a skill that's every bit as challenging, and can be every bit as involving, as playing any of the actual instruments. Just because you're not playing doesn't mean you're not doing anything.
 

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I believe the factor of something becoming boring is related to interest. If you truly love percussion or just drumming, you can never get bored of it. As professional drummer, I explore new ways of composing music every time I use the drum; which gets me even more interested and allured towards this magnificent musical instrument. My love for drumming grows more every day.
 

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The powerful deep vibe of a bass/sub-bass concert drum is long wave in it's development . Isn't it a fascinating challenge to get that sound to the conductor's ear at the same time as a piccolo ?
 

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They just hit the drums A few times. Again no offsense intended
Having been a member of an orchestral percussion section I can assure it involves more than that. No offense taken. The Shosty 5th is a great example of how a good composer writes effectively for percussion in a symphonic work. The last few minutes tell the story better than I ever could.
 

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This recording cheats as the piece calls for 4 percussionists with a total of 16 drums, but you'll get the gist

 

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I think that depends on what you're playing. If it is traditional marching style concert music, yeah it can get boring. More modern pieces can be a lot of fun because they'll use a lot of experimental percussive instruments - sometimes a bit too experimental though haha.

My college wind symphony allows the percussion do to their own solo song apart from the larger ensemble to begin every concert. Those songs are always a lot of fun.
 

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Playing percussion CAN be amazing, and it can be a lot of fun, complex, challenging and all that. Even in something like the Liszt piano concerto no. 1, the Dvorak New World, Brahms 4th where you don't get to play much. But what makes those frustrating are the rehearsals, especially with a conductor who goes in order and you have to wait around. That gets boring really fast.
 
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