May 2015 Posts

Drum and Bugle Corps 2015 Season

bluecoats-snares

As the school year comes to an end the drum and bugle corps season is just beginning. Drum and bugle corps are marching ensembles (brass, percussion, and color guard) that travel throughout the country each summer rehearsing and performing in competitions. If you’re unfamiliar with the activity, watch this brief introduction.

 

 

There are many opportunities to see drum and bugle corps in competition in Indiana and surrounding states. Here is a partial list of events. Be sure to check out the event information at www.dci.org .

 

June 15th, Indianapolis – DCI Dress Rehearsal

Madison Scouts

Troopers

 

June 17th – Indianapolis – DCI Premiere

Bluecoats

The Cadets

The Cavaliers

Carolina Crown

Blue Stars

Madison Scouts

 

June 19th – Louisville, KY – DCI Louisville presented by DeMoulin Bros.

The Cadets

The Cavaliers

Blue Stars

Madison Scouts

Crossmen

Troopers

Spirit of Atlanta

Cincinnati Tradition

 

June 22nd – Hamilton, OH – Summer Music Games in Cincinnati

Bluecoats

Carolina Crown

Blue Stars

Boston Crusaders

Madison Scouts

Troopers

Spirit of Atlanta

Cincinnati Tradition

 

June 24th – Evansville – Drums on the Ohio

The Cadets

The Cavaliers

Crossmen

Colts

Spirit of Atlanta

Pioneer

Racine Scouts

 

June 26th – Muncie – DCI Central Indiana

The Cadets

Bluecoats

Carolina Crown

The Cavaliers

Blue Stars

Madison Scouts

Boston Crusaders

Crossmen

 

June 27th – Michigan City – Pageant of Drums

The Cavaliers

The Cadets

Boston Crusaders

Crossmen

Spirit of Atlanta

Genesis

Legends

 

July 8th – Fort Wayne – DCI Ft. Wayne

Blue Devils

Carolina Crown

Crossmen

Jersey Surf

Genesis

 

July 12th – DeKalb, IL – Tour of Champions, Northern Illinois

Phantom Regiment

Carolina Crown

The Cadets

The Cavaliers

Santa Clara Vanguard

Boston Crusaders

Blue Devils

 

July 25th – Hamilton, OH – Hamilton Drum Corps Classic

Blue Devils B

Spartans

7th Regiment

Legends

Raiders

Coastal Surge

Les Stentors

Cincinnati Tradition

 

The season will conclude in Indiana during the week of August 3rd. Open Class corps will compete in Michigan City on August 3rd and 4th. Look for us at the World Class champsionships at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis on August 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th.

 

The drum corps season is a great chance to see the most exciting and innovative performances in the marching arts. With plenty of shows in and around Indiana, there’s no reason to miss the action!

 

www.dci.org




May News at Chops

If you aren’t signed up for our Chop Transmission emails, you may be missing out on the most update happenings around the store.  Below is the May edition of the transmission.  If you don’t receive our emails, you can sign up here!

Fresh Update to our Demo Gear List

 

Demo Gear at Chops Percusssion

Several items have been added to our demo list and a lot has been removed. Head on over to our Demo Page to check out the latest listings.

View the entire list on our website.


Drum Set and Marimba Rentals

 

Pearl Export drum set rental at Chops Percussion

Don’t forget that we have a great line-up of percussion instrument rentals to help take your students to the next level. We have drum sets, marimbas, and xylophones available. Use the summer time to increase your skills!

Check out the full lineup on our website.


Drum Tuning Aids

 

Drum Tuning Aids

Recently, Glen Allman followed up on his series on snare drum care and maintenance with an introduction to drum tuning aides.

Just like playing drums, it takes practice and experience to learn to tune them well. Fortunately, there are several products that can simplify and remove the guesswork from the process.

Head over to our news page to read more about the products we recommend.


B.B. King – Facts About The Blues Legend

 

B.B. King Facts

We lost a legend in the music world this past week. Click here to learn some facts about B.B. King that you may not have known.

RIP B.B. King.


Store Closed Monday, May 25, 2015

 

Chops closed on Monday, May 25, 2015 in observance of Memorial Day.

Chops Percussion will be closed on Monday, May 25, 2015 in observance of Memorial Day. We will resume normal hours on Tuesday the 26th. Have a great weekend!




Drum Tuning Aids

Welcome back to the Chops blog! Today we’re going to follow up on our series on snare drum care and maintenance with an introduction to drum tuning aides.

In the final post on snare drum maintenance we discussed the subjective nature of drum tuning. Ask ten different drummers their opinions on tuning and you’ll get ten different answers!

Just like playing drums, it takes practice and experience to learn to tune them well. Fortunately, there are several products that can simplify and remove the guesswork from the process. We recommend the Drum Dial and Tune-Bot.

tuning-aides

The Drum Dial  is a “timpanic pressure meter” that measures drum head tension. By simply placing it on the drum head you can easily read its tension and then tune accordingly. Check it out in action here:

We’ve found that with a little practice the Drum Dial makes tuning easy and consistent. We also like that it allows you to remove a head and tune it’s replacement to the same pitch. A customer recently told us that he relies on his Drum Dial to tune his drums accurately, especially in noisy environments when he can’t hear clearly.

We also carry the Tune-Bot, a newer tuning aid. It is an electronic device that works much like a tuner for pitched instruments. You can use it to tune your drums to a specific pitch, and match lug pitches. It also includes the ability to record and store your tuning preferences for future use.

While tuning drums is a skill that takes time and practice to develop, the Drum Dial and Tune-Bot are great tools to simplify the process. We’ve used, and recommend both to all percussionists. Contact us  to pick up a Drum Dial or Tune-Bot today!




Snare Drum Maintenance Part 5 – Installing Wires and Tuning

Welcome to the fifth and final post in our series on snare drum maintenance. Last time we discussed how to properly install new heads. Today we’ll finish the process by tuning the drum and reinstalling the snare wires.

Before we begin, it should be noted that unlike other instruments, tuning drums is a matter of personal preference. While there are general guidelines to tuning drums, every drummer will tune their drums differently depending on their touch, technique, equipment, experience, and the style of music they are playing. Here are our recommendations.

With the new heads installed, it’s time to begin tuning. Use the cross pattern we introduced in our previous lesson to gradually bring the up the tension on the top and bottom heads.

Use a drum key to turn each tension rod 90°, or a quarter turn. After turning all the tension rods, repeat the pattern several times until there is a moderate amount of tension on the head. Repeat this process on the bottom head.

After you’ve put a moderate amount of tension on each head, use the cross pattern as described above, but with much smaller adjustments to the tension rods to fine tune the drum. Make small adjustments until the drum is tuned to your preference.

I recommend tuning the bottom head significantly higher than the top head. This relationship will provide great snare wire response while limiting sympathetic vibrations.

After you’ve tuned up both heads, it’s time to reinstall the snare wires. Begin by setting the wires on the head. Insert the straps or cords to the butt plate and tighten them down.

02-wires-in-place

Turn off the snare strainer and use the knob or lever to loosen it until it almost comes apart. Insert the straps or cords into the snare strainer then use your fingers to tighten them in place.

03-wire-set-01

Turn on the strainer. With the straps held in by finger tension they will slip through the strainer as you turn it on. Notice the difference between the snare cord in the prior picture, and the picture below.

04-wire-set-02

Finally, use your drum key to lock the wires into the strainer and adjust the snare strainer.

As we mentioned before, tuning a snare drum is a subjective process. The steps outlined above, and in previous posts, are recommendations based on our experience and preferences. You might have a totally different method, but that’s the beauty of tuning drums: there’s no absolute correct method. If it sounds good and works for you, it’s correct!

Please contact us with questions about tuning drums, recommendations on heads and snare wires, and with your own tuning methods. We look forward to hearing from you!