Upgrade your instrument today!

Hello! My name is Brian Travelsted, and I am the Percussion Specialist at Chops Percussion. Chops is the drum and percussion division of Paige’s Music. If you’re still renting your child’s beginning percussion kit from Paige’s and it’s no longer being used, I want to let you know about our upgrade rent-to-own options.

To see what we have to offer, please visit this link: https://www.chopspercussion.com/run?useUX=true&id=8&opid=712&_tid=475  here you will find all of your upgrade options, along with pictures and pricing information. You can also apply up to 18 months of your payments on your current instrument towards your new rental, which can lower your monthly payment!

If your child is showing a high level of commitment to percussion, now is the time to upgrade their instrument and take their playing to the next level. Please call 317-813-2070 or email sales@chopspercussion.com for more information. We look forward to helping the percussionist in your home get an instrument they’ll love playing for years to come!

Tips for Success – Additional Beginning Band Resources

We know that many schools will using a beginning method book that works alongside of a book that is used by the other instruments in the band program, but we would like to highlight some additional resources you can use with your new drummers! Often times the beginning percussion method books can take it a little to slow and using additional books along side those will allow your beginning percussion students to stay engaged and work from books written specifically for their instruments. While the beginning band method books will cover many of the same topices and have tried and true success, we feel using something extra will go a long way in helping your percussion students progress at a faster pace, without losing any useful knowledge. Below are some excellent books that we feel complement the book you may already be using:

Simple Steps to Successful Snare Drumming by Kennan Wylie

Simple Steps to Successful Mallets and More Percussion by Keenan Wylie

Simple Steps to Successful Beginning Percussion by Kennan Wylie

A Fresh Approach to the Snare Drum by Mark Wessels

A Fresh Approach to Mallet Percussion by Mark Wessels

Rhythm Reading for Drums (Part 1) by Garwood Whaley

Alfred Drum Method Book 1 by Sandy Fieldstein and Dave Black

Progressive Steps to Syncopation for the Modern Drummer by Ted Reed

Many of these books also include some type of play a long aspect now that makes it not only great for classroom use but fun for the students to practice at home. If you would like more specifics on what we might recommend based on the book you are currently using, give us a call and we can lead you in the right direction!

(317) 813-2070


email: chops@chopspercussion.com


What Mallets/Sticks Are Good for a New Percussionist?

Although many schools already pick what mallets want their beginners to start on for the first year of band, we thought we would take a minute and highlight different options that are great for the beginning percussionist. Whether you are looking to replace a pair of mallets as a parent or wondering what options are out there as a director, this information will help you understand the different mallet options needed as well as comparative models that are available.

Most schools will start by requiring your student to have a synthetic or rubber mallet  that they will primarily use on their student level instrument (bells or xylophone). They will also have a pair of drum sticks required along with a stick bag for easily transporting the sticks and mallets to and from school. Additionally, some schools will also want you to have a yarn mallet for marimba/vibraphone.

Bell/Xylophone Mallets

Mallets for bells and xylophone can be made of various kinds of synthetic or rubber materials and typically have a birch or rattan shaft. We typically recommend birch shaft for beginners as it tends to be more cost effective and feels better for students when playing on starter instruments. Mallets will also have varying degrees of hardness which will affect the tone, volume, and sound of the instrument, so we tend to recommended options that give a medium hardness that is good for use on both the bells and xylophone.

Recommended Synthetic/Rubber Mallets

  • Vic Firth M14 (synthetic), M5 (rubber)
  • Innovative Percussion F12 (synthetic), F8.5 (rubber)
  • Mike Balter BB11 (synthetic), BB8 (rubber)
  • Saylers Percussion E80 (synthetic), E60 (rubber)

Yarn Marimba/Vibraphone Mallets

Mallets used on the marimba are often made of yarn and have a birch shaft. While often times vibraphone mallets are made of a thinner cord material and a rattan shaft, the yarn mallets you get for the marimba could be used for the first few years of being a percussionist. The great thing about yarn mallets is you can also use them on other instruments such as suspended cymbals. Again we would tend to recommend something with a medium hardness for a beginner, as it can be used in any range of the instrument.

Recommended Yarn Mallets

  • Vic Firth M3
  • Innovative Percussion F1.5
  • Mike Balter BB22
  • Saylers Percussion

Drum Sticks

Your director will also want you to have a good pair of concert snare drum sticks to use when working on your drumming skills. The stick models below are great for beginners due to their design and weight. They are all slightly different but any choice would be excellent for a beginner and even a professional player.

Recommended Drum Sticks

  • Vic Firth SD1 General
  • Innovative Percussion IP-LD Lalo Davila
  • Innovative Percussion IP-1 General
  • Innovative Percussion IP-KW Kennan Wylie
  • Promark SD1 General

While every school and director will have their personal preference for what they would like for you to use, any of the above options would be a great substitute if another particular model is out of stock or may take a while to come in on a backorder. While we try to keep these options in stock at all time, you would still want to check with the director to make sure these substitute options would work for your director. If you ever need any further assistance or need a replacement for a beginner give us a call and we can help you find what you need.

Email: chops@chopspercussion.com

Phone: 317-813-2070

Tips for Summer Success – Rudimental Online Resources

As we continue with summer, we would like to highlight some great online resources that can help you on your musical journey. We believe that a big key to improvement is finding additional things you can be working on outside of your normal practice routine in preparation for school, auditions, marching season, etc. With the vast number or resources you can find online these days, here are a few that we feel offer variety, challenge, and FUN!!

Vic Firth Education – https://vicfirth.zildjian.com/education.html

This resource by Vic Firth is full of rudimental breakdowns, play along tracks, videos with tips and tricks and best of all it is free. With the variety of tools this site offers it is great for the beginner looking to start from scratch or the seasoned pro looking to take their playing to the next level.

Grid Book Percussion – https://www.gridbookpercussion.com/

Grid Book Percussion has many great online resources and while they offer many tools and books for a subscription fee, it is well worth the price. They also have tools for the beginner and advanced players looking to take the next step in their playing. Their YouTube channel has excellent play along tracks as well. This is a great resource for a drummer looking to prepare for a drum corps or indoor percussion audition with options for one-on-one instruction. We highly recommend these guys for the advanced player looking to up their level of playing.

Lot Hype – https://lothype.com/transcriptions/

This is a cut and dry resource that has sheet music from different DCI/WGI groups from past years and it is free to download. While these transcriptions are not from the source or arranger themselves in many cases, it is a great tool for someone looking to learn a few “licks” here and there. Easy to use and easy to get started. Check out some tasty licks today.

While there are many other great online tools out there, these are three that really standout in focusing on rudimental percussion. While taking in person lessons is the best way to grow your skill, we believe it is important to always have other supplemental resources at your disposal.

Happy Practicing!

Percussion Evaluation and Off-Site Repairs

Summer break is here and there’s no better time to get your instruments evaluated than now! Chops Percussion and Paige’s Music’s repair department are willing to send a trained specialist to your school to assess your percussion inventory.

Our percussion repair specialist, will work with you in deciding the best course of action to get your inventory back in its best shape! Paige’s Music offers on-site repair for large percussion instruments such as timpani, mallet instruments, concert bass drums, etc. This service is intended to alleviate the need to send in large instruments with your District Manager and be without them for several weeks. If an instrument is not repairable, we will recommend the best replacement options to best suit your ensemble’s needs.

No more waiting for your large instruments or going without because the instrument is waiting in the shop! Small percussion instruments can be paired with a large percussion instrument request for added value. If interested in an equipment evaluation or on-site repairs, please email chops@chopspercussion.com for more information.