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Topic: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

  1. #1

    Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Alrighty, here's the completed version of "One Stormy Night." This is modeled after the evening pop-up storms that plague the southeastern regions of the United States

    Though this does have battery percussion in it, the parts for it are light and easy compared to the parts for mallet percussion, so the mallets steal the spotlight on this one.

    If you're interested in looking at the (un-edited) score, why...here it is!


    And here is the 28-hand (14 person for those of you who were not so good at division )percussion ensemble.

    lo-fi URL: http://www.soundclick.com/util/getpl...d=6739792&q=lo
    hi-fi URL: http://www.soundclick.com/util/getpl...d=6739792&q=hi
    Michael Obermeyer, Jr.
    youtube channel
    soundclick page

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Vancouver, BC

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    I enjoyed this piece. I wasn't sure what to expect from a 28 mallet composition but this has a good flow with quite a fine theme and intriguing tonal colours. The battery percussion does add a realistic touch of storm sound effects without obscuring the melodious mallets.

    To me it could suggest more than just a stormy night - perhaps something supernatural like goblins or sprites dancing in the rain.

    Well done. Thanks for sharing.


  3. #3

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    This is really cool, Michael! You obviously have much experience with mallet percussion, and your writing here is not only "in the pocket" idiomatically, but also compositionally interesting and intriguing -- really nice harmonic content in there. I like the fact that you used the timp and cymbals with restraint in the roles of thunder and lightning (I think??) -- could've easily been cheesy, but you handled it with musicality and taste.

    I enjoyed listening very, very much. We don't seem to get the chance to enjoy many mallet percussion pieces in the forum, so this was a real treat.


  4. #4

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Thanks very much for your kind words!


    To be all technical here , this actually utilized more than 28 mallets. If I remember correctly, Marimba I uses 4, Marimba III uses 3 or 4 (depending on preference), and Vibraphone I and II both use 3 mallets. So, if you were to add those up, you'd have 33-34 mallets! Yikes! At $30-$40 for a pair of the general-use ones, that adds up!

    Supernatural goblins and sprites, eh? (Canadian jibe not intended) Very interesting...I love it when people tell me what it makes them think of, individual interpretation is the greatest! Thanks for your comment!


    I'm glad you found I used "restraint." I know percussion ensembles have a reputation of being a bit zany, or "in-your-face" obnoxious, but I try to keep them sounding as orchestral as possible. As for rolls of thunder, you hit it right on, but in all honesty, the use of the Bass Drum, Snare, Cymbals, and Timpani were primarily to fill in holes and smooth transitions. Thanks!


    As I forgot to mention it in my first post, the Vibraphones are the only non-Finale-GPO instruments used in this arrangement.
    Michael Obermeyer, Jr.
    youtube channel
    soundclick page

  5. #5

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Hi Michael,

    well we have these pop-up type storms in Colorado too, but yours must be much gentler LOL! Here it will be a nice summer day and then suddenly, usually around mid-afternoon, a big storm will roll in, thunder to shake the house, drop buckets of rain, and hurl lightning strikes at anything handy.

    So I guess I expected more "in-your-face" loud percussion because of that!

    But this is very nice, with a flow and intriguing rising and falling of rhythm ala "Mother Nature", and it opened my mind to how much one can do with percussion -- something I am not very good at (have just begun sticking a toe in those waters. Thanks also for posting the score -- I'll look for sure; it will help me see how to score for percussion.

    Listen at: www.soundclick.com/kepeaceusa
    Scores at: http://stores.lulu.com/ke_peace

  6. #6

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Hi Michael,

    Nice structure and series of harmonic ideas. Very good transitions, this piece was a clever sequence of ideas and was uplifting to me.

    Thanks for posting,

  7. #7

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Hi Michael,

    Very well put together and concieved. I enjoyed the listen. I would have liked a bit more extension on the ending, but that's personal preference.

    I like the interplay of the voices. You have a nice 'knack' of keeping the piece very clean and easy to hear. Thanks for sharing.
    We dream to write and we write to dream.

    Challenge #10 Winner

  8. #8

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night


    The reverb on this is perfect. Everything stays nice and clear and yet has nice tails on them. What reverb is this?

    It may help to just add a measure on the end to allow that final tail to reverberate.

    Nice work

    "Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." Albert Einstein


  9. #9

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Thanks again everyone for your comments!

    KE Peace

    Yes, our pop-up storms don't get as intense as I hear they do in Colorado, and they never get as strong as some of the severe storms I went through every summer in my native Indiana. They can get pretty mediumish to medium-severish at times though, and they generally last no longer than a minute or two. But they can happen two or three times in a late afternoon or early evening.

    As for the song, itself I'm glad to hear that you're considering using my percussion writing as something to look to for information, I'm flattered . Thanks for your comment!


    Thank you very much, I try to keep my transitions smooth, and probably spend the most time working them out. It's very obvious when I don't work on a transition. I went skiing the other day. Thanks for your comment!


    As rolifer mentioned, adding a measure to allow the reverb to die is something that could be done, and I should have done. I'm not sure if you are refering to this when you want the end extended, or if you mean you wanted more music, but either way I probably could have extended it . And thanks a lot for saying I keep this clean. When I first started using Finale '08 and GPO, all my music sounded as if it were being played under water!


    Yes, I agree 100% that I should've added a measure or two to allow the reverb to die away. As for my reverb settings, give me a minute to look them up...or just skip ahead!!

    I'm not exactly sure what settings you want, but I'll give you the Garritan Ambience settings I used. Everything is set to default except for my wet/dry preference.

    Wet: 3.3dB
    Dry: 4.9dB

    Again, thanks for your comment!
    Michael Obermeyer, Jr.
    youtube channel
    soundclick page

  10. #10
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    South of the Ohio River

    Re: Mallet Percussion Feature: One Stormy Night

    Excellent work, Michael. Can I correctly assume from this piece that you have some drumline experience? If so, what corps were you with? Just curious. And one more question if I may. Was the score done in Finale or Sibelius?

    I really liked this piece and will be looking forward to some more from you.
    Dayton, Kentucky
    Personally, I'm waiting for caller IQ.

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