About PulseWave Percussion

Services:

  • Community drum circles
  • DrumDance parties and performances
  • Ice breaker Fun maker Rhythm shaker
  • Master Facilitator
  • Interactive Drum Clinics
  • Private and semiprivate Lessons

Classes

  • Conga Drumming
  • Djembe/Dundun
  • Brazilian Percussion
  • Cuban Percussion
  • EmBody Rhythm
 

  • Hand Percussion:
    Sticks; Bells; Shakers; Drums
  • World Music Survey
  • Time Counts
  • Rhythm Fitness (learning rhythm while walking)

Private & Group Lessons

Understanding music

Individual instruction and coaching on for drumset and hand drums including conga, bongo, dumbec, djembe, and framedrums; stick drums including dun dun and timbales, and any other instrument in my collection – (See Instrument Glossary)

Workshops

Our workshops are all based in rhythmic education and are tailored to suit the needs of particular audiences and locations. We work with corporate clientele as well as with small specialized groups with specific needs. We sponsor percussion clinics all over the country, and provide percussive entertainment to festivals, corporate events, parties, etc.

Rhythm Education Materials

We produce all sorts of materials (instructional videos, CDs, books, etc.) to help facilitate musical Rhythm Education. Our products are designed to address different levels of musical ability and experience, and cover a range of topics varying from Rhythmic Principles to in–depth exploration of culturally specific rhythms. For more information please see our catalog.


Percussion Clinics & Drum Circles

After many years of participating as both a student and presenter at drum clinics, drum circles, workshops and classes, I have had many opportunities to develop my ideas about what works best for students, presenter/facilitators and sponsors. I know that people who come to drum events want to play as well as be informed and inspired. By combining my knowledge of ensemble drum music and group dynamics with clear communication skills, I have created theinteractive drum clinic[Description]

In my clinics, I combine lecture, demonstration, and performance with audience participation. I educate the audience in the proper etiquette of when and when not to play and I watch the energy to see when it is time to change modes. This keeps everyone happy and engaged, and people leave wanting to by more instruments for their collections.

Interactive Drum Clinic Description:

I can demonstrate and answer questions about any of the instruments that LP makes as well as some that they don’t yet produce. I have fluency on more than 30 percussion instruments including : conga, bongo, timbales, guiro, clave, campana, shekere, maracas, quijada, bombo, surdo, tamborim, ganza, agogo, cuica, pandiero, caixa, afuche, repinique, apito, reco reco, caxixi, berimbau, gankogui, axatse, kidi, kaganu, ngoma, djun djun, djembe, kalimba, dunno, dumbec, bendir, tar, box drum, triangle, chimes, gongs, bell tree, shakers, woodblocks, seedpods, whistles, flexitone, waterphone, rainstick, bells, cymbals.

I am also knowledgeable in the history and traditional use of these instruments and am happy to share my understanding of their background.

A typical presentation I make would start with a conga solo on as many drums as are available, move to shekere and clave, then stop and briefly discuss the clave instrument and rhythm. I would then involve people by clapping and speaking the rhythm. Next I might demonstrate the guiro ( scratcher) and show how the rhythm can be learned with the bare hands and voice. At this point I could split the group into two and have one group clap clave and try and speak the guiro part and have the others play the guiro part and speak the clave rhythm. From here I can go any direction: reverse the two groups; teach a vocal/hand clap version of the cowbell part; invite one or two people to join me; play conga over the group; teach a break or chant; get people up and moving; stop and tell more history, demonstrate the rhythm at fast tempo, or move to another set of instruments.

It is probable that when people arrive, they will start drumming, if they are encouraged to bring their drums. This is fine. I will educate them as to the etiquette and let them know when and when not to play.

I favor the interactive approach and I alternate between demonstrating, talking, answering questions and getting the people involved. I continue to move through the instruments and time available and end with at least 20 minutes of group drumming that I conduct in the manner of a drum circle: no attempt is made to play traditional rhythms. People leave being educated, informed,and stimulated.

If you have any questions or comments please contact me. Thank You.


PulseWave… What’s in a name?

Pulse, Wave and PulseWave are words I use as a convenient way to describe a variety of seemingly polarized experiences. First and foremost is the unity/duality of mind and body, and their related approaches to learning rhythm.

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PulseWave also sums up several other concepts which inform my teaching style: additive/divisive rhythmic principles, sequential/simultaneous modes of consciousness, the continuum of pulsation and pitch, as well as the particle/wave duality found in quantum physics.
PulseWave means unity in duality. Each extreme contains the other. Small fast moving pulses become waves, and waves can be broken down into pulses of various density. The PulseWave percussion method seeks to describe, teach and impart music using both micro and macro perspectives.

PulseWave… What is it?

First let me describe my terms. In the sense that I choose to use “pulse” I am referring to a singular event, a percussive stroke that creates a sound. This is in contrast to another way to use the word in which “pulse” means a sequence of evenly timed strokes. I use “wave” to mean an oscillation, a surge or swell, a movement to and from. A “pulse,” then, can be likened to a point or particle and a “wave” to a cyclic movement over time.

From a rigid view then, Pulse and Wave are opposites. However, when we explore the flexible world of quantum reality we find that both matter and light exhibit qualities of both particle (point or pulse) and wave (vibration). This is one of the paradoxes of modern physics, that those things we think of a stable are, on a micro level, vibrations or waves, and that those things we perceive as waves (sound, light) have qualities of particles.

I use the pulse/wave terminology as a jumping off place to describe my approach to both teaching musical concepts and understanding musical experiences.

I use “pulse” to refer to the micro approach of analytically learning the sequence of strokes and hand positions of a pattern. Counting, notation, terminology, concepts and parts are in the realm of pulse, the intellectual, sequential mind. Learning in this manner may accelerate the student’s musical development.

I use “wave” to refer to the overall, macro, experience of the music. Learning by way of imitation, movement and singing drumlike sounds, is in the realm of wave, the intuitive, the body. Learning to play with “feel” and fluidity are indicators that the student has immersed herself in the “wave.” Typically this requires many hours of repetition.

Pulse and Wave can also be used to describe two complimentary approaches to describing rhythm. The nonwestern, additive concept views rhythm from the standpoint of how the small, fast-moving strokes are grouped into patterns. I call this the pulse approach.

Many of us are more familiar with the European system which is based on a divisive concept. It starts from large intervals marked by slow moving pulses (half or quarter notes) that are divided and subdivided into patterns. I call this the wave approach.

I teach and describe using both systems. I find that beginners respond to the “pulse” view and that as they progress the “wave” view becomes easier. The reverse is not always true, however. People schooled in the European system often have a hard time grasping the feel of nonwestern rhythms. The PulseWave percussion method can address this.

The PulseWave percussion method seeks to describe, teach and impart music using both micro and macro perspectives.