Folsom’s Select band that meets every Tuesday and Thursday BEFORE school (7:25)! We play harder music than in regular band and students are expected to be practicing more outside of school.
What do I need to do for the audition?
Play your concert Bb Scale AND another scale of your choosing
Play from the lowest note you know to the highest note you know
Choose a solo song to play-something you can play beautifully
Rhythm Sight reading-KK will give you this at the audition but you can practice by working through rhythms in your book or on the Rhythm Studies paper
Who Should Audition?
Any musician who can commit to practicing on their own whether it be during open music room, over the weekend, or at night. If you know that you will not touch your instrument outside of band rehearsal then Raz MaTazz is not for you. If you are willing to work hard I am willing to work with you in this ensemble.
Here is a video we put together of the 5th through 8th grade band playing “Highlights from Star Wars” by John Williams and arranged by Paul Cook. This piece was extremely challenging and I wanted our hard work to be commemorated with a video. Thank you to all of our videographers and our amazing Folsom Musicians!
Welcome back! I hope you all had exciting summers! I had a blast camping with you all last week and am ready to get into the Folsom Music Groove. Here’s what you need to know for the 2016-17 Folsom Music Program:
*Our Middle School Chorus is a 5-8th grade group who loves to sing together. We sing a variety of music from rounds, to our own arrangement of pop songs, to folk music from other countries. We also play a lot of games that bring us together as a chorus community. We will perform in at least two concerts, as well as popping up here and there with a song to share. Students will participate in the Island County Music Festival and have the option to participate in the District Music Festival. We rehearse Wednesdays from 3-3:50 (there will be a late bus beginning in a few weeks. Soccer Coaches are aware of our rehearsals and we are working together to make it work for all students,) and Friday during the school day.
*Our Middle School Band is 5th-8th graders who love to play music together. We will play marches, movie themes, slow songs, fast songs, songs with stories, songs from other countries, AND we will learn music just by ear, AND we will MAKE STUFF UP. Students will participate in the Island County Music Festival and have the option to participate in the District Music Festival. The 5th and 6th graders rehearse on Mondays, the 5th-8th graders rehearse Thursdays, and the 7th and 8th graders rehearse Fridays.
*Our Select Band called The Raz MaTazz is an auditioned band open to 6th-8th graders. If you were in the Raz MaTazz last year you do not need to re-audition. We do have a few spots open for new members. This group is for students who are looking for more challenging music AND are able to arrive at school by 7:25 on Tuesday Mornings. During the Spring we begin playing more Jazz and hope to perform at the Burlington Jazz Fest in June.
PRACTICING: Did your instrument grow some mold this summer because it remained in its case in a dark closet for multiple months? Okay. No worries. It’s a new year. The music room will be open Every Morning at 7:25 except Tuesday for students to come in and practice. It is expected that every student bring their instrument home over the weekend to practice. We are a middle school band, that means that we DO need family encouragement to practice. Thank you in advance for showing your child that you value music and the work they are doing.
Never played an instrument? Never sang in chorus? This is your year. It’s not too late to begin either of these things. Jump right into chorus, and let’s get you started on an instrument.
PLEASE contact Ms. Kauffeld if you’re interested in beginning an instrument! email@example.com (802) 380-9291 Thank you SO much for bringing music to our Folsom community! Spread the word! Take a risk! Try something NEW!
On March 22nd and 23rd thirty-two of our middle school musicians traveled to Alburgh to take part in the Island County Music Festival. Andy Gagnon from Stowe Middle School conducted the band, and Melissa Towle from Colchester High School conducted the chorus. Folsom set an outstanding example musically and as students in another school. The days were long, and our students were tired, but their handwork paid off because the concert sounded fantastic. Ms. Kauffeld is so proud and thankful for all of their help during the two days, we look forward to hosting the festival at Folsom next year! THE BAND
PLEASE listen to the three pieces for the festival. This music is HARD. Learning these tunes in a short amount of time will be SOOOO much easier if you listen. Listen with your music in front of you and follow your part.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS: the Spring Concert for 3rd-8th grade students will be Thursday May 28th at 6pm. There will be an Art Show that opens at 5:30. Hooray!
Folk Dancing in 3/4 grade:
The first video is from our Second Trimester Celebration of Learning. These students volunteered to play something they’ve been working on for their peers!
The second video is a collection of videos from the past few months. It includes instrumentalists, 1st and 2nd grade solos, finger puppets, and whale calls, Kindergarten presentations of instruments from home, and more!
This is the first in a series of blog posts aimed specifically at Folsom’s instrumentalists. Each will highlight some of the great instrumentalists that they should know about. Listening to great musicians will give our students examples of beautiful tone to strive for on their instruments, as well as examples of their instrument playing in many different genres, with different styles, and unique sounds.
While these posts are aimed at our instrumentalists they can be used to inspire other students into perhaps, starting an instrument, or for great music to listen to and enjoy!
Great Saxophone Players
1. Charlie Parker (1920-1955) Charlie Parker, also known as “Bird,” was born in Kansas City. He came from a non-musical family but luckily found himself at a school that promoted the study of music, so he took up the baritone saxophone. His mother eventually scraped together enough money to buy him an alto saxophone. As an unsupervised teenager Charlie began to frequent the Kansas City jazz clubs. He learned mostly by listening to others play. Because he didn’t know much about music theory, when he improvised (made up what he was playing over the chords played by piano/bass/guitar) he often played notes that didn’t quite “fit” with what the traditional sounds were in Jazz in the 1930s. Because of this his sound was unique. He moved to New York City and found like-minded musicians. Together the beginnings of a new jazz style called “Bebop” were formed. He met Dizzy Gillespie-a great trumpeter in 1949 and they became fast friends. Bird was addicted to drugs and alcohol throughout his career, and at the young age of 35 died because of it. “Birdland” is a jazz club in NYC named in his honor. This first recording is of Bird playing “Ornithology” The next is “Summertime,” which many of our middle school musicians sang last year. You’ll hear Bird on sax accompanied by string instruments.
2. John Coltrane (1926-1967)
John Coltrane (often just “Trane”) pushed the musical boundaries of jazz contributing to bebop and “free jazz.” He played alto saxophone in high school and in church bands. He made the switch to tenor saxophone and taking inspiration from the greats like Charlie Parker, he joined Dizzy Gillespie’s band. Trane, like many other musicians at the time, became addicted to drugs. His dependency resulted in getting him fired from his band. He overcame his addictions and returned to the jazz world. Trane developed a technique for playing long strings of notes at lightning speeds, sometimes playing up to 1,000 notes a minute. Trane moved jazz to a freer place with uncommon harmonies and rhythms. This first recording is of John Coltrane playing “Giant Steps,” where you will hear his long streams of fast moving notes. The next is a video of Trane playing “My Favorite Things,” which many of our musicians know from “The Sound of Music.” Trane puts a new spin on this classic tune.
Saxophones don’t ONLY have to play jazz… 3. Theodore Kerkezos While it is uncommon to find a saxophone in an orchestra (but typical to find them in a Concert Band or Wind Ensemble setting,) there are MANY pieces written for solo saxophone and orchestra. Theodore Kerkezos is a professor and saxophone soloist in Russia. He has received some of the highest musical awards in Russia for his playing and teaching.
In this video you will here Kerkezos accompanied by the Moscow State Conservatory Orchestra in Russia playing Milhaud Fedoseyev’s “Scaramouche”
The info on John Coltrane and Charlie Parker comes from a very cool book that Ms. Kauffeld has in her classroom for YOU to borrow called “The Definitive Illustrated Encyclopedia Jazz & Blues” by Julia Rolf.
The info on Kerkezos comes from Ms. Kauffeld’s good friend who plays classical saxophone!
The music room has come ALIVE this week! Many Middle Schoolers are preparing for the District Music Festival this Friday, 4th grade instrumentalists have all been busy at working learning tunes like “Frere Jacques,” “Mexican Mountain Song,” and “Sawmill Creek,” Kindergarteners have been doing 3 different “Mixer Dances,” the 1st and 2nd graders have been learning about Sound in Science, so in music we’ve been talking about PITCH, VIBRATION, and VOLUME, and using the Hand Chimes to discuss all three vocabulary words, in 3rd and 4th grade we’ve been composing with quarter notes and eighth notes and doing our favorite Russian Folk Dance, “Sasha!” AND SO MUCH MORE.
This week has been outstanding for before-school practicing! We’ve seen the return of many faces, (though looking a little sleepy at times,) but I am thrilled to have you back, and so proud of the extra effort you are putting in.
The Middle School Musical, “School House Rock!” is well under way with our amazing director, Gina Fearn. A terrific group of middle schoolers (and a few awesome 4th graders!) have been learning songs, blocking, and choreography for the show.
As we finish out the week I hope to collect more responses to the prompt,
“MUSIC MAKES ME____!” If YOU would like to fill out a sheet at home please let me know and I’ll make sure one makes it home to you!
Here’s a video of Preston rocking the bells, and another of many snippets from the past two weeks- Random Acts of Music, glimpses of K and 1/2 music classes, and band lessons.
The whole month of March we celebrate Music In Our Schools Month! At Folsom we’ve bookended the month nicely by kicking it off with the Island County Music Festival, and next Friday 14 Middle Schoolers will travel to Missisquoi Valley Union High School to participate in the District Music Festival either singing in chorus or playing in band. The rest of have been busy with RANDOM ACTS OF MUSIC during the school day. We’ve had performances over the P.A. system, a special “Human Piano” performed by one of the 5/6 classes during the Kindergarten-4th grade lunch, and we’ve got more in the works for our last week. Here’s a video showing a few random acts, and a few fun things we’ve done in music class. Some middle school performers are featured, as well as Mrs. Degree’s 1/2 class and the 3/4 team. Enjoy!
These students have been coming to school early almost every day to practice their instruments, clearly it’s paying off! Sawmill Creek is on page 20 of the Standard of Excellence Book 1 (the red book.) It has many combinations of quarter notes and eighth notes, accidentals, and slurs! These students have been working hard and they did a great job with this recording. (All before 8am, I might add!) Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the special guest in the video who offers moral support and occasional dancing… 😀