Mentoring Program

You Got Reggaed

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A nice reggae inspired tune.
Grade Level: 8
Intended For: Live Instrument Performance
Software Used: Noteflight
Instrumentation: Flute, bass, piano, and drums.
Key: C
Meter Signature: 4/4
Tempo: 100bpm
Status: Work in Progress
Noteflight URL: Website Title
Located in: Opus 32 grades 6-8


#13 Lee Heuermann 2017-04-05 16:44
Dear Tovin,

Thanks for entering your piece, “You Got Reggaed” for Opus 32. Unfortunately, it was not chosen to be considered for performance. Because it was made clear that percussion was not available, we couldn’t consider your piece for inclusion because it still had percussion in the final version. I do appreciate that you rewrote your piano part to include some of the rhythm that was originally in your drumset part. I congratulate you on the work you put into it and encourage you to keep composing. I thought it was an especially fun piece. I look forward to seeing more work from you in the future and hope to work with you again. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Best wishes and keep up the good work!

#12 Lee Heuermann 2017-03-29 15:58
Hi Tovin,

Terrific job on “You Got Reggaed” I think it’s a really fun piece and you’ve really created a certain mood with it. Very fun! You’re almost done, but not quite!

The next step to make your piece more expressive and to really come alive is to add dynamics and articulations.

Dynamics (volume)
Please add dynamic markings (volume) such as forte (f), piano (p) or mezzo forte (mf), and crescendo or decrescendos throughout.

Articulations (legato, staccato, accent marks)
If you don’t write these in throughout the piece everything will be played detached, so if you want it to flow - use slurs for legato (flowing) or if you want it detached and short sounding use staccato. For accented attacks use accent marks. If you don’t put anything in (and sometimes you may want this) each note is played somewhat separated from the next.

Descriptive markings
In the beginning and at different points in your piece if the mood changes, you can use words to describe what you want, such as “laid back”, or whatever words you think best describe your piece and how you want it played. This really helps the performers and especially when there’s not a lot of rehearsal time this really helps the performers to understand what you want as the composer. Be specific!

I like the guiro too, but who are you imagining will play this part and do you have a guiro? Remember, there’s no percussion for this concert.

Good job with distributing the rhythm part into the piano!

Remember to get your changes in by tomorrow, Thursday, 3/30/17!

Let me know if you have any questions!

#11 Tovin Gordesky-Hooper 2017-03-28 10:31
I just redid it last minute. I'm sorry I should have kept in touch better. I just saved the final version for this project.
#10 Lee Heuermann 2017-03-23 14:37
Dear Tovin,

How’s everything going with your composing? I just wanted to check in with you and to remind you that you’re in the home stretch. You need to have your final draft of your composition ready by one week from today, Thursday, March 30th.

We will then select the pieces that will be performed on the Opus 32 concert. If your piece is selected, we will then work together on polishing all of the details for the final submission of your score to give to the performers.

Let me know if you have any questions and how I can help you, and please work hard to get things ready by next Thursday, 3/30.

Thanks and keep up the good work!

#9 Lee Heuermann 2017-03-20 21:30
Dear Tovin,

As our senior mentor Eric says, it will not be possible to have a drumset for the Opus 32 concert. We also do not have an electric bass so you would have to leave that out - we only have acoustic bass.

I have a few suggestions for you. The order of instruments should be from top to bottom:

flute, piano then bass.

As I said in my post of 2/12:

“For your piano part you should always use the grand staff as piano is for both right and left hand - treble clef for right hand (as you have) and bass clef for the left hand. Even if you only have the right hand playing you would write rests in the left hand part. Look at some piano music to see how the bracket joins the treble and bass clefs to the left of the staff.”

Also, as we won’t have a drumset perhaps you could take your rhythm from the drumset part and have the piano play that in chords using both right and left hands. Try to voice your chords using different inversions so that they aren’t all in root position block chords.

Let me know what you think of that idea.

We just have 10 more days until March 30th which is the deadline for your final draft to be considered for the Opus 32 concert performance, so try to work as quickly as possible.

Please let me know if you have any questions!

#8 Erik Nielsen 2017-03-20 16:32
Dear Tovin,
I saw Lee's message to you. I'm sorry, but we don't have drums available for this concert. If you like having them with your piece save a version with drums under another title that you can perhaps have performed elsewhere. However, for Opus 32 I'm afraid you'll have to make do without them. Please let me know if you have questions.

Best wishes,
Erik Nielsen
#7 Lee Heuermann 2017-03-20 14:57
Hi Tovin,

I hope you are well and Happy first day of Spring! I am asking our director if it's possible to add a drum set for your piece. It's not in the list of instruments to compose for this time around for Opus 32, which is strings, woodwinds and piano, but it's worth asking about. I'll get back to you as soon as I hear from them.

Keep up your composing!

#6 Tovin Gordesky-Hooper 2017-03-16 15:00
Sorry I havent been on the sight in a long time. And thanks for the advice. Also, do I have access to drums in the performance? Thanks
#5 Lee Heuermann 2017-03-06 21:48
Hi Tovin,

I hope you're doing well! I haven't heard back from you in awhile and want to check in and see how you're doing with "You Got Reggaed"?

Also, as we’re getting started working together, please tell me a little about yourself, how you like to spend your time, what are your favorite things in school and out, and how long have you been involved in music and what instrument/s do you play? This will help me get more of a sense of who you are and how that relates to the music you compose.

Please let me know if you have any questions as I'm here to help in any way I can.

Best Wishes,

#4 Lee Heuermann 2017-02-12 17:34
Dear Tovin,

I hope you’re doing well! Great beginning of your piece and fun that you wanted to compose in a reggae style. Is that one of your favorite styles to listen to? Nice job with your percussion part and fitting your bass line in relation to that. I like that you included some minor harmonies such as e and d minor. I also like that you varied your rhythm in your flute melody.

I have a few practical score things to start with regarding a traditional order of parts. The flute should be on the top, as it’s higher in register, then piano, then bass, then the percussion part should be on the bottom. This varies sometimes, but this would be a better and more clear layout of your score.

For your percussion (clap) are you imagining a real clap, plus a percussion instrument or just an instrument and which one/ones?

For your piano part you should always use the grand staff as piano is for both right and left hand - treble clef for right hand (as you have) and bass clef for the left hand. Even if you only have the right hand playing you would write rests in the left hand part. Look at some piano music to see how the bracket joins the treble and bass clefs to the left of the staff.

On the Music-COMP website you can go to the Resources tab at the top, and click on “More Resources for Student Composers”, for info on composing for the piano and using Noteflight for percussion writing.

Also go to this link:
for info on composing for the bass and its’ range, etc.

Your music made me think of a reggae artist I thought you might want to listen to if you haven’t already. He’s Augustus Pablo. Check out Dub, Reggae & Roots from The Melodica King at this link:

After you reorganize your score, what are you imagining will come next?

I can’t wait to see!


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