Music's Edge Rock Camp, Session II, Day 3 (Wednesday):
The kids love "band meetings." We have our band name: "Albino Mosquito," which hints at the Nirvana tune in our set.
Speaking of which, pianist Rui (pronounced "Ray," from Hong Kong), is taking the solo. He's classically trained, so I transcribed it for him. (As a guitarist, I haven't written music out in a dozen years, and I'm waiting for him to point out that I'm doing it wrong.) The song is difficult for all. Thesections go by so fast -- Verse, bam! Chorus, bam! Break, bam! Transitions seem impossible, but it's only Wednesday.
Eliot the singer is working hard to find the Cobain notes in that odd melody (Owen and Rui MUST accent them in the vamp. I'm teaching "Internal Communication" through this passage.) Also, Bon Scott's original vocal rhythms in AC/DC are tough. Caroline observes: "That sounds really bluesy." (Which gave me the idea for dueling pianos for Rui and Izzi.)
Niko brought in his kit, so he and Jesse can practice the double drummer thing. (Last session, we just threw them up on the big stage without having tried it first, and it flew great. Now they get the luxury and frustration of fretting, analyzing and scrutinizing their parts. Thank you T.j. Martin-Lokey, for reprising guest drum instructor role.)
Bon Jovi is starting to soar. The girls practiced their verses at home. So, those vocals are in the pocket, and the dynamic lifts from section to section are thrilling.
Our songs involve a lot of shouting and Top-of-Your-Lung melodies. I didn't plan this, but I'm realizing the value of it as a motivator.
This takes me back to a Kurt Catlin memory from many years ago when he had to take over for me mid-week. My kids were begging to do Twisted Sister, and I told them that it was too difficult. Well, when Kurt showed up, he said, "Hell yeah. Let's do 'We're Not Gonna Take It!" He hadn't taught a camp before, and he didn't know that you're supposed to discourage kids from doing what they want.
When I returned, I asked one of the older students how the big show went. The answer was: "The Twisted Sister song was a real show stopper."