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INTRODUCTION

RHYTHM SECTION WRITING: BASIC TO SPECIFIC

WHEN WRITING FOR THE RHYTHM SECTION THE ARRANGER MUST ASSESS

THE PERFORMING SITUATION, STYLE, AND PLAYERS TO DECIDE TO WRITE


IN A BASIC OR SPECIFIC WAY.

FOR EXAMPLE; IF A SMALL GROUP IS PERFORMING "STRAIGHT-AHEAD"

JAZZ AND YOU KNOW THE DRUMMER CAN PLAY, THEN A BASIC APPROACH
WOULD APPLY ALLOWING THE DRUMMER TO USE THEIR OWN ABILITIES TO

CREATE THE FEEL.

THE CONTEMPORARY ARRANGER SHOULD HAVE AN UNDERSTANDING OF A

BROAD RANGE OF STYLES AND UNDERSTAND EACH INSTRUMENT AND ITS


LIMITATIONS. KNOWING HOW TO WRITE FROM A BASIC TO SPECIFIC WAY
IN EACH STYLE AND FOR EACH RHTYHM INSTRUMENT WILL GIVE THE

ARRANGER THE ABILITY TO ASSESS THE PROJECT IN TERMS OF ITS GOALS

THUS TRANSLATING THAT INTO THE BEST APPROACH FOR WRITING. IF

YOU KNOW YOUR PLAYERS THEN YOU'LL KNOW HOW TO WRITE FOR THEM.
IF YOU DON'T KNOW YOUR PLAYERS BUT KNOW THEY CAN READ SPECIFIC

WRITING WOULD BE BETTER. IF YOU DON'T KNOW YOUR PLAYERS AND

DON'T KNOW IF THEY CAN READ THEN YOU'D BETTER FIND OUT!

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Writing for the rhythm section

Basic Time for Rhythm Section Chord Comping

q = 120 ROCK

4
D-7
& 4
(Result is that the chord instrument plays (comps) rhythms in the style.)

Basic Time for Bass

q
#
= 90 FUNK

? 4 C7 9
4
(Result is that the bass player plays a groove that fits the style.)

Basic time for Drums and Percussion

q = 120 REGGAE

44
(STICKS)

(Result is that the drummer and percussionist plays a groove in that style.)

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Adding stop time and comping rhythms for groove and accents.

4
& 4 | | |

#1 Drums basic time and stop time rhythms


q
44 - > | . >
= 120 SWING


(STICKS)

J
(Result is that the drummer plays time until bar 3 then only plays the written rhythms)

#2 Drums kicks over time


j j
44
(Result is that the drummer plays time in the given style and also plays the accents that
on the drum or their choice.)

#3 Funk Style for Bass with important anticipations.


q
#9
C7 G7
G7 C7 A b7
= 90 FUNK

? 4 . F7
. .

D-7
4
(5 string)
(Result is that the bass player grooves and catches all written rhythms.)

#4 Afro-Cuban 6/8 chord comping rhythm

q. =
F7 G b7 E b7 sus E b7
120 AFRO CUBAN

6
& 8 . . . . .
J J J
(Result is that chord players play written rhythms in the Afro-Cuban style.)
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Specific Rhythm Section Writing.
A) DRUMS
CYMBALS HI HAT % +
OPEN & CLOSED HI HAT TOMS SNARE

KICK



PEDAL HI HAT

The Pulse should be visible from the top and the bottom of the staff.

q = 120 SWING
3
qq =q e FUNK
44
44
. J

B) BASS

w
CONCERT RANGE TRANSPOSED RANGE

? w
w
w

OPEN STRINGS (TRANSPOSED)


4 - STRING BASS 5 - STRING 6 - STRING

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DRUM NOTATION - BASIC TO SPECIFIC
I. BASIC TIME

q
44
= 120 SWING


(STICKS)
PLAY TIME IN THE INDICATED STYLE

II. FEEL NOTATION


Provides more rhythmic information in the ride cymbal pattern in
relationship to the style. This is usualy followed by "simile"

q = 120 SWING
3
qq =q e


simile
A)
(STICKS)

q
j j j j
= 120 BOSSA



simile
B)
(STICKS)

q = 90 SAMBA



simile
C)

j j
. . 44

simile
D)

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3 PART DRUM GROOVES the arranger has control
FUNK % + %
44
. J
(STICKS)

q = 120 SWING
3
qq =q e

44
( ) ( ) ( ) ( )

(X STICK)

q = 100 ROCK

44
J J J
(STICKS)

ALL ARRANGERS SHOULD HAVE A VOCABULARY OF RHYTHM SECTION


GROOVE WRITING THAT INCLUDES SPECIFIC NOTATION FOR DRUMS, BASS,
AND CHORD RHYTHMS FOR VARIOUS STYLES INCLUDING ODD METER
APLICATIONS OF THESE STYLES.

1.) ROCK
2.) ROCK BALLAD
3.) SWING
4.) 12/8 ROCK, BLUES AND BALLADS
5.) BOSSA
6.) SAMBA
7.) LATIN
8.) FUNK
9.) HIP HOP

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