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Author Topic: Santana percussion  (Read 2622 times)

randtor

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Santana percussion
« on: December 27, 2006, 11:54:14 PM »

Hi All,

I have an opportunity to play percussion in a Santana tribute band. They have a drummer and a timbale player, and are looking for a "percussionist". Since I have been practicing the Zendrum, it appears to allow for an entire percussionist's ensemble! I am going to try playing with them to see if we are a fit, then take it from there.

My question is, does anyone have a site I can go to and check what exactly the percussionist is doing in each song, IE: what particular instrument they are playing at any given time, and when they change, to what instrument are they going to... that sort of thing?

I have been listening intently to a large selection of Santana songs, but it is difficult to determine what the drummer is doing, what the timbale is doing, and where the percussionist fits in. I grant you, some songs are easier to decipher than others. I want to be prepared for what I assume they want me for, when I try playing with them.

Am I being to anal? Should I just go and try some free lance percussion grooves and see how it works? I am a drummer by nature, tho I have some limited experience with congas and bongos. The Zendrum is opening up a new world for me... but I would like to enter this brave new world on my feet if possible!

 As some of you might remember, I was ready to give up and sell my Zendrum, I had gotten quite frustrated. But since I have dug in my heels and really grown to understand its capabilities, I am really enjoying myself! I mostly play my Roland drums and a TD-10 with a Blues/Oldies/Classic cover band, so this will be stepping out of character. I am planning on using the Zendrum more as I grow more comfortable with it. Can anyone give me some ideas? Thanks all!

RandO
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Pyrate

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2006, 07:54:16 AM »

Avast there matey!

     AOL online has some great music videos.  I'm sure they have some by Santana.  You might find something there that might help you.  However, i think if you just go with the currents rather than worry about what the original peroussionist was doing, methinks you will be just fine....savvy!

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Zenfem#9

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2006, 11:03:12 AM »

Keep in mind that Santana has at least two percussionists, sometimes three.  Congas, timbales, and general percussion. The cool thing about the zen is that you can program those different sounds in.  Sorry, don't know of a video source.  I would study basic timbale and conga grooves.  Learn clave patterns so you can keep that going while your other hand is driving a groove.
One word of caution.  In my experience, set players that try to play percussion sound like set players trying to play percussion.  They really are two different beasts, so approach it as something completely different than the set.  Add the zen in there and it really changes it up.
That sounds like lots of fun!

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randtor

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2007, 09:06:18 PM »

Pyrate,
Thanks for the advice about going with the currents, I think that sounds like the best way to approach this. I have been listening to plenty of Sanatan songs, I have loaded about 30 or so onto my Ipod, and play to them almost nightly. Thanks for the reply. Also, see below.......

Zenfem#9,
Thank you too, for the reply. I wondered if what I was listening to was 2 or 3, or even more, percussion players. I assume when one of the guitar/horn/keys players aren't playing, they are banging on something! So, add in the timbales, and the drummer, and there is a lot of percussion in some of the songs. I think the Zendrum gives me lattitude to try and fit 3 or 4 percussion pieces in at once, as long as its clean and in a pattern, not helter skelter.
I have been practicing conga/timbale/bongo licks, and trying the one handed approach, so I can try and carry out a set pattern on shaker/clav/castanet types, or wood block/cowbell/sticks . Its been fun, and some of the tunes are pretty easy to play. And, I think it sounds ok. Some of the other songs are pretty crowded with percussion, so I think I have to weed it out, and try and keep it simple. I have a tendency to want to "fill" all the time, with everything, so I have to try and keep it simple and clean, and yet provide as much as I can.

I hope to be practicng/jamming with the band this week... I'll let you know how I make out.
Thanks,
Rand
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Pyrate

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #4 on: January 02, 2007, 08:13:15 AM »

Avast there!

     Something to consider that may help you.  If your module (be it hardware or software) can handle it, try setting up some rythmic patterns that you can activate by striking a single zendrum pad.  This will leave your hands free to do other things while that pattern is playing.  Just a thought.

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randtor

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2007, 08:53:26 PM »

Pyrate...

Well now, matey, that's a thought! I have a Roland TD-10 exp. I am using with the Zendrum. I can probably set up a pattern like you suggested, I'll have to  play a bit with that and see what kind of flotsam and jettsom comes up from the deep. Course, the pattern will have to play out in time with the music, and that could be a problem. Setting up a constant timed pattern always never matches the tempo of the band, unless they let ME lead the way, and they follow the tempo... could happen, I'll have to mull this one over and see if anything comes of it... Arrrrrgh!
Thanks!
RandO
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duojet

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2007, 08:58:32 PM »

check this site out for some great percussion (various world, not just latin). it may not have the santana stuff but there are a lot of great lessons including audio and video

http://www.petelockett.com/lessons/index.html
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randtor

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2007, 10:38:58 PM »

Thanks Duojet,

 thats a pretty nice site.  I just started exploring it, I will take a good tour over the next few days, but already I can see some prety interesting things here.

I appreciate your help!

RandO
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Michael Render

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #8 on: January 04, 2007, 08:30:26 AM »

Wow, that is a great site - thanks.
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duojet

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #9 on: January 04, 2007, 08:38:23 AM »

i have alot of the instrument samples from the site, but its very challenging trying to figure out how to map percussion articulations to the zendrum in a way that works. Its different for so many instruments. If anyone has any general guidelines that would be great.
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Pyrate

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #10 on: January 05, 2007, 05:43:56 AM »

Avast there mateys!

     The best person to wanswer this question would be our very own Tribal Wizard, John Emrich.  He uses two Zendrums at the same time and manages to programthem for different things, yet makes the whole thing sound terrific (just watch some of his videos).  He might be able to assist in this matter.  And now.............

      Heeeeeeeeeerrrrrrreeeesssssss Johnny!

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john emrich

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #11 on: January 05, 2007, 08:06:00 PM »

Hi.

I suggest the following approach to mapping your zendrum:

Keep the Zendrum map the same at all times.  Change the sounds in your module.  There us no need to chase the thing all over the place.  One thing that might help is to turn it off and "Air-Zendum" with the new sounds in mind.  Sing the sounds that you are "Air-Zennning" and notice where your fingers fall.  It will lead to a map that your brain finds natural.  For example, when you play a real conga, you draw sounds out of the drum from your fingers and the palm of your hand.  If you are used to certain hand positions making specific sounds, "Air-Zenning" will help you make a natural map. 

This approach will allow you be creative, without trying to remember where you put a specific sound.   ;D


BTW - Latin music is more about "how", as apposed to "what" is played.  I suggest the KISS method for you Santana gig. (Keep It Simple Stupid.... or what ever S word you like)
The music is all about feel and a vibe that often has an almost religious background.  It is very easy to get complicated and the vibe goes right out the window.  If you are one of three players, this becomes even more important.

Hope this helps,
John 


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randtor

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Re: Santana percussion
« Reply #12 on: January 07, 2007, 08:44:10 PM »

John,

good advice. When I first started playing with the Zendrum, I was thoroughly confused and ended up with completely different setups on several channels. It got so confusing, and I had such a limited understanding, that I gave up and put it down for months. Now, this Santana opportunity has given me new life and forced me to (a) learn how to use the Zendrum and the TD-10 as a unit, (b) learn how to program and play with it to see what works for me.

I haven't yet played with the band, that should happen this week or next. I agree, the KISS method is my first approach. I need to see what THEY need from me, and not overdo it. Try to fit between the cracks, and hopefully blend with the existing drummer and timbale player. Then, if it's a go and I find I am in the groove so to speak, try to work on the flow of the music and feeling it, not simply playing.

Thanks for the advice.
Rand
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