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The Life - Matthew Dudek

Matthew Dudek's percussion setup for Cy Coleman’s The Life at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan.

Matthew Dudek's percussion setup for Cy Coleman’s The Life at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan.

“With ‘classics’ like 'The Oldest Profession' and the big dance number 'The Hookers Ball' this show was a lot of fun to play. It's almost continuous music so you rarely get a chance to catch your breath, which isn't always a bad thing either. I've found many theaters are quick to eliminate the percussion book for budget reasons and ask the drummer to ‘grab what they can’. However, this show definitely needs the percussion book to go hand in hand with the drums. Not only are there well written mallet parts, especially a Milt Jackson-esque vibraphone line, but the additional Vibraslap hits and shaker-feels truly set up the musical styling and New York environment.

This was the first I had heard of anyone doing this show and I had to do some digging around to find out more about it. Hopefully more people will get a chance to experience this show and enjoy this percussion book like I did.

While I work on catching a National Tour and expanding outside of Michigan, getting to play great shows and work with even better theaters is always an honor.

Like most percussion books, the difficulty was primarily in the choreography of instrument to instrument. It took a few days of running the show to find where things truly needed to be to work, but this was a great experience!

Because this is a black box theater with no pit, the band was in the scene shop next to the theater."

Percussion:

  • Yamaha Glockenspiel
  • LP Vibraslap
  • TreeWorks Double Row Wind Chimes
  • LP Granite Blocks
  • Miller Machine with Alan Abel 6" Triangle
  • LP Cowbell
  • Rhythm Tech Tambourine
  • LP Congas
  • Wooden Shells
  • Rainstick
  • Maracas
  • Shaker
  • Finger Cymbals
  • Ratchet
  • Bell Tree

Cymbals:

  • Zildjian 17" K Constantinople Suspended Cymbal
  • Zildjian 16" K Fast Crash
  • Zildjian 9" Zil-Bel

Electronics:

  • MalletKat Pro for Vibraphone and Xylophone
  • Apple iPad running ThumbJam for Timpani sounds

Vic Firth Sticks and Mallets

The Life - Regional - Matthew Dudek
November 2014

Matthew Dudek's percussion setup for Cy Coleman’s The Life at Oakland University in Rochester, Michigan.

Greg Landes’ setup for the Off Broadway production of The Landing at the Vineyard Theatre in New York City.
Mike Drake's set up for Side Show at the Casa Mañana Theater, in Fort Worth, Texas.
  • 3 min read
Greg Landes’ setup for the Pit Stop Players’ concert at Symphony Space in New York City.
"After a week or two of rehearsals there is usually a performance or two of the show for an invited audience. Sometimes these performances can be intense if there are important people in the room, or if certain sections of the show feel under prepared. This is why it’s so important to know the score and script very well."
  • 6 min read
"The unique part of Groundhog Day was that the drummer had to play on stage, in a groundhog costume, wearing a giant groundhog head. Since I could barely see out of the head, it was impossible to read a chart (and there wasn’t a music stand), so it had to be memorized."
  • 4 min read
"If you are passionate, driven, feel you have a calling, a burning desire to play, practice, perform, and record music that you can share with the world, then choosing to be a professional musician here will make you a fulfilled and happy person. You’ll meet the most amazing people on stage, in the rehearsal room and in the audience."
  • 6 min read
Steve Gadd's drum solo from the track "Signed, Sealed, Delivered I'm Yours". From the album Live Stuff (out of print) from the legendary 1970's New York based band Stuff.
Robbie Ameen's drum solo from the track "Spring Fling".

Gene Krupa's drum solo from "Gene's Blues" from the album Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich released November 1955.

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