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GREETINGS one and all and welcome to this monthâs Drummersâ column. Instead of my usual drum scores and snare-drum technique studies which 1 have written for your edification in Crescendo since December issue 1962âI am going to have a straight talk to you concerning a few things that are beginning to cause me some concern.
Since I started writing this Drummers' column for Crescendo, I have had hundreds of letters from vou, all of them concerning your own personal drumming problems. 1 have always answered your letters promptly and given you the answers to things that were puzzling you musically, or giving you trouble
ON August Bank Holidayâwith my feet up and a glass of beer by my sideâI had the opportunity of listening to Kenny Salmon. On this occasion he was with his Seven, including Vic Flick on guitar. Kenny is obviously a very talented young man and plays his organ with considerable taste, changing tone coâours frequently. He is now'much sought after and sometimes does as many as 15 sessions a week. On Bttt Roundabout, he is booked with his trio tor many weeks to come.
Nice to see that Charles Smitton had a Music While You Work. I believe this was his first. Although Charles sounded a bit nervous and the intervals between pieces were too long, it came over quite wellâ especially the second half. One gets a little tired though, of too much one-finger stuff in the right hand. Whereas simplicity in playing is admirabâe, a little more of the chordy, beat sound would have gone down very well.
Charles is a first class musician and I hope the BBC will give him more opportunities for displaying his skill. But (and I have said this before) radio gives very little time to the organ at the moment, and little or no opportunity to new faces. It s not yet realised hat the electronic organ is here to stay, and that this (comparatively) newr sound requires the modern approach in playing technique. There are at least half-a-dozen young organists who are worthy of putting over their particuâar brand of music to a wider audience.
I am told that last year the total sales figure for the trade amounted to nearly two million pounds, of which between 60 and 70 per cent, represented sales to private homes. Therefore, any suggestion that the organ is not popular with listeners cannot be accepted as fact.
In the States, it is said that 57 per cent.
technicallyâor matters such as correct tuning and care of your drums.
Many of you from various parts of the country have come to London to call on me and have your drumming problems settled "for you in person. And here is where 1 have had something of a shock.
In the course of putting you right on certain things that were not clear to you, I discovered that quite a few of you had not taken the trouble to read my column each month in the way it was meant to be read. That is, absorbing intelligently all the knowledge I was giving you free.
1 found that quite a lot of you had not bothered to practise and master the technique studies I had written. About three of you, out of every
of homes own an organ. I foresee similar popularity in this country. It is obvious that there is a considerable future for good entertainment organistsâand it is equally obvious that the BBC will be expected to cater for the electronic-organ audience. It might be an idea if they got in on the ground floor.
(Continued on page 36)
by MAX ABRAMS
dozen who called on me, had bothered to get a manuscript book and write out all the Crescendo drum scores so that they would be more readable than when printed. Owing to space considerations, my drum scores had to be reduced in size.
When I tackled those who came to see me for advice as to whether they had spent a lot of time in practising my technique studies the usual answer was: âWell I looked at them, but I didnât really practise them.ââ
Now, if this goes on, I honestly see no point in continuing to give you valuable free tuition in Crescendo. Some magazine contributors are not really all that interested in whether their readers absorb what they write, but I am. I want you to benefit from what I write for you and } want you to become more competent performers on the drums. If I did not give tuppence for you or your problems, I wouldnât bother to devote the time that I do to writing helpful studies for you each month in Crescendo.
Having given you my opinion on your apathetic attitude towards drumming, I now leave it to you to decide whether you want a Drummersâ column of real help to youâ or whether you would prefer one full of chatty material of no real value to you as a drummer.
If you prefer the latter, then I will cheerfully retire from the scene and let someone else give you a chatty column from now on.
It is entirely up to you.
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