I grew up to my father’s musical instruments since he used to perform professionally with a band before he jumped into advertising. He had a guitar, harmonica, a set of bongo drums, drumsticks, cymbals, to mention a few. When I started school, I learned that these instruments have their respective families.
My music teacher discussed the three general categories of musical instruments namely wind, strings and percussions. Nowadays, it seems instruments that fall under the string family have become more famous than those in the two others.
Why? Because a lot of band members can identify the string instrument that they are using. For instance, you’re interviewing a band and you ask the names of its members. They would automatically say, this is blah blah on guitar, blah blah on bass, blah blah on violin, blah blah on cello, and so on. Isn’t it a blessing to reporters and music writers to bump into a band whose members have a clear grasp of their instruments?
I haven’t had the opportunity to interview a mainstream band that prominently applies a wind instrument into its music but I’m looking forward to interviewing one in the near future because I’m a big fan of wind instruments. I like saxophone in particular, it gives that jazzy mood. The flute and clarinet, on the other hand, bring back memories of my childhood. As a child, I used to listen to a cassette of Aesop’s Fables and I remember vividly that the background music came from a clarinet.
Now, on percussion… I noticed that bands nowadays overuse this word or it could be an excuse to cover up their ignorance of the function and names of instruments in this category. This was evident during an interview with a band who recently came out with an album. Before digging into their album, I asked the leader to introduce everybody and he says…this is ___ on lead guitar, ___on bass, ___ on drums, ___ on percs…
Percs? Perks? What percs? He was pertaining to a guy who had a conga in front of him. Why can’t the band leader just say the name of the instrument? What made matters worse is the sad fact that the band leader claims to be an artist. He says he is a serious artist in his craft, which is music, but he didn’t highlight the conga’s sound. I didn’t see the artist.
Perhaps, majority of bands know the importance of snare drums and cymbals already. As for those who have plans of experimenting with other percussion instruments, they have to first and foremost know the name of their instrument.
Music writers are not geniuses that’s why they conduct interviews to gather information. Heaven sent bands who can educate as well as entertain.