RS transparentthe official blog of the Percussive Arts Society

  • Year Two for the Rhythm! Scene Blog by Josh Gottry

    by Rhythm Scene Staff | Jan 04, 2021

    Josh GottryRhythm! Scene, the official blog of the Percussive Arts Society, just turned one-year old, and what an interesting year it was! Thanks to the efforts of many PAS staff members, most notably Marianella Moreno and Hillary Henry, we were able to frontload the blog with over 100 posts from the past six years of R!S in its digital magazine format. Since January 1 of last year, we have added well over 100 new posts, ranging from HotLicks to R!Solos, from product showcases to industry news, and from educational articles to interviews and profiles, all free and fully available to anyone with an internet connection and an interest in the percussive arts!

    One of the things I was most excited about as the year began was the flexibility for the R!S blog to keep our community up to date on upcoming events, concerts, workshops, and seminars. Instead, in what continues to be a trying year for our performing arts and educational community, the flexibility allowed us to post information about cancellations, rescheduling, moves to online formats, and a disappointingly high number of In Memoriums.

    Despite that, I believe the R!S blog allowed us to connect with each other and share what we could to continue moving forward, despite the difficulties and frustrations. Practice-at-home tips and stories about COVID adaptations were highlighted in our summer content. The last few months have included reports of several successful online workshops and the promotion of an upcoming one, along with a feature on a virtual recording project centered on significant works in our historical rudimental drumming canon. We profiled 42 university percussion professors from around the country and hope to do the same with as many as 50 freelance percussionists in 2021. With any luck, by the time summer rolls around, we’ll be able to resume our plans to keep you posted on workshops and events that allow us to gather together and learn about and celebrate percussion!

    So, subscribe, check-in regularly, tell others about this resource, and if you are so inclined, contribute with articles, interviews, or news of your own. In order for this resource to be most impactful, news and content should be generated from and by you, our percussion community, so if you have an idea for an article, email me anytime at PAS is your society, and the Rhythm! Scene blog is your publication. I look forward to curating this resource for the coming year on your behalf!

  • Letter from the Editor by Josh Gottry July 2020. Six Years and Six Months — R!S Reaches Another Milestone

    by Rhythm Scene Staff | Jul 01, 2020

    Josh GottryThe first issue of Rhythm! Scene hit the Percussive Arts Society website on February 1, 2014. In late-2019, after six years as a bimonthly digital magazine, PAS leadership recommended that the publication transition to a blog format, releasing new content three to four times each week instead of a bulk release every-other month. A handful of people worked diligently behind the scenes to bring some of the published R!S magazine content to the blog in anticipation of the formal debut on January 1, 2020. Today marks the six-month anniversary of that transition.

    My question to you is, have you yet discovered all that Rhythm! Scene provides? Every issue—36 in total—of the R!S digital publication is still available on the PAS website. Interviews with Hannah Ford Welton, Third Coast Percussion, Andy Akiho, Anica Nilles, Jojo Mayer, Escape Ten, Ivan Trevino, Cindy Blackman Santana, and much more are ready to read, by anyone who may be interested, PAS member or not, for FREE. Extensive past and new content is also available within designated categories of the blog, including seven “App Scene” articles provided by the PAS Technology Committee, 21 “PAS Profiles” of individuals who are in leadership within the society, 10 “What I Wish I Had Known” articles covering foundational elements of percussion performance, and over 30 “R!Solos” with sheet music, performance notes, and video performances provided by the PAS Composition Committee. In addition, you will regularly find new product and industry news, people and places articles, HotLicks, upcoming events, summer workshops (including the many virtual camps that were offered this year), and much more, with all of this searchable, categorized, and shareable, either directly to friends and colleagues or via social media.

    So, as I said in my welcome article six months ago, please subscribe, check-in regularly, tell others about this resource, and if you are so inclined, contribute with articles, interviews, or news of your own. I continue to look to you, our percussion community, for articles and ideas to improve this resource. If you have a suggestion or submission, e-mail me anytime at

    In the meantime, check out what Rhythm! Scene already has to offer, and be sure to tell someone else about it as we celebrate our first six months as the R!S Blog!

  • Letter from the Editor by Josh Gottry

    by Rhythm Scene Staff | May 04, 2020

    Josh GottryCancelled. This is a word that we’ve heard far too often about far too many things that are important to each of us. Graduations, concerts, summer camps, gigs, family gatherings, days of percussion, sporting events, and much more have each been removed from our calendars and replaced with a lot of waiting for when we might be able to get back to something more like normal. The first Monday of each month is typically reserved on this blog for upcoming events, but at this point, we unfortunately have nothing to share. Many in our profession are hurting financially. Some of us are enduring health issues, directly or indirectly related to the pandemic. All of us are suffering emotionally, at least to some extent. Despite all of this, there are still remarkable things happening within our percussion community!
    Many of us are learning about and subscribing to each other’s YouTube channels and appreciating the excellence displayed. Lots of us are generating and distributing new digital content to share with colleagues and students. Recitals are being presented from living rooms and front porches, streamed for anyone to watch. Composers are sharing music to allow us to learn new pieces with whatever downtime and instruments we may have available.  Students are figuring out how to improve their four-mallet technique on the floor and how to practice timpani on a tenor pad, exploring or creating music for found sound instruments, and quickly becoming pros with audio and video software they’ve been waiting for an excuse (and a little time) to learn on their phone or laptop. Our drive to better ourselves and share with others has not been cancelled; rather, it has been amplified!
    We are living through a once-in-a-lifetime event. The next weeks and months will still lack for some elements of normal. Through all of this, PAS remains committed to the same things that we see from many of you during this crisis: to further our art form by whatever means available for the benefit of our colleagues, our students, and our community.
    Be safe, support one another, and Drum On!

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