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Playing
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Transcribing

Bruno Mars – SB48 Halftime Show

Probably the most visible drum solo in recent years was by a pop singer. And it was actually really good (even if the game wasn't). Dedicated to the heroes of Super Bowl LI.

Brian Blade – Jazz Crimes

Brian Blade's playing is definitely some of the coolest among modern players'. I've given up hoping to sound that good, but attempting to write it out gave a lot of insight.

Philly Joe Jones – Straight, No Chaser

The bop drummers, including Philly Joe Jones, are the ones you want to play like. 

Composing

Stone Airplane

I love how simultaneously concise, poignant, and hilarious Shel Silverstein's poems can be, even if I've aged out of his core demographic a bit.

An die ferne Geliebte

Inspired by Beethoven's incredible setting of the same poem. Songwriting is tricky when you don't do much singing (not least in German).

Three Short Dances

Dances for piano, cello, and clarinet. Each of the three conforms only to the loosest definition of its eponymous dance type.

Sonnet

For bass and vibraphone. An attempt to translate the strict rules of sonnet (rhyme, meter, etc.) to a harmonic, melodic, and rhythmic grammar.

Miniature Dance Suite

Four loosely connected ideas modeled on Schubert's short dances: short waltz-like melodies with minimal development.

Bagatelle

Bagatelles are qualified as "short and unpretentious", though this could probably do with some pretense.

Caprice for Cello
Modeled on Paganini's famous caprice. I'm not intimately familiar with the instrument, so it may also require a prodigy (accidentally).
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