computers · marching band · Sibelius · teaching

Update after a looooong time away…

Wow! In the year-and-a-half since my last update to this blog, WordPress has updated the interface a great deal – it’s very pretty now to work in – and quite a bit has happened with me! For those still linking this blog, and for any new visitors, here’s what’s been going on.

My book, The Band Director’s Guide to Arranging for the Marching Band, has been out for a couple of years now. I don’t know what “selling well” is for a book of this kind, but it’s certainly generated some revenue…for which I am very grateful! I hope it has been helpful to those who purchased it.

Last week Marketing Vision Partners, the company that marketed, sold, and delivered the book, decided to get out of the e-book publishing business. Nuts! Now I need to find another way to get it out to customers.

For the moment, if you would like to purchase the book, please email me and we can work out payment (probably PayPal) and I can email you the book. Price is $ 30 US. Here’s the bonus…

When the Second Edition is published (hopefully in the winter of this year) I will send you a pdf copy of it FOR FREE. So you don’t have to feel you should wait until March of 2017 to purchase…you will be among the first to get the new version.

Why a new version? Well, I’ve thought about things to add and expand upon. There are also some emerging areas in marching band show development I need to talk about, like the use of electronics and processing of copyright permissions. I plan to update the example arrangements, and also add a completely new one. The Sibelius screenshots were all done using version 7, and the current version is 8. There are enough changes to make replacing the screenshots necessary. Also, there are ways to substantially improve the playback in Sibelius when you create demos, using third-party audio sample libraries. I’ve recently started working with EastWest /Quantum Leap virtual instruments using their ComposerCloud program.

Eventually, the new edition of the book will be available in paper form as well as electronic. I couldn’t do that under the old publishing agreement. I am looking into CreateSpace for print book fulfillment. If any of you have had dealings with that company, for good or ill, I would like to know about it. I won’t make a decision on how to handle the print version until the book is completed.

So why has this taken so long? Well, life. My knee replacement and subsequent recovery was followed by my wife’s knee replacement and recovery six months later. I judged marching bands eight weekends last year and again this fall. I’ve become more involved in the Central States Judges Association, including developing a FileMaker Pro database for them, and serving as webmaster and secretary. I’m finishing Level Two of the judge training of the Marching Roundtable Judges Academy. And being a Grampa occupies some time, and is the best thing ever!

I thought I would rewrite the book this past spring. I’m glad I didn’t – there are many things that are clearer to me now after judging another 5 shows and completing another writing season. I have three more big shows to judge in the next three weeks and I think there will be some additional clarity I will have there.

What I’ve not had is time to write any more jazz! Maybe in the winter, along with updating my professional web site, changing the payment system on that site, putting some of my marching band arrangements up for sale, continuing the upgrading of the FileMaker Pro database for CSJA, and so on and so on…

I’m going to upgrade the shopping cart for my web site at waggonermusic.com in the next month or so. I’ll mention it here when I do!

One other item of note: As of today, Steinberg’s new music scoring software, Dorico, has just been released. Philip Rothman’s Sibelius Blog has a detailed review of the program. It is the first scoring program that has been written from the ground up in a long time, and it looks like a game-changer.

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