How long have you worked for PreSonus?
Five years. I started off in Product Management and then moved into Marketing Dept and then Sales and then Education…. Next thing you know, they’ll be asking me to mop the floors.
What was the first 8 track, cassette, CD, digital download you purchased?
What’s your side hustle?
I play drums in a band called Minos the Saint. Maybe you have heard of us… I also am the orchestra director at Istrouma Baptist Church, where I do some drumming, conducting, and arranging (using Notion). I also do a lot of work with soloists and groups in the area, whether it be side-man drumming, engineering, mixing, or producing.
What other products do you have?
All of them…. haha. I use ADL700, ADL600, Studio One, RML32, Studio One remote, Central Station Plus, Temblor 10, Eris 5, Eris 8, Sceptre 8, FaderPort, Air 12.
Why did you choose Notion as your favorite?
As an educator, Notion is the easiest and most fun product to teach others. You can do so much with it and it helps your workflow—more on that later. I like sharing that with others.
Tell us about a successful event you worked.
I attend education conferences year-round and work one-on-one with teachers to find the best solution for their instructional, rehearsal and performance spaces.
What are you currently working on–What’s next for you?
In the summer, music educators and students are involved in many music camps, marching band activities, and Drum & Bugle Corps tours. PreSonus provides the on-the-field reinforcement for The Blue Devils, The Phantom Regiment, Spirit of Atlanta, and many other successful competitive programs. Marching groups these days have significantly more audio technology requirements, whether it be scenes, routing, or remote control. I’m working with them to ensure groups have an easy-to-use, powerful, and flexible solution that fits their needs.
Got some tips?
The power of Notion is in the simplicity of the workflow and the flexibility to use it across multiple devices. The graphic display appears very sleek, but it’s a very powerful notation program, with some surprisingly quick engraving tools. My first tip is to learn the keyboard shortcuts on a computer, which are super intuitive (q=quarter note, d=dot, <=crescendo, #=sharp). On a computer/laptop or iPad, I suggest the handwriting feature, which enables you to write directly on the score with a mouse, finger, stylus or the Apple Pencil.
Anything else you want to share?
Notion is tightly integrated with Studio One. Sometimes, the classical musician in me wants to compose in Notion, then send the score to Studio One (I simply click “Send to Studio One”), where I can then use Studio One to produce tracks around my score. Other times, I’d prefer to write a song on guitar and vocals, and then “Send to Notion” so I can write scoring around my song.
Look, there’s pros, and then there’s real pros. Like, there’s Esteban, and then there’s Brian May. The Blue Devils are objectively the best in the world at what they do, and what they do is drum corps. In August of 2014, The Blue Devils set—nay, earned—the highest score ever in the history of competitive drum corps, an institution with a rich history dating back to whenever cavemen started banging rocks together.
It has since evolved considerably. The Blue Devils smoked the competition in 2014’s World Championship Finals with a 99.650. Take that as an indication of just how competitive DCI Championships really are. Can you think of another form of competition where the precision is so high that it requires a scoring system with three decimal places?
The ‘Devils are founded on precision, and we’re flattered that they’ve chosen the StudioLive AI digital mixers as well as the Studiolive AI PA Loudspeakers to reinforce their azure thunder with high volume and articulate clarity their chops deserves.
The Blue Devils perform at the PreSonus booth on 1:00 p.m. on Friday. Don’t miss this one. It’s not often you get to see the best drum corp in the world from five feet away—they’re usually packin’ stadiums.
The Blue Devils Drum and Bugle Corps won their 16th World Championship on Saturday with a record-breaking score of 99.65—the highest in the history of the competition!
The PreSonus family is extremely proud of the organization, and we have the utmost respect for the members and staff who worked tirelessly all summer and kept improving until the very end. Congrats!
Well, this is a refreshing a change of pace from the typical Artist-of-the-Week. Up this time around is Drum Corp International, AKA DCI to those in-the-know, which now includes you.
Were this the usual singer/songwriter or rock band, this is the part where I would talk about where they are from, or their musical influences, or key band members. But how do I write about an organization made up of multiple bands, comprised of talented folks from all over the world?
I can’t, except to say that contemporary drum corp is the torchbearer for a richly storied tradition with origins in American and Canadian military history that goes back to the first world war, with competitive circuits really coming into their own by the 1960s.
Drum Corps International formed in 1972, and is the non-profit governing body for junior (under-21) drum and bugle corps in the US and Canada.
Over at the DCI Nimbit store, once can download a metric tonne of live competition performances from prestigious venues like the Alamodome and University of Akron’s InfoCision Stadium. Recordings contain championship performances from some of DCIs brightest and boldest. You can also grab a DCI hoodie or a DCI SNOWFLAKE CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT, just in time for… September?
Last but not least, you can get DVD and Blu-ray recordings of the 2013 and 2012 world championships, as well as the cutting-edge DCI Essentials collection, which includes top performances from DCI performances of yesteryear; up-converted to HD with a 5.1 audio mix. DVD is a great way to go, as drum corp is a highly visual medium.
Incidentally, PreSonus is a proud sponsor of DCI wunderkind The Blue Devils, who recently took first place at the DCI annual championship. Not only did they win, but they got the highest score ever in the history of DCI competition—a 99.65. They’ve been using PreSonus StudioLive AI Mixers and Loudspeakers in their performances for a little under a year, now, and we’re proud to have been a part of their prestigious victory. Check out a detailed overview of their set up at: musiced.presonus.com/