Day #1 | Sussex Rocks 2013 with Richard Perkins

sussex-rocks-2013-logoDay 1 of the half-term Sussex Rocks course at CMP Studios started with a group discussion about which songs to perform at Winter Gardens on Tuesday 29th October.

The Sussex Rocks bands will be performing from 2:40pm and again at 3:30pm in the Floral Hall at Winter Gardens, as part of the Eastbourne Youth Event. Come along – it’s free!

During the song discussion lots of ideas were shared, including; ‘Teenage Kicks’ by The Undertones, ‘Sunshine of Your Love’ by Cream, and Queen’s ‘We Are The Champions’.

The group split into two scratch bands and immediately began learning, arranging and rehearsing songs in the studio live room.

Group 1 rehearsed ‘Tennage Kicks’, ‘Sunshine of Your Love’ and ‘We Are The Champions’.

sussex-rocks-group1

Group 2 rehearsed ‘Paranoid’, ‘Eye of the Tiger’, and attempted ‘Crazy Train’.

sussex-rocks-group2

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Sussex Rocks 2013 with Richard Perkins | Day 2

sussex-rocks-2013-logoStudents returned for Day 2 of Sussex Rocks and the group split into their instrumental classes for the daily technique expander sessions.

The guitarists resumed their caterpillar exercises; working with patterns in 4-note groupings per string along with a click track (quarter, eighth and sixteenth notes at 60bpm).

The guitarists then learned to play all the guitar parts for ‘Wishing Well’ (Free) to perform later in the afternoon band performance session.

Song structure: “Wishing Well”  by Free
Intro (Main riff)
Verse 1
Pre-chorus
Chorus 1
Interlude (Main riff)
Verse 2
Pre-chorus
Chorus 2
Interlude (Main riff)
Middle-8
Solo
Bridge
Outro (Main riff)

sussex-rocks-2013-day2

After lunch students were put into new bands; Sussex Rocks encourages its participants to work with as many musicians as possible to expose students to the widest possible range of musical styles and genres. The bands then descended to the practice rooms to begin rehearsing songs for the performance session.

The performance session is designed to give students a chance to showcase their songs, be it work-in-progress or completed song. Each band has approx. 5-mins to perform their chosen song and the class and instructors give critical feedback on their performance.

Songs performed in today’s session included:
Wishing Well‘ by Free
Smoke on the Water‘ by Deep Purple
Paranoid‘ by Black Sabbath
Billie Jean’ by Michael Jackson

Intro Riff: “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson

Billie Jean featured as a single on Michael Jackson’s mega-selling 1982 album ‘Thriller’. The song was written by Jackson about a real-life encounter with a groupie. I have arranged the string and bass parts for electric guitar – have fun!

bill-jean-mj-intro-riff

Side Note
riffstation-logo-250I have been trialling Riffstation (http://www.riffstation.com) during Sussex Rocks 2013 and would encourage anyone to download the generous 30-day free trial from the website. The software allows you to change pitch, tempo, add click track, beat match, analyses and identifies chords and has a great sweeping EQ so you can remove guitar and vocal parts to create your very own backing tracks.