Key Stage 3 band project 

Sound Invaders

Gold Toothed Gangster from Mexico

Watch Key Stage 2 and 3 musicians in action below! 

This was a project that was initiated by our young trumpeter, who brought in some musical ideas and riffs he had been working on. The riffs were introduced to the rest of the band, who were really positive about them. The band were given the opportunity to improvise round the riffs until there was a fixed form. Some of the band were happier experimenting than others, but there was a lot of emphasis placed on the fact that in improvising, there is no wrong way of doing it. There are no ‘wrong notes’, it’s just a matter of whether they liked the sound or not. There was plenty of opportunity given to experiment with different harmonies. There was a great deal of discussion about what worked and what didn’t work. Which led to an exploration of keys and scales appropriate to those keys.

Key Stage 3 programme of Study

· Identify and use the interrelated dimensions of music expressively and with increasing sophistication, including use of tonalities, different types of scales and other musical devices

This ‘ improvisation into composition’, was where most of the learning took place. The process continued over two or three sessions. There was also discussion of style. Professional bands were listened to, and referenced in the discussions.

· Improvise and compose; and extend and develop musical ideas by drawing on a range of musical structures, styles, genres and traditions.

· Listen with increasing discrimination to a wide range of music from great composers and musicians.

Tim then took these forms away and added texture and harmonies to them.

The band rehearsed the track. Tone, dynamics, tempo and arrangements were decided upon by the band. The track was then recorded.

· Play and perform confidently in a range of solo and ensemble contexts using their voice, playing instruments musically, fluently and with accuracy and expression

The band then discussed what they wanted from the video. Although some of the shots were taken by the tutor, many of the shots were recorded at home by the band members themselves in front of a green screen or plain background. It was important that the band members were comfortable with the shots of themselves, but also so they had editorial input.

The piece was chosen as part of Actiontrack’s On the Record project.