BRIM - BREATHE IMPULSE METHOD:
BRIM Breath Impulse Worksheet #1
Based on Division of Beat Method
Breath Impulse Rhythm Counting
Solfege 101- BRIM-Breath Impulse Method:
If you need to begin with just the basic Solfege-Do,Re,Mi Syllables, this video series is for you :) It goes though the 8 notes of the Major Scale: just click “play,” wait for 4 clicks and sing along!
Why do I recommend utilizing Solfege for all areas of Music Education? I taught band for 30+ years and found during those years that my students best succeeded when their instruction began with singing in Solfege. Simultaneously, they were introduced to the basic breathing-embouchure concepts of counting, tizzling, & buzzing all while singing on pitch*. Although instrument matching was done several different ways during my career, the most successful process was with two teachers (both Brass Players) working together 4 to 6 weeks at the beginning of the 6th grade year. We utilized a band room and adjoining portable classroom. During this time, one teacher introduced tone-production for brass instruments while the second teacher did woodwinds and percussion. A marimba and piano became primary tools for getting students to sing while using worksheets. Later, an overhead CPU projector, followed even later by a Smartboard, helped students visualize the keyboard and learn the major scale via Solfege. (*I implemented variations on this process when teaching Chorus and Strings.)
We highly recommend the Division of Beat Method be used to start beginners. Also, listening to the (Division of Beat) Tape is invaluable at any time in one’s career, especially for music education majors and first-time teachers preparing to teach beginners. We believe listening to the Division of Beat Method Tape will revolutionize one’s teaching.
We have taken the extra step of creating audio visual worksheets which may prove quite valuable via online distance learning/teaching as well as upon return to full classes / rehearsals. CPU Projector or Smartboards can be most useful in this process.
We suggest singing on-pitch whenever possible, rather than monotone off-pitch counting. The pulse-vibrato utilized here helps teach & reinforce breathing concepts, tone production, pitch matching and ear training. When “mouthpiece matching” beginners, our personal goal was to have students be able to sing a Major Scale in Solfege.
Most especially, to be able to sing 'Ti-Do', the 7th-8th Scale Degrees. Brass players should be able to buzz this interval on mouthpieces alone. Simultaneously, Woodwinds need to master fundamentals of reed assembly & tone production with mouthpiece-headjoint alone, but also need to recognize & sing a major scale. Thus, when starting with full instruments, tone-production, pitch control, and intonation issues will be minimized. Additionally, basic concepts of rhythm, pulse, note values, and counting will have been covered once, especially if these BRIM worksheets are utilized from early-on in the process.
Suggestions and requests are welcome and encouraged as we continue to seek more efficient methods of teaching, especially during this time of pandemic.
Please feel free to write us
Vocal Warm-up and C Major Tonal Ladder video tutorial is a living worksheet. It demonstrates an "On Pitch" Breath Impulse-(BRIM)-based counting system utilized primarily by bands using the Division of Beat Method (published by Southern Music Company). Though ‘Takadimi’ has been all the rage, especially in the choral music world, we believe our Solfege-BRIM based method for teaching music on-line is preferable, particularly for instrumental music. Our system utilizing BRIM & Solfege, evolved while building the Irmo School Band Program which performed from London to Seattle to Carnegie Hall, as well as the Midwest Band Clinic in Chicago in 1998 & 2000, eventually winning The Sudler Cup in 2000 for Irmo Middle.
We believe Matching Pitch first and foremost is The Most Important Pre-Band Training, along with good breath-control. Embouchure placement (matching students to the best instrument choice) is crucial to lowering drop-out rates. Instrument companies are coming out with kits to be used at home, with the band director guiding the process on-screen ( via Zoom, etc.).
We believe that our Solfege-BRIM based system can be introduced within this process, with the director modeling counting (on-pitch), singing (with solfege) and buzzing for the students and parents. This Breath Impulse Video Worksheet can help expedite the instrument starting process, even via distance learning.
Please also see our Solfege 101 videos for guidance in basic ear training, note reading, and music theory introduction.
Our Vocal Warm-up and C Major Tonal Ladder video can also bee seen as below.