Pedal to the Kettle

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Kirk J. Gay

General Info

Year: 2009
Edition: 1st Edition
Publisher: Tapspace
Difficulty: Elementary to Advanced
Cost: Book Cost - $22.50   |   Supplemental Books - $0.00


This method book offers supplemental material that provide engaging etudes that cover different technical and musical ideas to prepare the percussionist for the challenges that lie ahead in the professional realm. This collection of etudes was written for the intermediate percussionist with a background in timpani and a strong idea of fundamental percussive playing.


Etude 1
Etude 2
Etude 3
Etude 4
Etude 5
Etude 6
Etude 7
Etude 8
Etude 9
Etude 10
Etude 11
Etude 12 Gliss-a-rondo
Etude 13
Etude 14
Etude 15
Etude 16
Etude 17
Etude 18
Etude 19 Tympanic Metamorphoses
Etude 20
Etude 21
Etude 22 Grace (notes) Under Pressure
Etude 23 Beatin' & Bangin'
Etude 24 Bartók-o-rama
Etude 25 Extend Yourself
Etude 26 Rolling Down the Highway
Etude 27 Double Stop Trouble
Etude 28 A Flat Etude
Etude 29 High Performance Muffler
Etude 30 Déjà Vu All Over Again
Etude 31 Rock of the 80's
Etude 32


The Black Hammock
The Back Forty
Fanfare for Some New Drums
Los Cinco de Clubs
The Attack of the Freezing Fog


Student Reviews

" This book is provides technical playing etudes in a creative and understandable way. Simple enough to be able to teach a beginner out of, while also remaining interesting to an intermediate player." - Denver Ridgway

Organization: The Table of Contents starts the book and spans one page, followed by an introduction. The rest of the book is divided into three sections: Two-Drum Etudes, Four-Drum Etudes, and Solos for Timpani. Each etude has a brief description, with the etudes towards the end of the book having more extensive descriptions and special titles. The last page, along with a paragraph on the back cover, contains a biography about the author.

Content: The Introduction is very important, as it states that the book was not intended to be used without other books being utilized as it is not a method book and lists several recommended method books to use in conjunction with this book. The rest of the introduction lists notes about what to think about when practicing out of this book, practicing tips, and acknowledgments. The description of each etude lists the focus of the etude and elaborates on some parts which may need emphasis or explanation. Starting in the Four-Drum Etudes section, the descriptions become lengthier as they require more musicality. The solos reflect this the most, with an exception being “Fanfare for Some New Drums.”

Uses: Taking into account that this is an etude book and is intended to be used in conjunction with other books, I would say this book would be given to a high school or college student for their own use, with an instructor assisting them with any issues or questions about the etudes. If a middle school has timpani available, a well-skilled student of their age may be able to build their skills with this book.

Rating: Having played some etudes out of this book myself, I can say that they are not necessarily challenging but provide the player with an opportunity to express themselves musically and have fun with some of the themes that are present in these etudes and solos. While I feel no new ground is being broken with any of these pieces, they are a good resource for students to maintain their technique and build their musicality. 4/5. User:Hondogracias


Additional Study Materials

Books for Percussion by this Author

Gay, Kirk J. Pedal to the Kettle. Portland, OR: Tapspace Publications, LLC, 2009.

Works for Percussion by this Composer

Fear Cage
Mysterious Barrier
Overture for Timpani

Additional Resources