LeAnne Martin
Christians in the Arts

Monday, February 19, 2007

Brad Williams: The Heartbeat of the Orchestra

Classically trained percussionist Brad Williams is not only an Audio/Visual Specialist and Director of Percussion at a private Christian school, Wesleyan School, but also a freelance musician. He plays in a four-piece band in addition to a duo—both of which cover a wide variety of music including jazz, blues, rock, and country. When he is not busy with these two projects or his day job, he freelances in “every kind of group imaginable.”

LeAnne: What are some of your favorite classical pieces? What is your favorite instrument to play?

I am a fan of 20th century classical music and I love the music of the Hungarian composer Bela Bartok. He was so committed to presenting the music of his country to the world. His pieces are based mostly on Hungarian folk melodies and I enjoy them as a performer and listener.

I love the entire percussion ‘family’ but I enjoy playing timpani the most. It is the heartbeat of the orchestra and the foundation for the rest of the group. I suppose that there is a connection with my love for timpani and the fact that I am now a bass guitarist.

LM: Why are you drawn to music?

I remember hearing all kinds of music as a child. My mother is a talented singer and my father is a great pianist. I was exposed to such a variety of musical styles. There was always a song playing at my house! As I think back, I can recall that music affected me emotionally, even at a young age. I love the fact that music is so expressive, yet can be performed with such precision.

More from Brad Williams on Thursday.

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