Hope all of those in the US had an enjoyable Fourth of July weekend! Here are a few quick updates.
Right after the Turnaround:Arts summer retreat, I returned to Philadelphia to help my friend and colleague Jason Chuong with his Alternative Ensemble course at Villanova University. I had a blast helping the last two days, and being of assistance helping the students with their bucket drumming compositions. Above is a photo of the students performing their rock band piece for their fellow classmates. Once again many thanks to Vic Firth and Remo for their contributions to the workshops.
This past Wednesday I taught another Alternative Ensemble/Bucket Drum Workshop at the University of the Arts for educators! I had a blast returning to my alma-matter to teach educators about drumming in the learning environment.
On a side note – A few months ago I was offered the Drum Set position of the 2014/2015 Mamma Mia National Broadway Tour! It was a surreal phone call and email to receive, but due to my commitment to the School District of Philadelphia and Villanova, I had to respectfully decline. I truly appreciate the opportunity, and hope one day I’m available for the opportunity.
Finally, I have a few upcoming shows – One is in Delaware with the George Weldon Jazz Trio on July 17, and the other is Tango’s in Atlantic City with Nicole Tranquillo on July 18th. You can check out the dates page for more info on both gigs.
Until next time!
Wow! What an exciting opportunity…
In an earlier post, I mentioned that I was given the opportunity to present at the Turnaround:Arts summer retreat – and what a great experience it was! I arrived yesterday (June 29th) afternoon and was greeted by everyone at TA with open arms, along with all the attendees. I was lucky enough to meet a few of them at the welcoming ceremony/dinner, and saw a great performance from students of a Turnaround:Arts school!
Today started with an early breakfast where I was able to meet more Administrators and Teachers from across the US, then it was finally time for the workshop. It’s a wonderful feeling to see individuals break out of their comfort zone to try something new, like playing a bucket like a drum!
I’d like to thank everyone at Turnaround:Arts, especially Anthony, Lindsey, Katy, and Rachel for their endless support and assistance leading up to the event, as well as my drum families – Vic Firth, Remo, and Master Crafted Drums.
I wish I could have stayed longer, but I’m off to Villanova to help with an Alternative Ensemble course for Music Educators!
Vic Firth recently started their video feature – “The Shed Sessions” were people could submit videos playing along to a track that would be pieced together with a performance from Gerald Heyward. I submitted a video, which is featured on Vic Firth’s website for the week!
Check it out!
You can also watch my isolated drum track here
Although updates have been sparse, there’s a good reason for it. I’ve been busy with a few things – teaching at Villanova, performing, and a few other things. This update will allow you to catch up with what I’ve been doing.
Teaching – We were able to start a bucket drum ensemble at Villanova! The director of music activities asked if I would be interested in starting a percussion ensemble, and I was honored he asked. Instead of creating a traditional ensemble with standard percussion equipment, I gave the idea to begin one where students could play on buckets, trash cans, and other non-traditional musical instruments. After a few months of organizing, rehearsing, etc, the students were able to perform at their spring concert back in April along with a T-shirt fundraiser for the band program. The students had a blast, and I cannot wait to continue with the students there! This has also open the door for me to assist with a course for Villanova’s Summer Music Program! The course will be June 29 – July 3rd on Alternative Ensembles in the educational environment, and will be facilitated by my good friend Jason Chuong. Jason will be talking about various ways to bring alternative ensembles to the classroom, and I will be there for the last three days to help out. The course counts for graduate level credit, and is a great way for music educators to continue their studies!
The reason I’ll only be at the last 3 days of the Villanova workshop is because I’ve also been asked to facilitate a workshop for the President of the United States’ Arts and Humanities committee “Turnaround:Arts” initiative! Turnaround:Arts was an initiative started by the President’s Arts and Humanities committee that uses the arts to increase student engagement and learning environment in some of the most poverty stricken schools in the country. I’ll be teaching a workshop on bucket drumming on June 30th during their summer workshop to show administrators and teachers from throughout the country how bucket drumming can be used in the learning environment. Also, a huge thank you to Vic Firth, Remo Drumheads, and Master Crafted Drums for allowing me to represent their companies at the workshop.
Now on to some fun stuff – Along with my recent endorsement with Vic Firth, I’ve also been recently added to the Remo educational roster! It’s a dream come true to be able to represent the drumhead company that I’ve always trusted from the beginning of my drumming journey, and cannot be more excited to have them, Vic Firth, and Master Crafted Drums on my side. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Bruce at Remo for welcoming me to the Remo family!
Speaking of Vic Firth – the crew over at Vic were able to take my favorite stick, the F1, and put my signature on them! Pretty neat to look down and see your name on a stick. Also, keep an eye out for something really cool coming out sometime this week on the Vic Firth website!
This upcoming Saturday I will be returning with the George Weldon Quartet to perform at August Moon from 8-11pm! Come on out and enjoy some great Korean/Japanese cuisine while we perform various tunes from the Great American Songbook.
I look forward to seeing you there,
I’m super excited to announce that I have joined the Vic Firth family as a member of their Educational Artist roster! It has always been a dream of mine to see my name on the Vic Firth website, and it’s been a company that has been in my drumming career from day one. I would like to thank the team at Vic, and I’m looking forward to contributing to the Educational team at Vic Firth!
Until next time,
I know I’ve been pretty quiet on the site, but I just wanted to post a quick update. This past January, I spent some time in California for the 2014 NAMM show with Master Crafted Drums/MCD Percussion. This year was crazier than ever since my team was delayed back east due to 14″ of snowfall the day before they were set to fly out – which caused me to set up the booth by myself. We also had a TON of artist stop by the booth including Chris Daddy Dave, Teddy Campbell, George Spanky McCurdy, Bryan Hitt, and others to check out my drum kit and all the various snares we had on display. This is the 3rd year in a row where we had multiple people tell us we had the best sounding kit at the show, which is one of the best compliments MCD owner Mike can receive.
I’ve also been busy setting up my schools at the School District of Philadelphia with the drum lesson schedules, along with keeping up with everything at Villanova. Both my high schools (Overbrook, and Bartram) are starting Drum-lines, and all my other schools are doing an excellent job learning everything I throw at them. Villanova is great as always, and will soon be another university with an alternative ensemble! More on that soon….
Although I haven’t been playing out as much as I use to, I have a few things on the calendar including some private parties with the George Weldon Jazz Trio. I also will be playing percussion for Plymouth-Whitemarsh High School’s Spring musical In the Heights March 20 – 22nd! It will be great to go back to my Alma Matter, and contribute to another successful show.
That’s all (that I can really talk about) for now. Thank you for reading this far, and I cannot wait to share more (exciting) news very soon!
I hope the kick-off to the holiday season has been a great one. I have been a little vacant from updating the site, posting new videos, or photos since I’ve been busy working with the students at Villanova, and my private students from the greater Philadelphia area. What better way to pick everything back up than an update!
First off – I have a few upcoming gigs with the George Weldon Jazz Trio. The first gig we will be at Scoogi’s Classic Italian Restaurant this Saturday, December 7th from 7:30PM-11:30PM. The second gig we will be returning to August Moon Saturday, December 14th from 8pm-11pm. Come on out and enjoy some great food while we serenade you with various Jazz songs from the great american song book. I’ve also been asked to join the Villanova University alumni band for their holiday performance at St. Joseph’s Villa in Flourtown, PA! I’m not sure if this is an open event or not, so keep an eye out on the dates page for updates!
If you have seen a few of my recent posts on the various social media outlets, you may have noticed that I have MCD zip-up hoodies for sale! Only a few were made for this initial run, and they’re the perfect gift for the drummer in your life. The zip-up features our logo on the left brest as well as across the back of the hoodie. Hoodies are a on the heavier side (10 oz) so they’ll definitely keep you (or your drumming loved one) warm!
Recently, I talked to Jacqueline Cassell of the entertainment blog Entertwine about my career as a drummer, educator, and A&R guy at MCD Percussion/Master Crafted Drums. Check out the write up in the “Rising Artist” section of the Entertwine site!
Many thanks to Jacqueline for the feature. You can check out the interview in its entirety at http://entertwine.net/rising-artist-nick-costa/
You can also check out past press features on the Links page!
Just a quick update with some upcoming gigs…
This Saturday (10/19) I will be performing with the George Weldon Jazz Quartet for Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition’s Northern Lights of Life gala. It’s a great event filled with food and entertainment, and it’s all for a great cause! If you would like to come out, you can make a reservation/sponsorship here.
Next Saturday October 26th I will be returning to Villanova University for their home game against Maine. I will be walking around with the band/drum-line during their pre-game tailgate, and will be with the band in the stands. If you come out, make sure to come see us and maybe the drumline will serenade you during “Hey Baby”.
Also on Sunday October 27th, I will be playing drums for the services at Valley Point Church in Glen Mills, PA. After talking to their Worship Director in regards to the production, it sounds like it will be a great day. If you’re in the Glen Mills area, come out!
Finally, I will be returning to Scoogi’s in Flourtown with the George Weldon Jazz Trio for our 1st Saturday of the month residency. We will be moving to the bar area, so I would advise that you make reservations since space is limited!
Detailed info for all the above, and additional gigs can be found on my dates page!