Snare-Drum Rolls?

• Oct 9, 2017 - 20:56

... I decided to start a separate topic here, instead of "crashing" (ahem ...) into the "cymbal rolls" topic ...

I'm composing a piece which features a military-drum (snare ...) roll, followed by two sharp strikes. That's what I'd like to =notate= and, insofar as possible, also what I'd like to =hear.=

On my downstream DAW program, of course, a very-good "drum roll" is a separate note.

But what is the correct and expected way to NOTATE a drum-roll?

Follow-on question: "and then, what's the best way (if any) to cause MuseScore playback to produce a decent sound?" (Especially: one that would most-easily translate to the DAW's environment when the composition is eventually exported, and perhaps also, the best way to export it.)


Comments

For notation (information backed-up by a gleaning of Alfred's Essential Dictionary of Orchestration):

Snare-rolls are indicated by two or three diagonal lines through the stem of the note–like tremolos). Read up on those if you're not familiar. As an aside, a flam is indicated by a slurred acciaccatura, and a drag by a set of slurred grace notes.

As to your playback question: depending on how realistic you want playback to be, standard tremolos might work just fine for you. If you want that breath of velocity variation, you might want to try a hidden staff of 32nd notes or whatever division in alignment to your roll, then mute the tremolos while making use of crescendo/de-crescendo markings and tempo variations. From what has been stated on the forums in the past, apparently cresc/dim markings don't affect playback during tremolos, giving cause to my stating the above hidden-staff work-around, although this might be in 'the works'.

Also, you might find some scores on musescore.com that make use of snare rolls the way you like. They are often downloadable and you can check them to see what was done.

Enjoy – hopefully 'twas helpful. If not, maybe this will get your topic into discussion.
Over and out.

I found the snare-roll notation, used it, and did get an acceptable roll. Certainly good enough for composition purposes.

Some sound-fonts, etc, do have a MIDI-note for a "roll," but hmmm ... there doesn't seem to be a General MIDI Level-1 note for a roll. (Which is probably why MuseScore does what it does.)

When moving a piece to completion I always move from MuseScore to a DAW, and I can insert a "proper, actually-performed" roll sound at that point.

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