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With Nick Menza behind the kit, Megadeth transitioned from celebrated cult band to international superstars. Rust in Peace, the first album to feature Menza and Marty Friedman, was instantly considered a classic, sold over a million copies, got nominated for a Grammy Award, and established what many consider to be the definitive Megadeth lineup. It was the beginning of a remarkable run in which the band would release three career-defining albums and tour the world many times over.

Success was a rollercoaster ride of highs and lows: sobriety and addiction, peace and tension, laughter and anger. Until one day it all came crashing down. Despite his contributions to the band’s most iconic and enduring work, when Menza was forced to seek treatment for a debilitating tumor in his knee, he awoke from surgery to learn he was being fired from the band by the man he considered a brother and mentor, the ever-enigmatic Dave Mustaine. The devastating news sent him into a spiral of anger and frustration, followed by a dark period of self-medication that nearly killed him.

 

Megalife: The Autobiography of Nick Menza is an unflinching look at life inside of one of metal’s most successful bands, from the back of the stage to the bunks on the bus, as well as a blow-by-blow account of the tumultuous, complicated relationship between Menza and Mustaine. It is also the singular story of a self-taught musician who achieved his dreams through sheer will and determination, watched it all disintegrate, and then rebuilt himself from scratch.

While composers and percussionists are working more closely than ever with one another, there are few resources that address this collaborative relationship in depth. However, Samuel Z. Solomon, himself a percussionist and teacher, offers a comprehensive examination of the issues that percussionists and composers encounter in How to Write for Percussion. The first edition, self-published in 2004, provided musicians and music programs the world over with practical and indispensible information about issues of notation, concert production, and much more. This new edition goes even further as Solomon offers more insights derived from his personal experience as a percussionist and teacher and from his collaborations with other musicians. The second edition of How to Write for Percussion expands the survey of behind-the-scenes processes-from instrument choice and notation to logistics, execution, and concert production-to uncover all the tools a composer needs to comfortably create innovative and skilled percussion composition. Solomon also includes more excerpts and performances as well as interviews with famous percussionists and composers that capture the intricacies of percussion composition. Moreover, the second edition features an expanded text with more instruments and more analysis, plus an extensive Online Video Companion containing over nine hours of videos with demonstrations, performances, interviews, and analysis to flesh out and clarify the material in the book. This updated edition of How to Write for Percussion will appeal to a wide swath of musicians including composers, arrangers, and percussionists. Those who have already utilized the first edition will welcome the upgrade, and those who have yet to benefit from Solomon's perspective will likewise find his insights illuminating.
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