Static Electricity

by John Riggio

January 9th is Static Electricity Day, and being fans of cross curricular learning, we've published a song about it. And in true Plank Road fashion, this song is not only educational, but fun! In order to perform it, you'll need singers of course, but you'll also need at least one brave soul who can rap. In the studio, we utilized four such talented individuals to perform the rap sections, and alternated them on the recording. You may find this an easier way to do it with your students.

The sung portions of this tune are very easy and repetitive. During the rap section at bar 9 (starting with pick-ups), your "rap artists" will rap their lines, and the singers respond with their own rapped line. This changes a bit in the coda, where we have a single rapper say the Van de Graaff generator line, then we add another rapper on the repeat, then everyone comes in on the 3rd and 4th times. If this is a bit confusing, have a listen to our Performance/Accompaniment recording for a demonstration.

This song uses lots of sound effects, everything from high voltage sparks to balloon squeaks to lightning strikes. (An interesting fact for your students is that lightning is a result of static electricity, and is actually a ginormous electrostatic discharge – only a lot bigger than the shock you get touching a doorknob!) The effect we used during the section at bar 19 is called a Jacob's Ladder, which we modified so it would sound in time with the groove.

Kudos to our rap artists on this song: Riley, Kelsey, Carrie, and Avery. You guys did a great job!

Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.