BAG Of Zombies
by Paul Jennings
We often like to start the school year where many teachers start their beginning recorders - with a song based on B, A, and G. As a twist, we based this spooky rock tune on A Dorian, often shifting from A minor to G major. Even though the center of this tonality is A, all three notes get a good workout. The song is pretty straightforward and once students are at home on the three notes, it should be easy to learn. It is repetitive with a few variations, each logically presented.
There are solo zombie FX throughout, which our kids loved doing, so be sure to share opportunities for these. Let everyone do them at the end, and direct a fade/cut-off. Also choose a separate group of students (non players) to do the stomps and claps which begin right at the top. Invite the audience to join in, too.
The section beginning at bar 17 is unique, and can be performed in several different ways. It is written to be played four times, with some students singing: "We've got a BAG of zombies." You can have some of the students play the melody while others sing, changing each time through. One thing we do recommend is to have all of the kids (and maybe your audience, which will know the tune by now) singing the third time. The tracks are just drums at this point so they will sound great with lots of people singing.
And lest we forget, this song has an optional but carefully written part for beginning alto recorders. It features their most often used notes, C, D, and E, which are the equivalent fingerings for the notes G, A, and B on soprano recorder. While the part is optional, the tune will sound bigger and better with it.
If you'd like to follow along with the piano/recorder score, we have provided a downloadable version for you on our web site.
Text is taken from Music K-8 magazine.