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If only this rhythm method book was available when I started teaching!  Tom has created a thorough, comprehensive teaching manual covering the gamut of rhythm, simple too advanced. The layout is easy for students to follow and offers insightful comments to clarify and guide learning - an outstanding instructional resource.

Brian Nutting, Troy High School - Michigan


Rhythm Master

This method is to be utilized as a standalone rhythm teaching tool. It should be used to teach rhythmic foundations and is divided into multiple sections based on certain rhythmic structures and patterns. While teachers should be encouraged to work sequentially, the method can also be utilized in pull out units as new rhythmic figures are introduced.

Every lesson is broken down into three main sections:

  • Level 1 introduces various patterns and uses repetition to achieve mastery.

  • Level 2 takes the patterns and begins to mix some of them into attainable exercises.

  • Level 3 includes a full page etude that cycles through the many variations.


Students who complete the etude are content-level rhythmic masters! To help ensure successful teaching and student mastery, teachers should utilize the following teaching pattern:

  • Tap It: Foot taps quarter note beat while the student taps the written rhythm with hand across chest.

  • Say It: Foot taps quarter note beat while the student speaks the rhythm.

  • Clap It: Foot taps quarter note beat while student claps the written rhythm.

  • Play It: Foot taps quarter note while student plays the written rhythm on a unison note as determined by the teacher.

Rhythm Master Sequential Curiculum Book Cover

Tone Master

This book is intended to be utilized as a supplemental tool to increase

individual and ensemble tonal production. This book utilizes the same set of 10 exercises, but places them into all 12 major key centers. This ultimately allows the teacher to warm-up in foundational key signatures that support the repertoire being taught in the room on any given day.


Some liberties should be taken by the director. These include­—but are not limited to— tempo, articulation, phrasing, etc. While it is abundantly true that most band repertoire tends to live in a select set of key signatures, this should not result in students not taking the time to learn all keys as harmonically speaking, the notes we play in different chords are present because of the borrowed tonality of all the different key signatures.

Tone Master Ensemble Development Book Cover


See the Sound

Mickey Smith Jr. See the Sound Podcast

Episode 17:

Tom Torrento

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