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Percussion Anyone doubling on drum kit?

DyerA12

New Member
Messages
16
Just curious if anyone else in the cafe is doubling or learning on drum set? I've been playing for about four months now and learning from the ever so talented Dave Wonsey. It's been great and I love playing it (I've also noticed it's helped with my sight reading rhythms as well).
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
I started a couple years ago with bongos and congas. Last spring I bought a new drum set. So I've been starting in on the drums for about a year now. Although I haven't been practicing diligently all that that. I started off playing various grooves and learning the limb coordination of playing drums, hi-hat and cymbals individually. My teacher for that was Tommy Igoe (via his video DVDs, not in person).

I got both his Groove Essential DVD's 1 and 2. I haven't gone through all the grooves yet, but I'm getting a taste for the different styles of drumming.

More recently I've become interested in learning sticking rudiments. So I'm starting to get serious about studying the rudiments themselves and this is taking time to learn. In a sense it has set me back to "Square one". Because I originally never knew any "official rudiments". I just played intuitive rolls, and fills, etc. But now I'm really getting into the science of learning all these different rudiments and various sticking techniques to play them efficiently.

To that end I bought 4 more DVDs.

1. Tommy Igoe "Great Hands for a Lifetime"
2. Jo Jo Mayer "Secret Weapons for Modern Drummers" <- this one is SUPER!!!
3. Benny Greb "The Language of Drumming"
4. Todd Sucherman "Methods & Mechanics for Useful Drumming"

I could have bought a second drum set for the price of all these videos!

But they are truly worth it. I use them constantly. I have a TV set up in front of my drum set just for these lessons.

Here's a schematic of my drum set:



I bought a 5-piece set of Gammon Drums. They were the cheapest drum set I could find at $199 in black. I half expected to get some real junk, but I was very pleasantly surprised. These are fantastic drums. Very solid hardware, very pretty, and they tuned up really nice and I'm very pleased with the sound.

The two small drums to the left of the snare are actually my bongos. I bought a stand for them and they sound great with sticks as part of the kit. The two drums to the right of the floor tom are my congas (they are actually half-conga). But they add a dimension to the kit too. Plus the bongos and congas can always be played by hand too. I'm kind of "storing" them in with the drum kit and playing them with sticks. It actually adds some cool dimensions.

I included a 10" Firecracker snare drum in this drawing to the left of the stool. I don't really have that yet. That's like the final piece that I would like to add eventually to complete this as my "dream kit".

I just now replaced all the cymbals with brand new Meinl HCS cymbals. Including the hi-hat cymbals. The cymbals that came with the drum set were no-name cheap cymbals. These Meinl HCS cymbals really make the whole kit feel like an expensive set now. They add a lot more depth and character to the music.

From left to right starting with the hi-hat:
14" hi-hat
18" crash
8" splash (mounted on a 6" riser on top of the 18" crash)
20" ride
10" splash.

In addition I added a double bass drum pedal set. I'm learning to do rudiments on the bass drum pedals too. I figure I may as well learn the rudiments using both hands and feet. Benny Greb kind of gave me this idea after recommending that his "drum alphabet" should be played on the bass drum as well as on the hi-hat.

So now I'm looking at the bass drum as being a far more dynamic player in the kit than I did before.

Anyway, sorry for the ramble, but I'm really getting into these drums so I thought I'd take the opportunity here to talk about them a bit. ;}

By the way, I actually only started playing the sax about 4 months ago. So I guess the sax is the 'second' instrument compared with the drums.

I also play guitar too, but I've been playing the guitar for many years.
 
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kevgermany

ex Landrover Nut
Subscriber
Messages
21,947
I'm really impressed by anyone who can drum. All those different beats/rhythms at the same time. My youngest is learning, but his father is hopeless. But it's noisy.... And he's only playing with ear protectors. His drum teacher is half deaf, not sure why :)))
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
Don't forget the wood block, cow bell, and coconut shell's, no kit is complete without them.
Rob.
I actually have a cowbell and a pair of sambago bells (which actually sound like wood blocks)

Here's the sambago bells:

41UwxcJr0yL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

I use these a lot actually. I tried to draw them in my drawing of my drum set. Look close between the toms on the bass drum. I have the cowbell angled toward the left, and these sambago bells angled to the right.

These look like cheap plastic toys, and I guess they are indeed plastic. But they sound good. They have a nice loud solid sound that sounds like woodblocks. They're supposed to be a third apart in pitch. I don't know about that, but they do sound good played as a pair. They're made by Latin Percussion.
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
I'm really impressed by anyone who can drum. All those different beats/rhythms at the same time. My youngest is learning, but his father is hopeless. But it's noisy.... And he's only playing with ear protectors. His drum teacher is half deaf, not sure why :)))
Well, I originally got into drumming because of the fact that I was horrible at trying to keep a beat. And I also couldn't play with a metronome very well either. I'm getting better at keeping beats and I'm also getting better at playing with a metronome. I think this is improving my musicality in general on all instruments.

I too was totally blown away by the need for "limb independence". When I first got my drum set I couldn't even play tap the hi-hat with 8th notes and play a solid back-beat on the snare on 2 and 4. Just that was driving me batty. And then to put in the bass drum pedal seemed hopeless.

But I just stuck with it and kept practicing and it came to me a lot quicker than I had ever imagined it could. In fact, when I first got my drums and sat down at them my heart sank because I was sure I had just wasted a bunch of money on an instrument that I would NEVER be able to play.

But fortunately I stuck with it and now I'm starting to get into some more advanced stuff. I'm still not a "good" drummer by any stretch of the imagination, but I'm definitely progressing.

I mean look at me now! When I first got these I thought I'd never be able to play fancy things on a single bass pedal. Here I am already moving up to double bass pedals! What, at first, seemed formidable and potentially beyond my wildest dreams, has now become something that I'm looking to expand on.

All though in truth, you might say that I'm "jumping the gun" on these double bass pedals. I haven't mastered the single pedal yet really. I mean, I can play it, but only in limited grooves. However, the reason that I bought the double bass pedals now is because I'm just starting to learn specific sticking rudiments using the hands. So I thought this would be a good time to get the double bass pedals so I can simultaneously get started on learning some of these same rudiment forms using my feet.

So in other words, I don't expect to be able to actually "play" double bass pedals very well for quite some time. But the sooner I get started practicing on them, the sooner the day will come when I will actually be able to play them in artistic and interesting ways.

And as far as musicality in general is concerned, I think learning to play the drums is really helping to open a lot of musical ideas. I'm already paying more attention to rhythms and beats when playing other instruments. I personally feel every musician should second on a drum set.

And every drummer should second on a chromatically pitched instrument. Drummers don't need to know anything about keys, scales, key-change-modulation, etc. So they really should second on an instrument that opens that world up for them.
 

compound

Member
Messages
457
You must have very understanding neighbours, with headphones you dont have any problem's, plus on my Roland kit 32 extra kit's programed in. Only the cymbals need upgrading. But well worth £630, Hassle free, all folds down on a frame in 2 mins. Over the years i've had , Sonor, Rogers, and Trixon, which were strangely shaped, very hip at the time. I also play organ/ keyboards, tenor/ alto sax, and guitar. Also on gig's no need to be miked up, just plug in. I started when i was eight and have played in various bands ever since. If it comes easy it's a joy, if it does'nt it's hard work, with me it seemed natural. i'm allways tapping hand's and feet in different patterns, just to keep my hands( and feet) in when i'm not playing, it keep's you on your toe's.

.
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
You must have very understanding neighbours.
I don't have any neighbors. I'm a mountain man. :)))

Well, actually there are neighbors around these parts. But they're too far away to hear me. I suppose if I'm playing outside on a calm day they could hear it. I do have one neighbor who lives just over a noll from me. They are separated by both the noll and a forest. I can see them directly but I can hear their dog bark, and I can also hear their kids playing in the swimming pool when they have parties. If they play music I've never heard it. Not even from a stereo.

I think they'd have to be listening hard even if I were playing outside.

So I'm lucky in that way. I can practice any instrument anytime I want. And I often do play drums and sax at outrageous hours of the night.

You're fortunate to be a natural drummer. I've never had that natural instinct. For some reason I've never been motivated to tap my foot to music, or dance, or anything like that. I guess in a sense I'm truly not a musically-oriented person.

I might even be 'autistic' to some degree, or have some type of condition along those lines. My sister is educated in those things and has suggested as much.

I don't do well in social situations. I just never seem to fit in very well, and I can't 'read' people. People tell me that all the time. It's not that I don't get along with people, I get along just fine. I never have problems like that. Everyone seems to like me, and there's never any hostility directed toward me, and I never get hostile with other people.

But I do often feel "out of touch", or like I just don't belong, and I feel much better when I'm alone. Thus I've become a hermit. ;}

And I think that whatever this "problem" is, it's also associated with why I don't become emotionally involved with music or have an instinctive desire to move with the beat.

I'm trying real hard to overcome this "defect" whatever it is.

I don't know if it will ever be possible, but I do have moments, especially when playing the guitar where I really start to flow with the music, and it does feel good when it happens, but it's rare.

So I'm kind of hoping that by learning the drums I might work my way into the "pocket of the groove". It may not be possible though. Whatever is wrong with me may be physical. But like I say, I get glimpses of this feeling every once in a while, so I feel like it's there, I just need to find how to lock into it more deeply.

From my perspective, people who do this naturally are extremely lucky. But then, I suppose that would be the vast majority of "normal people". :)))
 

VirusKiller

Member
Messages
449
Sweet Dreamer, that's really honest of you. IMO, "normal" is only what "society" decrees it to be. I don't think that anyone is "normal", not anyone interesting anyway! It's a continuous scale from being outgoing to being introspective through to Asbergers and eventually autism at that end of the spectrum. I do enjoy social interaction, but I'm more comfortable than most with my own company. Everyone is different and capable of learning and changing. I didn't start to "read" people until I was in my 30s, and I'm pretty good at it now. If you feel more comfortable when you're alone, why shouldn't you feel that way? I'm not sure which mountains you live under, but it sure does sound like Heaven!
 

compound

Member
Messages
457
Dont put yourself down so much, your not on your own by any means. The vast majority of player's i've played with over the year's could not play the simplest rhythm on drums, that includes guitarist's, keyboard player's, brass, sax player's etc. You sometimes get the odd one who can do a little bit but most can't. I began when i was eight by playing to my dads records all the time, and i soon got into it. I used brushes with a snare not even a Hi Hat or a ride. I would say you need to play to music till you start to feel the rhyhm, and change the type of music often so you don't get into the trap of the same beat all the time. As far as the videos are concerned, they are fine for learning techniques, but they dont really teach you natural rhythm. And in my opinion that's what you need to learn first in your own time. It won't be easy but keep at it, just simple music not too fast, but easy listening stuff. And i would suggest that you get some brushes and just work on the snare and H/H or ride, also leave the bass pedal out and just tap your right foot until you know your in time. The secret is don't try to do too much at once. Once you get the basic rhythm there will be no stopping you believe me.

What sort of stuff do you do on guitar, laid back or frantic,? how's your rhythm and timing.? Timing and rhythm go hand in hand on any instrument, you've just got to work at it.By the way i'm very envious of where you live, sound's like Paradise are you in the states by any chance?. Anyway if you work at what i've mentioned you should soon see results.

Kind regards
Rob.
 

Pete C

Member
Messages
344
Another drummer here. I've been playing 2-3 years after buying £100 kit on ebay. Of course have upgraded the snare and ride cymbal and bass pedal since but still basically a simple jazz kit: 18" bass drum, floor tom; one mounted tom, crash ride and hi-hat. I've mainly been working on jazz and latin grooves, independence studies and rudiments - must say I love playing drums and have noticed a positive effect on my reading and on my sax playing. I have been out playing a few times and rehearse with a couple of bands. Keen to do more if anyone down this way (Devon) has any projects on.

Pete
 

Juju

Senior Member
Messages
280
We've got a little jazz kit, so I should try and play more regularly. I play for fun occasionally, but I don't have any clear concept... :confused: It's great fun, though!
 

Pete C

Member
Messages
344
Instead of cluttering up the trumpet thread with drum talk, thought I'd come over here and see what's happening. Any drummers at home?

Have just been working on some jazz comping patterns from John Riley's Art of Bebop Drumming - they are based on quaver triplets with either the first or first and third of the quavers missing mixed up with ordinary quavers and crotchets. I have a tendency to play the beats with just 2nd & 3rd quaver triplets like they were 3rd & 4th semiquavers of the beat, but making slow progress. Anyone know this book?

Pete
 

old git

Tremendous Bore
Messages
5,545
Used to play trombone in a New Orleans Band, N.B. not Dixieland. Found it incredibly restricting. Had a crack at flügelhorn and might go back to it.

Found when playing melodeon and keyless flute in folk bands that bodhrán players should be battered to death with their goat skin tambourines. Where to put their beater? I'll leave to your imagination, preferably whilst they are still able to feel pain, although it is doubtful whether bodhrán players ever do experience any feeling.
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
Instead of cluttering up the trumpet thread with drum talk, thought I'd come over here and see what's happening. Any drummers at home?

Have just been working on some jazz comping patterns from John Riley's Art of Bebop Drumming - they are based on quaver triplets with either the first or first and third of the quavers missing mixed up with ordinary quavers and crotchets. I have a tendency to play the beats with just 2nd & 3rd quaver triplets like they were 3rd & 4th semiquavers of the beat, but making slow progress. Anyone know this book?

Pete
I've actually had my eye on that book and CD. I haven't bought it yet though.

You'd think I have enough books and DVDs already, but I wanted to get the Bebop style just to see what they are focusing on. I'm trying to hear and feel the subtle differences between these genres.

The best I can tell so far is the following:

Jazz - based on a quarter pulse, with 8th-notes played as triplets, and usually has a strong "triplety" signature played on the hi-hat or ride. The beat is "Swung" but it's "Swung Straight" (more about that in Bebop)

Bebob - based fundamentally on the principles of Jazz, but with a pronounced "bounce" to the overall groove (i.e. the "Swing beat" itself is "Swung". So the "Swing is Swung". :))) Giving Bebop a "Bounce".

Funk - funk emerged from Jazz with the addition of displaced "back-beats" on the snare as well as displaced "kick-beats" on the bass drum. The displaced back-beats and kick-beats have become the defining characteristic of funk drumming.

I don't know if any of that is correct, but that's the impressions I have thus far in my studies.

So even though I'm already swamped with books and CDs on drumming, I'ld still like to get thin one on BeBop. The one you've mentioned here is precisely the one I've had my eye on. ;}

I also have material on Afro-Cuban drumming. Both for hand drums and as applied to a drum kit.

The key to Afro-Cuban beats is in the clave, or so they say. I'm so lame that I haven't been able to grasp the significance of this yet. I can't "feel" how the clave fits in. So obviously I don't yet have the KEY. And it's obviously important to have the key if I hope to open new doors.

The Clave

I don't know if the clave has anything to do with Jazz or BeBop, but it is said to be a key to learning Funk. At least the New Orleans second-line styles of funk. In Stanton Moore's "Groove Alchemy" he has a section on the clave and how it applies to various funk grooves. He also has this in his book on New Orleans style drumming "Take it to the Street".

I'm still trying to wrap my mind around the clave and how it is the "key". I just can't "feel" how the clave fits in. So obviously I have no key! I'll never unlock the secrets to New Orleans style drumming, or Afro-Cuban beats, until I figure out how the clave fits in to this.

I've been trying to play against various recorded calves, but so far it isn't working for me. I can't find the "groove" in the clave. I don't know if this would apply to bebop or not? This may have more to do with Afro-Cuban and funk styles.

I'm not sure exactly what bebop is. That's one reason I'd like to get Riley's book and CD.

I'm trying to find a crack in the door where I can place my foot and finally start to get a handle on some of this stuff. I keep hoping that someday something will give and hopefully once that happens it will be like a dam breaking and all sorts of grooves will suddenly become possible that previously seemed impossible.

A really good teacher could be the key! I should start looking around to see if there is anyone in my area who could help me get a handle on the clave. I'm starting to think that this could be the dam that's holding me back.

Ok, that was a ramble, but at least this time it was in the drum thread. :)))
 

compound

Member
Messages
457
Instead of cluttering up the trumpet thread with drum talk, thought I'd come over here and see what's happening. Any drummers at home?

Have just been working on some jazz comping patterns from John Riley's Art of Bebop Drumming - they are based on quaver triplets with either the first or first and third of the quavers missing mixed up with ordinary quavers and crotchets. I have a tendency to play the beats with just 2nd & 3rd quaver triplets like they were 3rd & 4th semiquavers of the beat, but making slow progress. Anyone know this book?

Pete
Hi Pete,
I've played drums all my life but never played Be-Bop, i've watched Be-Bop drummers and they all play different. They all drop Bombs with the Bass Drum and seem to do their own thing. I dont read for drums so tend to do my own thing for any type of music. All i can say is it's never let me down yet. Sorry i can't be more help. Everyone calls me a Jazz drummer but it's just how i play.
Rob.
 
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Pete C

Member
Messages
344
Hi Rob, yes I know a few drummers who play totally instinctively like you. I feel like I make more progress following a structured practise regime and having the occasional lesson. I'm feeling good today because I have started to get somewhere with developing independence in my right leg, so I can start thinking about dropping those bass drum bombs without the groove disintegrating. I was working on the comping patterns from the Riley Book again - previously I have worked through these playing the comps on the snare. Today I managed to play the first page (all be it a bit lumpily), on the bass drum. I find it strange that one day I can't do something and then all of a sudden I can. I've been practising moving the bass drum through the on and off beats in 4/4 time against a steady jazz groove but haven't been able to play all the off beats on the bass to save my life despite having mastered this with the left hand on the snare a year or two ago. Now, one of these comps involves playing a bar of off beats on the bass drum and yes, suddenly, I can do it. I love it when I have a breakthrough like that.
Pete
 

Sweet Dreamer

Senior Member
Messages
505
Now, one of these comps involves playing a bar of off beats on the bass drum and yes, suddenly, I can do it. I love it when I have a breakthrough like that. Pete
That's great! Those are the kinds of things that keep me plugging away. For a while I can't do something and it seems basically impossible, then all of a sudden I find myself actually doing it. Then the "real practice" can begin! I too, need the sheet music. I just can't listen to a beat and play it. Well, sometimes I can if it's a simple straight-forward beat. But most of the things I'm trying to learn are far from straight-forward and I really need to see precisely what each limb is supposed to be playing. I often even break the sheet music down into parts for each limb. I type them into my sheet music program and just play the limbs I want to practice to try to get a feel for just that one part. Then after I get each limb playing its part smoothly I try to put it altogether. It's been working for me. I'm definitely making progress. Just not the kind of progress I'd like to make. I want to be a super-fantastic drummer right now! Not sometime next year. But alas, I can't always get what I want.
 

compound

Member
Messages
457
Hi Rob, yes I know a few drummers who play totally instinctively like you. I feel like I make more progress following a structured practise regime and having the occasional lesson. I'm feeling good today because I have started to get somewhere with developing independence in my right leg, so I can start thinking about dropping those bass drum bombs without the groove disintegrating. I was working on the comping patterns from the Riley Book again - previously I have worked through these playing the comps on the snare. Today I managed to play the first page (all be it a bit lumpily), on the bass drum. I find it strange that one day I can't do something and then all of a sudden I can. I've been practising moving the bass drum through the on and off beats in 4/4 time against a steady jazz groove but haven't been able to play all the off beats on the bass to save my life despite having mastered this with the left hand on the snare a year or two ago. Now, one of these comps involves playing a bar of off beats on the bass drum and yes, suddenly, I can do it. I love it when I have a breakthrough like that.
Pete
Good on you Pete, if thats what suits you thats the best way to go mate, the very best of luck in your playing.
Rob.
 
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