Drum lesson tips, Ideas, Stories and Free lessons
Similar to metacognitive knowledge, metacognitive regulation or "regulation of cognition" contains three skills that are essential.
In 2021 information on learning to play the drum is easy to find. It's pretty much all out there for "Free". While writing this I searched, "How many drum videos are there on YouTube?" Answer: 192,000,000
Where to start? Good question if you've never played before.
First let's consider what's good about YouTube drumming videos.
Second, what's not so good about YouTube drumming videos.
So, what does a coach/teacher do in 2021?
So, if you are getting frustrated with spinning your sticks while watching YouTube and not moving forward consider calling me. I can help get you started.
Playing drums alone has its joys, but eventually you likely want to try it with a group. I've been playing over 45 years with groups great and small: Forty-five years of joy, excitement, disappointments, embarrassments, and more than a few triumphs. I've a few miles left in me yet too. So, let me offer some general suggestions for those looking for their first group.
Prepare to play: A review of critical skills to play in a band or orchestra
Conclusion: Be ready to play, be confident, know some tunes. Do you need to have professional skills to play? No, there is a group for everyone.
The Hunt: Where beginners can start.
For school age musicians.
Depends on your goals. Humble or ambitious?
Slightly more difficult if:
Drums are difficult if:
Drums are formidable if:
Each level takes a different level of commitment and resource allocation.
If I can help you get started. Call me.
Is there any cure for snare drum lust? Nope.
Once you've been playing for awhile, have a few means, and reach a certain age it starts.
The collecting and hoarding of snare drums. Like a former colleague and teacher Paul DeLong, I've got enough drum sets. But you can always squeeze another snare in.
My latest acquisition: Tama SLP Vintage Poplar Maple Snare 14x5.5
We'll be playing trad jazz on it come the spring and jamming starts up again.
Learning to play the drums is a long-term project. We must learn posture, grip, timing, reading, transcription, ear training, rudiments, beats, fills, repertoire, the list goes on. Oh, and develop endurance.
But sir, I just want to thrash to my favorite tunes?
So what do we do?
For beginners I suggest spending 70% of your time playing along with your favorite recordings. Thrash, bash, and scream out your joy.
Spend the other 30% on the technical side of drumming and your teacher's homework assignments. All your drumming heroes at some point in their drumming journey got down to business and spent that 30% thoughtfully and methodically learning the business side of playing the drums. As time went on, they worked out their own ratios.
Side note to parents and adult students. Technical progress is needed to maintain enthusiasm. Not unlike other human endeavors. The trick is not to kill the joy of movement that thrashing about gives, while making time to learn to how play the drums.
If I can help, call me.
"It's all about time" Terry Clarke
Job number 1. Keeping time. Full stop. So, are people born with good time or is it trainable?
Of course a student can learn to play with good time. Ask any teacher or older musician and they will tell you, kids today are more skilled and more numerous and back in the day. Why is that? Many reasons, but one is the abundance and access to expert instruction. Live and on YouTube. So, take heart.
Musical time is about muscle memory, ear training, and hand skills. Try this real simple exercise with the various metronome techniques. Over time it will help your time, feel, and hand technique while warming up your hands to practice.
(It looks simple until the metronome moves. )
Now the techniques:
1. Even strokes between the hands, no loud or faint notes. Every note the same volume.
2. No rushing when the time value doubles in tempo between the quarter and eighth notes.
3. Relaxed grip.
4. Good rebound.
Challenge levels, metronome games.
Call me, I can help.
How I will be spending some practice time over the holidays, preparing this piece. A fun solo piece for the snare drum.
Good hand skills are the core competency of drumming. Learning some solo repertoire is a fun way of going about it.
If you swing them a bit, they morph into a New Orleans Roll offs or drum solos pretty fast.
David Story, drummer, pianist, online music teacher