Blog

Play As You Are – Holiday Discount

For a limited time only you can get my Kindle ebook Play As You Are for $2.99!

unnamedHere’s a short interview by takelessons.com, where we touch on the book.

As always, I remain deeply grateful for your support.

Wishing you all a very happy new year…

Beck

 

 

KICK START – Get Ready To Play!

Aspiring drummers and drum set instructors!

I updated my instructional drumming PDF “Kick Start” (40 pages).

It covers basic reading skills and coordination exercises, and helps the beginning drummer to master her first beats, fills, and gain confidence on the drum kit.

I’ve used it successfully in my teaching practice for almost two years now.

You can work through the material by yourself, but I highly recommend getting a teacher, who can help you understand the basics and fill in the blanks.

You can download it for $9.99 when you click the link below.

Happy Holidays!

– beck

DOWNLOAD KICK START

Rebound Comparison – Practice Pads

 

Testing the rebound/stick response of three different drum pads:

  • Vic Firth 12″ Pad
  • Reflexx CP1 10″
  • E-Pad 12″

I’ve been using all three of them, but if I had to pick one, it’d be the Reflexx Conditioning Pad. Simply because it gives you two rebound options (two sides) to play on, is super quiet, and smaller in diameter.

 

Drumming Videos

 

Here are two simple, yet cool triplet combos: ||:Left Right Kick:|| (Gadd is a master at this!) and then something I’ve heard Bonham do a lot: ||:Left Right Kick | Right Left Kick:||


In this songo improv I play open handed, aka left hand lead (I’m not crossing my sticks), which allows me to get around the kit more easily.


Here’s an Elvin Jones inspired afro-cuban pattern. It has a 6/4 kind of feel, and the hi-hat splashes and tom accents make it challenging to keep balance. I’ll try to follow up with a transcription, soon.


I recently came up with this cool beat:

8th note heel/toe hi-hat splashes over a polyrhythmic double stroke bass drum pattern. 1&A cymbal pattern + snare drum on 2&4.


 

Bass Drum Fundamentals

Remember: Repetition is the key. If you’re new to this, practice a little bit every day, and soon the movements will become second nature as you develop muscle memory.

HEEL DOWN

1.Your foot is flat on the footboard and you play from the ankle.

2. Your foot doesn’t leave the pedal when you wind up, but stays on the pedal throughout the sequence.

3. It’s a very light technique and mostly used at lower volumes. You only need to push down a little bit to set the beater in motion — it’s like tapping your feet on the floor.

HEEL UP

There are 3 steps to this technique:

  1. Wind Up (lift your leg)
  2. Release (the transition to step 3)
  3. The Actual Stroke (when you drop your leg)

Step two and three practically merge into one motion: you come down on the ball of your foot and immediately bounce back to release pressure. This is when the stroke happens. It sounds more complicated than it actually is.

Make sure you LIFT your leg, get your heel off the pedal, while your toes stay on the footboard. If you’re having trouble with this sequence, try practicing in socks, or shoes with leather soles.

DOUBLE STROKES

With the first tap, kick your leg up from the ball of your toes and let your foot naturally roll down to generate the second stroke. (You are no longer actively generating two strokes from your ankle, but only the upbeat. The downbeat happens automatically as your leg drops down.)

To finetune this technique, you can pull your foot slightly back on the upstroke and push it forward on the downbeat. It happens automatically at faster tempos, given you are relaxed and allow your foot to slide on the footboard.

 

Jazzy Snare-Tom Combo

Been listening to a lot of Hard Bop lately. Here’s a triplet-based lick that’s fun to play and gets you around the kit. Might have heard it from #BillyHiggins or #MaxRoach, not sure.