The Unsexy Fundamentals

I love teaching drums.  The most rewarding part is meeting new people, watching them progress, and helping them on their journey to become better drummers and musicians. Yet, I’ve noticed the learning curve is not a linear one. There are many set-backs along the way, and as an instructor, I often find it challenging to […]

Rates & 16th Note Variations

As a drum teacher I’ve noticed that one of the most difficult things for beginner drummers is to switch rates, e.g., to go from triplets to 16th notes, and moving between different 16th note variations. This short exercise is designed so you can play along with me (or the click only), get comfortable with counting, […]

Sugar Soul Wednesdays @ Hawaiian Brian’s

In January, The Project (@jaykeyzproject) started to host a weekly Neosoul/Funk/HipHop flavored jam session at Hawaiian Brian’s, in Honolulu. We usually open the night at 10 PM with a short set, and then invite people up to jam and improvise. It’s a great opportunity to hang, vibe, network, and play with some of Hawaii’s top […]

Get a Grip

Other drummers have asked me about my (default) grip. Just flip a stick and catch it. That’s it: The brilliance of simplicity. Note: I use a middle finger fulcrum as my “home position,” the index finger comes in to close the hand, add control and pressure, only when necessary (fast doubles, press rolls, etc.). This allows […]

Brush It Off

I love playing the brushes. There’s a meditative, soothing quality to it. Playing brushes can assist you in developing better timing and flow (because of circular/elliptical stroke patterns) — which will also show when playing with sticks. All time great brush players include Papa Jo Jones, Clayton Cameron, and Jeff Hamilton. A little history on […]

16th Note Hi-Hat Variations Loop

Here’s a cool exercise one of my teachers shared with me, a long time ago: You play 14 different 16th note variations on the hi-hat, one per measure, while keeping a continually repeated pattern (ostinato) on the bass drum and snare. The bass drum syncopation includes a note on the “a” and “&” of the […]

Play As You Are – Holiday Discount

For a limited time only you can get my Kindle ebook Play As You Are for $2.99! Here’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. […]

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, […]

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 […]