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Who’s Your Drumming Hero?

Who do you want to be when you grow up?  Or to rephrase this question for someone who plays the drums, what drummer do you most want to play like?

Usually it’s a drum fill or the way they play a favorite song that gets you interested in a drummer.  And the more you listen to them the more you like what they play.  Soon you can imagine yourself playing just like them, maybe even taking their place in their current band.

It’s a great learning experience and a lot of fun to research a famous drummer’s background.  I use drum heroes to further not only my playing ability but also my musical career.  I try to learn from what they play AND from their musical experiences.

Who Are My Drum Heroes?
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6 Simple but Powerful Drum Beats – Part 2

This is the second part of a two part post that introduces 6 of the most important drum beats.  If you missed part 1, you can see it here:  6 Simple but Powerful Drum Beats – Part 1

If you know these 6 drum beats, you can play any rock, pop and country song written in the past 50 years.  As I mentioned in the Part 1, these beats are easy to learn, easy to remember, and form the basis for learning any song imaginable.  Knowing these beats will allow you to get your first drum audition with a band and jump-start your musical career!

If you need to refresh your memory about how to read drum music, visit this post: The Key to Reading Drum Music.

So let’s take a look at beats 4 through 6: Slow Blues, Blues Shuffle and Bo Diddley.
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6 Simple but Powerful Drum Beats – Part 1

Did you know that by learning just 6 simple drum beats, you can play almost any rock, pop and country song ever written?  Pretty amazing, huh!

These six drum beats are easy to learn, easy to remember, and form the basis for learning any song imaginable.  Knowing these beats will allow you to get your first drum audition with a band and jump-start your musical career.

This is the first in a series of blog posts where you’ll learn how to play these 6 powerful drum beats. In this post you’ll learn a little bit about the first 3 beats. In the next post, we’ll quickly cover beats 4-6.  Then in 6 future blog posts, you’ll learn how to play each beat by breaking it down, starting with something you already know and gradually adding to it.

I believe that you can become the best drummer possible by constantly learning songs, lots of songs!  Listening to music helps you learn from other drummers, what they play and how they work with other musicians.  Learning the drum beats and fills played by top drummers on recorded music helps you have a strong foundation on which to build your own style.  And playing along with recordings helps you improve your tempo, and gives you a feel for playing with a band.

I’m working on a drum book that includes a list of the best play along songs for drums.  As I was researching which songs to include on the list, I was surprised that all the songs I listened to could be played with 6 drum beats.  Sure, there are some minor variations, but you can sound good playing all of the most popular rock, pop and country songs in the past 50 years by knowing 6 drum beats.

So what are the most powerful, most important drum beats?

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How to Prepare for Your Next Audition or Big Gig

Are you nervous about your first audition to play drums in a band?  You might not feel prepared and you’re not sure what to do next.  Or maybe it’s not your first audition.  Perhaps you’ve had other auditions but you’re still feeling uncomfortable about playing with musicians you don’t know.

Or maybe it’s a gig in front of more people than you’ve ever entertained before.  I get butterflies when I know the crowd’s going to be over several hundred people.

Or how about playing in front of your toughest critics:  family and friends?  That’s always worth some butterflies in your stomach!

And there’s one more scenario that I’m going through right now.
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What ARE Drum Rudiments?

Can you imagine a chat between God and the very first drummer?  With apologies to the great comedian Bill Cosby and his “Noah” routine, the conversation could have gone something like this:

God (in a large booming voice): Cave Man!
Cave Man: What? Somebody call? Who is that?
God: It’s God, Cave Man.
Cave Man:  ……Riiight!  What you want?  I’ve been good.
God: I want you to play a drum.
Cave Man: ……Riiight!  ……What’s a drum?
God: Hollow out a short log.  Kill and skin an animal.  Stretch the skin over one of the ends of the hollow log.  Then play the 40 drum rudiments by hitting the skin with 2 sticks.
Cave Man:   ……Riiight!  ……What’s a rudiment?

What IS a rudiment, anyway?

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