There is one musician that every drummer should respect and get along with to be successful. That is the bass player. A good bass player can make a drummer’s life so much easier – while a bad bass player can make for a long and painful gig.
Developing a Closed “Buzz” Roll on snare drum is essential. Not only for a concert percussionist, but also for a drum set player. Get your “Buzz On” by practicing these exercises.
I have previously posted about playing the Clave with Meinl Pedal Mount and Afro Cuban Salsa patterns on drum set: Mambo, Salsa Cascara and Salsa Campana. Also, an explanation of the Afro Cuban clave in Clave Essentials. I have combine these postings and developed a series of drum set practice exercises.
Recently, I have been surprised that some of my colleagues are not well prepared or always act professional at rehearsals and performances. These are older musicians who should know better. I thought I would share some tips for drum set players (musicians) wanting to keep getting booked for gigs.
If you want to get paid and treated like a professional musician then you need to act like a professional musician. Here are a few things I have learned from professional working drummers and musicians over the years to keep me working and getting paid.
If you play drum set long enough, at some point you are going to hear: “You’re too loud – play softer”. Since you can’t just turn the amp volume down, you will need to be prepared for this inevitable situation. The ability to play soft and dynamically balance the ensemble is a must for a working drummer.
Most of us have a “Love – Hate” relationship with the metronome. I had a conversation this weekend with a fellow percussionist about working on the Stone “Stick Control” exercises with a metronome. She said that she was ready to throw the metronome out the window. We’ve all been there haven’t we? But there are several good reasons to almost always practice with a metronome.
If you can’t sing it or count it you probably can’t play it correctly. So for developing rhythmic accuracy sing it or count it before or while you play it. Vocal quality doesn’t matter. Rhythmic accuracy does.
Sometimes I think I practice just because I feel obligated to spend “time” on the drums. So I flip open some method books and play through various exercises at semi-challenging tempos until the hour is up. But recently I started practicing with the Pomodoro Technique.