View Full Version : Do you have to read music?
07-05-2007, 10:39 PM
i have never been able to read music........when i took piano i would memorize the music by hear...........then when i got to highschool i joined band and for 4 years now i learn everything by hear.......it takes me longer to learn because the people that can read drum music sucks at playing....its like that movie drumline (although i dont like to think of it like that)....but if i want to be a good drummer, i mean better than what i already am, should i, do i, NEED to learn to read music?
07-05-2007, 10:41 PM
does everyone out there know how to read music?
07-05-2007, 11:02 PM
It is of course better if you can read music, as a drummer at least drum notes.
I have to say that reading piano things or drumming notes isn`t such a problem for me, I can do it but I`m NOT a good reader, everything needs its time when I`m reading music.
My drum teacher suggests to read but he doesn`t do that in lessons with me....but maybe we should do again. Reading is just a thing of practicing.
Take this step and practice reading. I should do it more, too.
07-05-2007, 11:05 PM
Reading will help you learn new stuff and give you a different way of understanding music. More important, though, is an understanding of music theory, scales, etc., so you can understand music more deeply. I don't have excellent sight-reading skills, but I do know theory well enough so when the melodic players start talking I know what they mean.
07-06-2007, 12:55 AM
Being able to read music allows you to use instructional books, and if you're creative you can come up with a unique system that will make you a much better player than "just playing."
Also, the ability to transcribe means you can listen to ANY good drummer's playing, transcribe it, and turn it into an exercise. Much more effective than just playing along in my experience.
There's no big scary man in the sky who will smite you if you don't read music, so if you don't want to, don't. Simple as that.
07-06-2007, 02:07 AM
You know back in the 50's and what not, you HAD to read music. If a guy went on stage, drummer or whoever, and did not know how to read, other musicians would basically kick you off. Not only that, make look like a big jerk to everyone there as well.
Nothing directly related just a neat little tid bid.
07-06-2007, 05:16 AM
Well its not that i dont want too....its just that i cant get the hang of it....im not ignorant or anything.....well towards reading music i am but not in reality.....i was just wonderin if it would be better for me to read music.........thanks for the replies
07-06-2007, 01:44 PM
The biggest benifit to your playing from reading music is that you can communicate and recieve ideas from other players.
For example, check out NUTHA JASON's site, he has put tons of real cool patterns and warm ups their, which other drummers can read, adapt, and use for themselves.
07-06-2007, 02:44 PM
The good news is that reading for drums can be learned pretty quickly. It will take time to be able to read Anything instantly, but for basic reading, so that you can read from an instructional book or write something out yourself, you can learn that in short order.
It's worth the time.
07-06-2007, 02:53 PM
i learned how to read music just so i could learn fills better by different artists, like when the bass drum is kicked in the middle of a simple fill, helped me develop my fills alot, because i couldnt hear everything that was going on in the music, i play covers alot, just so yis know :)
07-06-2007, 03:41 PM
If your drumming for the pure pleasure of drumming, you wont need to read music, of course it can help you learn how certain grooves are played but if you can manage dencetly by ear, then its fine. But if you wanna become a session drummer, your gonna have to learn how to read music pretty well. ( If your in a band and you write your own stuff than its fine to)
07-06-2007, 05:52 PM
07-06-2007, 06:32 PM
haha i love your little quote, praise him with loud cymbals, rudes then so :)
I always insist that my students learn to read drum scores. It makes it so much easier to learn new stuff. I can then take certain exercises and show them how to manipulate the notes to create their own exercises. It's alot slower than showing them something on the kit and then waiting for them to process it by ear. If you get visual learning as well, it can only be better, faster and easier.
I encourage reading. I believe all drummers should develop the ability to read and play.
Wile E. Coyote
07-07-2007, 11:25 AM
It doesn't only allow you to play a drum score, it also lets you follow other instruments, like a bass and accomplany what they are doing.
I rarely use real drum parts, but very very often the bass or the guitar part.
Definitely yes, it will help.
Some will come and say... Dennis Chambers doesn't read and look at him... well, ok... Didn't work that good for the rest of mortals. And not learning to read music is just closing a door that should be open for some kinds of jobs. If you want to spend the rest of you musical life in a garage playing with an Indy band, you'll probably not need it. But you wouldn't play in my band if I wouldn't be able to send you the music by e-mail.
SLEEPY BRiGHT EYEZ
07-07-2007, 03:05 PM
Do you have to learn to read music? No, you don't have to. You can get through life without knowing how to read the language you speak either, but it sure makes things easier. ;)
If you are truly interested in studying music you will need to learn to read it. If you are having trouble learning on your own, try to sign up for a class at school or possibly take individual lessons. I played music for a couple years before learning any actual music theory. I was lucky enough to be accepted into the talented music program at my high school way back in the day, which is how I learned to read.
Wile E. Coyote
07-08-2007, 10:52 AM
You can get through life without knowing how to read the language you speak either, but it sure makes things easier. ;)
Well, I guess everything is said with that...
07-08-2007, 12:42 PM
Well, I guess everything is said with that...
That's exactly what I was going to say! I'm still always baffled when I hear people ask that question. How could you not want to?
07-08-2007, 01:37 PM
I can read normal and drum music, but I don't think you have to. Buddy Rich didn't (correct me if I'm wrong) but it will obviously help in playing different styles or if you have a musical situation which calls for reading music it would be good to be able to.
07-08-2007, 01:45 PM
You know, its not mandatory, but it'll give you an edge over people who can't read music.
I was applying to be accepted into a music school with drums and I got in and it wasn't because I was that much better as a player than the rest, it was because I was the only one who could read the drum scores that they gave us.
I think that book...modern reading in 4/4 or something like that d: that I have, has helped a lot in my ability to grasp rhytmic figures, for faster melody reading I don't know anything besides actually playing sheet music with some instrument.
07-08-2007, 03:19 PM
When you go into session drumming, it is usually a case of giving you sheet music and letting you get on qith practicing it. Although occasionally you will get a copy of the bass track that has just been played or sampled or even layed down, and thats up to you to accent the bass notes with the bass drum!
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