Buddy Rich - Truly Incredible

Stitch Kaboodle

Senior Member
I recently transcribed a section of Buddy's playing from West Side Story in 1982. Buddy is in his later years but his playing is supreme.

Here's the video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ik2EhBU5XIo

There's the flawless sweeping from tom to snare and the rapid cross sticking, playing left hand under right - and double strokes too!!!

And here's the transcription in full: http://www.kevoshea.com/lessons.html

I have to say this was easily the most difficult transcription I have encountered yet. It might look simple enough but the poor video quality combined with the prodigious drumming talent made this one a chore!

There's enough in this short 10 second burst to study for a long, long time.

Stating the obvious here but what a player he was.

Always gave 100% too!!!
 

Seafroggys

Silver Member
Just flip the sticking backwards?

And holy shit this would be nice to learn. I could tap the tempo out myself, but do you recall what the tempo is on this?
 

opentune

Platinum Member
Truly awesome. Sorry but what is meant by "double stroke sweeps from tom to snare"? meaning first stroke of the double on tom, second on snare?
 

Seafroggys

Silver Member
Truly awesome. Sorry but what is meant by "double stroke sweeps from tom to snare"? meaning first stroke of the double on tom, second on snare?
Yeah, a sweep is a double (or triple) stroke where each stroke is on a different drum. Common in marching tenor music, but rare on drumset. Crazy to see that here!
 

Hummada

Senior Member
The guy took drumming to an unreachable level!

Did you transcribe it to learn the part and is this on the (buddy rich up close)video where all his parts are slowed down?

Thanks for sharing
 

Stitch Kaboodle

Senior Member
Just flip the sticking backwards?

And holy shit this would be nice to learn. I could tap the tempo out myself, but do you recall what the tempo is on this?
Just checked there and he's playing 1/4 notes around 230 BPM.


The guy took drumming to an unreachable level!

Did you transcribe it to learn the part and is this on the (buddy rich up close)video where all his parts are slowed down?

Thanks for sharing
I transcribed it initially because I hadn't done much Buddy stuff before. I never realised the complexity in this part of the West Side Story solo. I'll definitely be giving learning it a go!

A lot of these patterns look familiar to certain ones in Joe Morello's old book on kit drumming. Some of the tricks they were pulling off back then were pretty mind blowing, even by today's standards.

Great to hear everyone is getting as much out of it as I am.
 

Hummada

Senior Member
Man that's got to take some time to transcribe! I couldn't imagine trying to watch it at full speed and putting it on paper.

Do you ever notice that when you actually take the time to write out parts, you learn it faster? It works for me like that for any music I'm learning, but I don't write down everything I learn. It helps me in a couple ways. If it's something I'm having trouble with I'll write out the sticking and practice it slow... If I'm learning songs in an original band, I'll write out simple charts because it helps me memorize the songs easier.
 

drummer-russ

Gold Member
Man that's got to take some time to transcribe! I couldn't imagine trying to watch it at full speed and putting it on paper.

Do you ever notice that when you actually take the time to write out parts, you learn it faster? It works for me like that for any music I'm learning, but I don't write down everything I learn. It helps me in a couple ways. If it's something I'm having trouble with I'll write out the sticking and practice it slow... If I'm learning songs in an original band, I'll write out simple charts because it helps me memorize the songs easier.
I too write out the parts that I am having trouble with. I have to write out all of the fills in Whole Lotta Love to get them right. JB has a tendency to start fills at different counts.
 

Stitch Kaboodle

Senior Member
Man that's got to take some time to transcribe! I couldn't imagine trying to watch it at full speed and putting it on paper.

Do you ever notice that when you actually take the time to write out parts, you learn it faster? It works for me like that for any music I'm learning, but I don't write down everything I learn. It helps me in a couple ways. If it's something I'm having trouble with I'll write out the sticking and practice it slow... If I'm learning songs in an original band, I'll write out simple charts because it helps me memorize the songs easier.
It's great to take the mystery out of his playing a small bit. I don't think anyone could transcribe this at full speed. Even at 1/4 speed it was tough going.

I think maybe it's because the playing has such little repetition in it. There's very little to grab onto and this makes determining beat counts extremely difficult. Add to that Buddy's lightning sticking and you have a recipe for a migraine!
 

Hummada

Senior Member
He deserves a lot more credit than what he has accumulated to today. In my opinion, he was easily in the top ten best musicians born. I still haven't seen anyone come near the natural skill. As you can see in transcribing a little part of the solo, how/what in the hell??? Some of his parts, like when he was just driving a verse, are insanely complicated but looks easy and sounds perfect. I'm looking for another transcription that I saw a year ago done by another talented drummer. It was just buddy backing up the band, not showing off, and it was a combination of 16th/32 notes on the high hat/snare with layered bass drum part. The guy transcribed it and ran it through a drum machine???? Whatever it was, it just blew my mind. The guy actually learned the part but didn't sound like Buddy, which was extremely impressive to me. I'll try and find it soon.

There's a lot of drummers I absolutely love out there just as much as Buddy, but I believe every one of the masters that are alive today ....when they say he was unmatched.

Btw, I bookmarked your website because you have done a lot of very helpful work. Thanks
 

Seafroggys

Silver Member
So I played it tonight! Got it up to 140 bpm. A little shaky at that tempo but not bad! Its a lot of fun. Measures 5-6 get a little floaty but I always end up right on the click.

The slice is still easily doable at that tempo, but we'll see how hard it gets when I get it up faster.
 

Stitch Kaboodle

Senior Member
So I played it tonight! Got it up to 140 bpm. A little shaky at that tempo but not bad! Its a lot of fun. Measures 5-6 get a little floaty but I always end up right on the click.

The slice is still easily doable at that tempo, but we'll see how hard it gets when I get it up faster.

Great. You should post a video of your playing!

The sweeps are always easier if you set your drums up a bit closer. Notice how Buddy's front tom sits over his snare.
 

Seafroggys

Silver Member
Yeah, I got it up to 160, then recorded it, and found that I'm flubbing up Measure 7 like nobody's business. Doing those Bonham triplets with the bass drum on the downbeat is something I just haven't really done before, and its messing with my flow!

https://youtu.be/qQpeKgPQDxw
 

rain dog

Member
after many years of listening to him .. i know buddy rich was unique .. very unique and talented. i personally am not attracted to his style and find it a bit jerky and in your face .. but amazing. i am more into the flow and syncopated complex rhythms where his style was totally arrhythmic and unpredictable .. but also explosive similar to john bonham
 
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