DRUM INSTRUCTION DVD & BOOK REVIEWS

ageadm

Senior Member
NAME:
Derek Roddy's - Blast Beats Evolved

STAR RATING:
# # # # #

WORDED RATING:
Awesome instructional DVD and very informative.

TARGET AUDIENCE:
Not for complete beginners, you might need some experience.

PUBLISHED BY:
Hudson Music

DESCRIPTION:
I recommend this DVD to people who like to become metal drummers in the future. It explains everything regarding to Blast beats (types, variations etc.), Skank beats, accenting blast beats, metal fills, building speed and endurance etc. There are lots of play alongs in the DVD, so you can see how you can play along to the tracks in the CD. Derek also plays lots of solos, they will surely spice up your drumming with some creative ideas. Awesome DVD!
 

Arky

Platinum Member
NAME:
The Black Book - An Introduction To Creative Metal Drumming, by Randy Black. 2-DVD set. Total running time: 3 hrs. 25 min.

STAR RATING:
# # # # (4.5 stars)

WORDED RATING:
Great tutorial on how to apply rudiments on the drums in a metal context with a lot of tips & fills. Rounded up by a documentary on Randy's drumming career, an interview, performances, various slo-mo parts.

TARGET AUDIENCE:
Basically any level (although hard for beginners), to advanced. Pretty much any drummer could get fresh ideas and inspirations from this DVD.

PUBLISHED BY:
Hudson Limited (2009)

DESCRIPTION:

Initially Randy wanted to record a few songs in pro quality for promotional purposes but in the process this fully-fledged 2-DVD set came out as a result.

Disc 1:
* Exercises/Tricks/Gear (the gear section isn't up to date as Randy has switched from Mapex to Pearl drums/pedals/hardware and changed some of his (Sabian) cymbals)
* 3 Solos (+ slo-mo parts)

Disc 1 includes (as reads on the back cover):
- Basic Rudiments on the Practice Pad
- Advice to young drummers
- Hand grip & technique
- Stretching & stick tricks
- Applying arious rudiments on the kit
- Hi-hat foot technique
- Independence exercises/moving accents
- Various fills & rhythms from Randy's recordings
- Crossovers
- Applying different styles to metal music
- Tools of the trade
- 3 solos - pad/studio/live

Disc 2:
* Documentary/Interview (on past and present band activities)
* Drum performance of 7 songs (+ slo-mo parts)
Those songs have been selected for interesting drum parts to be broken down for learning purposes and are very different (within a hard rock/heavy metal context).

Disc 2 includes (as reads on the back cover):
- Documentary/interview
- Drum performance of 7 songs:
- Seven Seals/Primal Fear
- Hit You Harder/Skew Siskin
- Blood On Your Hands/Primal Fear
- Heart Of A Brave/Primal Fear
- Blackened Beauty/Marcus Forstbauer
- A Promise From Underneath/DuskMachine
- Cold Blooded/Annihilator (cover version)

This tutorial comes with a 10-page booklet (no notes/transcriptions). The overall artwork/design of the cover, DVDs and booklet has a very professional look and is very pleasing to the eye. The sound quality is superb, Randy underlines that there was no movement or quantizing of his playing after the recording was done.

Randy is also a drum teacher, this really shows in the way he's explaining things and demonstrating stuff. He has a powerful playing style which takes - but also provides - quite some energy. He's using a mostly symmetrical drum setup and open-handed playing a lot. A great deal of his patterns are symmetrical.

The basic rudiments section starts off with briefly explaining the origin of traditional grip. The grip Andy is using is matched grip. The rudiments section covers the essentials & more for metal context.

What might be considered a weakness of this tutorial is that Randy doesn't cover double bass technique/runs in detail and/or doesn't provide e.g. broken bass drum patterns (except for those used in a fill/hands & feet context). His bass drum playing is mostly either 'regular' patterns or switching to 8th/16th notes. His footwork fits the demonstrated contexts/ideas perfectly though and doesn't leave anything to be desired sonically, just be aware that it's not a hardcore tutorial on foot/bass drum technique explicitly.

Here's a YouTube promo clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UeBMlOIoWVM
 

drummindan8484

Senior Member
NAME:
Aquiles Priester- The Infallible Reason For My Freak Drumming

STAR RATING:
#####

WORDED RATING:
Excellent insight into the mind of one of today's premier metal drummers, full of great performances and exercises.

TARGET AUDIENCE:
Intermediate to advanced

PUBLISHED BY:
Mel Bay

DESCRIPTION:

The primary feature of this DVD is Aquiles performing a set of songs from his bands Hangar and Freakeys along with 2 drum solos and a cover of Death's "Symbolic". The DVD also includes 2 lesson segments. The first is mostly at a practice pad, where Aquiles demonstrates his slightly unconventional yet highly practical hand technique through a series of exercises-most of which are based around paradiddles. The 2nd lesson is on double bass technique. Aquiles runs through a series of exercises for making both feet even, demonstrates his favorite double bass grooves and discusses his pedal settings. Also included is a rundown of his gear and an in depth interview, which I can not critique because I haven't watched it yet. The instructional segments are great exercises for any drummer, not just metal drummers. Aquiles is very clear in his explanations of everything and does not do anything simply for the sake of showing off. The performances really showcase Aquiles' speed, precision, independence, creativity and musicality. The music that he performs is much more accessible to a non metal fan than the music featured on most metal drumming DVDs, so I would recommend this to anyone who's not even normally a fan of metal drumming. One major word of caution: English is not Aquiles' first language, so unless you are a fluent Spanish speaker, make sure you turn on the subtitles before watching.
 

willribeiroct

Junior Member
NAME:

“Stick Technique” by Jim McCarthy

STAR RATING:

# # # #

WORDED RATING:

An in-depth analysis on proper gripping of the drumsticks for mastery of your kit, with increased hand speed and efficiency of movement

TARGET AUDIENCE:

Beginner to advanced – good for the beginner so they can start off practicing correctly for fast gains in speed, and for advanced to review current playing and to adjust accordingly, if necessary; a great reference

PUBLISHED BY:

StickTechnique.com

DESCRIPTION:

“Stick Technique” is an e-book that explains in great detail how to properly hold your sticks in a way that will dramatically improve your speed, on the snare and all around the kit. In it you'll find in-depth discussions regarding the fulcrum, traditional vs. matched grip, the importance of dynamics, understanding pivot points, rudiment essentials, and so much more. Very well illustrated with diagrams and pictures – a fantastic reference. For an in-depth review at TheParadiddler.com, click here.
Cool bro, looking forward to buy this book.
 

Arky

Platinum Member
I want to get an instructional book, and I am looking at "The Black Book" by Randy Black. but I am not sure if it is a book or just DVDs. Is it better to learn from a book than DVDs? Are DVDs dependable for studying? I personally like reading exercises written in notation but I am not sure how well DVDs can teach me. anyone here work well with DVDs?

http://www.hudsonmusic.com/hudson/products/the-black-book-creative-metal-drumming/
Donovan,
I've reviewed that tutorial in this thread - see post #343.
DVDs vs. books - there's pros and cons to both forms. I think a combination of both is great - not meaning that you have to have the same tutorial both as DVD and book/PDF although this is an extremely nice package which does exist on the market. Recently some tutorials have been accompanied by the book version with the DVD published first (e.g. Todd Sucherman's 1st DVD, Benny Greb... and some more I'm not aware of).

Here's some feedback on Randy Black's tutorial:
http://www.randyblack.de/dvd_pop.html

Personally I have a lot of benefit from DVDs. They also get a lot of motivation across by just _watching_ those phenomenal drummers play or merely admiring their technique etc.
 

Oliver Zisko

Junior Member

Oliver Zisko

Junior Member
TITLE: 100% Drumming
AUTHOR: Oliver Zisko
PUBLISHER: Own
RATING: ..........
PLAYING TIME: 2 hours
COMMENTS: First of all I would like to inroduce myself. Oliver Zisko, from Hungary/Europe. I want to make a short review of my drum educational DVD.

Unfortunately this issue is not a well known one. The trailer of the film has only about 2.500 watching on youtube. It was came out in 2009 and published only in my local area.
For this I think noone of the readers has a copy of it and can make a review, so I must to do it by myself :).

It contains 19 drum solos and 6 videoclips.
In short details it contains drum tips for modern drummers (useful tips for fusion ,jazz-rock, progressive rock, prog metal drummers). Hand and foot development exercises, warm up exercises, improvisational models, horizontal and vertical playing, rudimental solos, fast playing using moeller strokes with feet and hands, double bass double stroke rolls, polymetric playing. Contains full songs in videoclips where I tried to show how each technical ideas work in music. Hope you're interested and watch the trailer:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JY744srCMVY&list=UUCPUzuZR34gvsnlSCfFIdpQ&index=19
 

FAZ

Member
TITLE: The Drum Master Key
AUTHOR: Florian Alexandru-zorn
PUBLISHER: Alfred Music
RATING: ..........
the Volume is published worldwide and comes both in a german and english version


COMMENTS:
A Compact Guide to Complete Musical Manifestation

This volume is the distillation of all studies I have undertaken up to the present day. I practice these concepts in intricate detail on a regular basis. It has taken me several years to complete the process of writing this book and I am now looking forward to being able to share these practice techniques and concepts with others.
The Drum Master Key can be utilized within a wide range of styles and is therefore timeless. I consider it essential not to limit the focus to a single genre or playing technique.

Each new ‘vocabulary’ enriches our own individual mode of expression and simplifies conversation with fellow musicians. We percussionists occupy a special role in music; our primary focus is on rhythm and phrasing and we devote our concentration to these two areas to a substantially greater degree than most other instrumentalists. For this reason, I consider it essential to practice exercises not only within binary and ternary fields, but also to incorporate quintuplets, septuplets etc. into our daily vocabulary. This knowledge and the associated “thinking outside the box” will reinforce our playing technique and permit us to become more open-minded for new paths.

Each chapter of this book opens a further door to a wide range of musical dimensions. Beginning with fundamental rhythms and dynamics and proceeding to polymeters, displacements and daily workouts, I have attempted to compile all essential elements for independent practice. I find it fascinating to observe how each individual percussionist has a different sound although we are all united by a single factor: the rhythmic foundation on which all our playing is based. This master key has been conceived for all percussionists who are individually free to decide how this material can be best employed to enhance their own personal style.

Children provide us with a good example.
They enjoy playing with building blocks and, depending on their whim of the day, produce the most amazing variety of constructions: towers, castles, dragons or diggers. Some times they simply build whatever comes into their head.
All utilize the same starting material, but produce different results every time.
If you have a precise vision of what you want to play, you will succeed in combining all these building blocks differently every time with the aid of this book, thereby extending your abilities and learning how to employ them flexibly.
If you do not have a clear picture of what you want to play, I advise you to work systematically through the concepts towards the point at which the previously fuzzy image will gradually come into focus and reveal its clarity.
Now enjoy this musical voyage of discovery!

It is not important to proceed through this volume in chronological order.
Each chapter is devoted to self-contained work fields which are imperative for all percussionists. A solid foundation always is the ideal basis for a stable learning process: this is provided in the first chapter "The Key to Time".
The other chapters can however be worked through in any order. It is in fact advisable to jump back and forth between the different chapters to gain new insights into the individual exercises.
Where possible, the concepts in this book are deliberately reproduced in tabular form. This means that the individual parts have to be assembled mentally which will in turn ensure that the material is memorized better and you will be quicker in developing the ability to retrieve this material at any time.
Progress through the exercises one by one and attempt to play through each section until you are even able to continue playing if your attention starts to wander.

According to new scientific studies (status 2012), the human brain requires around 160 repeated attempts to memorize something permanently. Here this will take around 15-20 minutes at approx. 100 bpm per 4/4 bar.
The principle of repetition is however only one aspect of reinforcing something which has recently been learned. I attach even greater significance to the question of how the acquired knowledge is to be used. It is therefore first necessary to know how to go about learning something, but equally important to recognize the purpose of learning.
Here is a concrete example:
Can you remember back to your first day at school or the route you took during your driving test?
Older persons are able to recall situations, emotions and scents which sometimes go back several decades: how is this possible?
The solution is extremely simple: the intensity of a particular situation. This is not merely dependent on repetition, but also on the individual attitude and associated degree of motivation with which exercises are performed. It is therefore necessary first to recognize why something has to be practiced as this will make actual practice significantly easier. My guiding principle is that I feel privileged as a musician simply by being able to “play”.

To get an impression I have produced this little video today. I really hope you enjoy it!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a5TT3fZ-8Zc
 

JohnW

Silver Member
TITLE: The Drum Master Key
AUTHOR: Florian Alexandru-zorn
I like the concept behind it. And if the quality of this book is even remotely as good as your DVD, "the Brush Secret", it's worth getting. I look forward to getting a copy.

-John
 

Arky

Platinum Member
Here's my review of
"The Drum Master Key“ by Florian Alexandru-Zorn
(book, 50+ pages, approx. 15 Euros)

Florian Alexandru-Zorn is the author of several books (on brush playing, jazz standards and drums on famous music scores) and also published his superb DVD „The Brush Secret“ (actually a 2-DVD set) in 2012. „The Drum Master Key“ is his newest book.

When I tried to order the book I was told it’s not available yet so I addressed the author himself (the book hadn't hit German/European stores at that time yet but Florian had a few promotional copies at his disposal), and Florian was so kind as to send me one copy for free – how cool is that! For a minor return service though – he asked me to write a review, and here it is ;-)

At first I was surprised by the book having a mere 50+ pages. But then I realized that the book is designed to provide concepts, not specific exercises. The book contains handful of exercises though, as examples of how those concepts can be applied. There’s just a couple chapters.

The 1st chapter is „The Key To Time“ (including the ‚Pyramid Stickings‘ concept – which in itself is a kind of Stick Control in mini format as that pyramid system of stickings allows for a huge number of combinations, and when written out, those would produce several pages of Stick Control). The time pyramid also contains groups of 5 and 7 to fill up the typically used subdivisions from quarter notes to 32nd notes. Applying various stickings to those subdivisions creates an abundance of possible combinations.

The 2nd chapter, „The Master Key“ explains the concept of various aspects like timing, sticking, accent studies etc. adding up removing anything that could limit one’s playing. This chapter also applies the various subdivisions to stickings and accent patterns so again, numerous combinations are created. There’s also some examples of how those concepts can be applied in a groove context. The patterns themselves can be played on the same drum or across various drums, using hands and/or feet etc – the user is encouraged to take this approach and come up with his own way of applying them to the drumkit.

The 3rd chapter discusses accented note groups (of 3, 5 and 7) applied to various subdivisions including the 5 and 7 rhythms, polyrhythm/polymetrics and also a few blank pages (read on).

I already encountered some of the concepts in the online lessons that Florian is offering (I’ve been a member for a few months now), and I clearly see the huge potential of those concepts as they can be applied to so many situations. E.g. when working on some rudiments, those can be played in unusual subdivisions or with different accents, enormously varying up one’s practice and creating quite some challenge.

Finally there’s a section on polyrhythms/polymetrics (a total of 10 patterns) plus a few blank pages for the user to determine how to assign the accented vs. unaccented beats within a pattern to specific drum elements. So many (rather: endless) possibilities.

Ultimately this is not the typical xy amount of exercises book, everything is based on concepts. Applying those concepts calls for creativity so everybody would get various results out of this book. I like the versatile concepts discussed a lot but frankly, I haven’t fully gotten accustomed to those concepts yet. That’s because my other drum books usually focus on providing specific examples – which is great but a somewhat different approach.

Check this book out if you have a chance. I can recommend it but the sheer number of variations takes a serious amount of independent learning/applying which is rather different from many other tutorials. It takes some time to experiment with those concepts but the benefit will be deep.
 

Torkerz

Senior Member
Probably on of the best books I've used is Groove Perspectives by Darryn Farrugia.

Amazing book and great if you want to work on dynamics and grooves!

http://store.drumtek.com.au/groove-perspectives-darryn-farrugia-ultimate-pack-2-books-2-cds/

The book's now sold in a double pack with the play along, but Darryn is an awesome player. Had the honor of being taught by him when I was studying in London! He's also on TUDW10 with his band 'Logic'

Check it out
 
B

britchops

Guest
Hi all

Are ebooks allowed in this thread? I've written a beginner course PDF ebook, but if that's for other threads I'll include it there. Don't want to offend...

TJ
 

Dave_Major

Silver Member
Hudson - Spanky McCurdy - Off Time/On Time

NAME:
George 'Spanky' McCurdy - Off Time/On Time

STAR RATING:
##

WORDED RATING:
Nicely produced but ultimately covers topics that are covered more completely in other books. A DVD that didn't need to be made.

TARGET AUDIENCE:
Intermediate - Funk/Gospel players

PUBLISHED BY:

Hudson Music

DESCRIPTION:
The DVD aims to cover the idea of playing with the illusion of being off time but still remaining in time.
It is the usual high quality Hudson production and sounds good (Spanky has some interesting choice in cardigans) but is ultimately let down because all the topics covered are covered in other material in a much more details and thought through manner.

In a similar way to the Aaron Spears DVD, Spanky knows what he plays but can;t communicate that effectively enough. His playing doesn't grab me like Aarons does and as such the DVD isn't massively entertaining either.

As i could workout 'Off time' to spanky means either displacing the beat by whole quarter notes or a combination of polyrhythms and syncopated phrases in the hats and or snare which are then mirrored in the kick.

If these topics are something that interest you i would check out the Gavin Harrison books and dvds and also possibly some stuff by Pete Magadini or Thomas Lang.

Spanky isn't a bad player, he has to be good to play for Lady Gaga, but like lots of dvds and books out there...it didn't need to be made.

D
 

Jackohan

Junior Member
Re: Hudson - Spanky McCurdy - Off Time/On Time

NAME:
George 'Spanky' McCurdy - Off Time/On Time

STAR RATING:
##

WORDED RATING:
Nicely produced but ultimately covers topics that are covered more completely in other books. A DVD that didn't need to be made.

TARGET AUDIENCE:
Intermediate - Funk/Gospel players

PUBLISHED BY:

Hudson Music

DESCRIPTION:
The DVD aims to cover the idea of playing with the illusion of being off time but still remaining in time.
It is the usual high quality Hudson production and sounds good (Spanky has some interesting choice in cardigans) but is ultimately let down because all the topics covered are covered in other material in a much more details and thought through manner.

In a similar way to the Aaron Spears DVD, Spanky knows what he plays but can;t communicate that effectively enough. His playing doesn't grab me like Aarons does and as such the DVD isn't massively entertaining either.

As i could workout 'Off time' to spanky means either displacing the beat by whole quarter notes or a combination of polyrhythms and syncopated phrases in the hats and or snare which are then mirrored in the kick.

If these topics are something that interest you i would check out the Gavin Harrison books and dvds and also possibly some stuff by Pete Magadini or Thomas Lang.

Spanky isn't a bad player, he has to be good to play for Lady Gaga, but like lots of dvds and books out there...it didn't need to be made.

D
Hi Dave! I'm trying to expand my book collection. Do you have a specific book by Gavin Harrison that you would recommend?
 
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