how do you feel?

The Gedge

Member
Seems to me like you are thinking on the wrong track here. First of all, the boring drumming thing, it's all in your mind.
In your mind, boring = repetitive, right?

If you answered yes above...this is a known pitfall. The second you think your drumming is boring, you are just about to mess up your groove to stave off "boredom". This is just wrong, you are NEVER boring. Remove the word from you vocabulary. Repetition is essential to craft a groove. You are not a lead instrument so stop thinking like one. Learn to embrace "boring". It's not boring at all, your mistake is that you think it is. You are shooting your own foot.
I agree with Larry, right up to the point I actually start playing, which does kind of get annoying.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Thinking that you are boring is toxic to your playing. Music does not have to be complex to be good. In fact, usually, simple works better. It's more easily accessible to most. You could be able to play 64 clean notes a second, but if your audience can't keep up, you are playing over their heads, which, as high an ideal as that is, misses the mark. (The mark being to get you audience to enjoy your stuff) Not showing all your cards. letting some stuff go unplayed, is powerful stuff. When I first tried to play Beatles songs, my way, (I thought Ringo could have been more...something....) so I tried to play it my way...That's when I started to understand....

There's a thing about playing too many notes too...sometimes you just need to leave space. Some drummers think that the more notes they play, the better they are doing. Puh-lease. It takes a lot of security to leave space. Someone will take it and be thankful for it.

I am referring to vocal based music here aimed at civilians, not musicians. Obviously with prog instrumental based stuff, the sky is the limit.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
the way i meant this question was
the laymen who listen to your music
they would say guitars were good
drummer sucked or vice versa
in that context how would you feel
If people think you suck for holding things down and being the backbone, allowing your band mates to shine, then they are naive listeners. Them's the breaks - not everyone sees things the same way.

Mukund, I've been where you are at - I remember wanting to be a hotshot and practising Ian Paice licks on a loop in the 70s.

But the only opinions that matter when it comes to your drumming are those of the band - including you.

The only thing you should care about with the audience is whether they dig the band as a whole or not. If they dig you as a drummer, it's a bonus. Make people's ears and feet happy and they will love you, no matter how simple or complex you play.

Ultimately, Larry nailed it because like Yoda he is.
 

Drumolator

Platinum Member
I play in a blues band. There is little chance that the drum part will be more complicated than the guitar part. I love music and want whatever band I am in to sound good. So, I do what I have to do to make that happen, and everyone else in the band should too. I guess I have been very lucky and blessed that all of the bands I have been in have musicians that think that way. Peace, goodwill, and blues.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I get the feeling mukind is not sure of the role the drums play. You don't compare yourself to the guitarists. You don't compare yourself to anyone in the band for that matter. You each have a specific job to do, that is unique. Together, it all ties together, but you must know the role you play in the band. You are the pulse, the relentless beat. The leads weave in and out of the beat. They can't do that if the beat doesn't follow some logical pattern. It's vital to them that you mark the beat, so they can run all around the beat with their leads. They count on you to be somewhat predictable in a sense, so they can craft their lead to what they know should be coming. You are the beat. No one else is the beat. You are the beat. Beats shouldn't falter, no matter what.

If beats are constantly changing up so you won't be "boring", people can't settle in. You want to make people comfortable, not nervous. If you are thinking that you are boring, that means your mind is only on your drum part and not on the big picture and you are nervous and not in the right frame of mind to play from, ideally.

Don't be afraid to play simply, it's very freeing. And it almost always works. It's easy, and it works. Why does everyone think they have to work so hard? Amateur mindset IMO. Focus more on feeling than thinking. In fact stop thinking altogether and clear your mind, stifle your own internal chatter, and just listen to everyone else, and play from that headspace.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
I get the feeling mukind is not sure of the role the drums play. You don't compare yourself to the guitarists. You don't compare yourself to anyone in the band for that matter. You each have a specific job to do, that is unique. Together, it all ties together, but you must know the role you play in the band. You are the pulse, the relentless beat. The leads weave in and out of the beat. They can't do that if the beat doesn't follow some logical pattern. It's vital to them that you mark the beat, so they can run all around the beat with their leads. They count on you to be somewhat predictable in a sense, so they can craft their lead to what they know should be coming. You are the beat. No one else is the beat. You are the beat. Beats shouldn't falter, no matter what.
In metal that's not always the case. Often the drums take more of a lead role while the guitar stays at home - just like The Who.

However, if you can't nail ostinato grooves then there's no way you can play fancy stuff evenly. Only the most gifted can successfully run before they walk, although many players delude themselves into thinking that their sloppy flash is "successful" ... I know that one through experience.
 
D

DSCRAPRE

Guest
A story from my very limited personal experience.

Awhile back a singer-songwriter that I know asked me if I wanted to lay some drum tracks for an Demo/EP he is doing. I've always thought that he was a brilliant musician and a generally great guy so I was really excited to get to work with him. He said that he had two songs written and had a sort of idea of how the third one would sound but he really didn't know the exact direction of it.

A few days later we got together to jam a bit and during that time we started talking about music and stuff. That's when I said how inferior I feel to the actual musicians like him that I've played with "because they're over there playing these unique progressions and solos, and I'm sitting here doing this." and then I started playing the "Billie Jean" Groove. So I'm sitting there playing this and suddenly he readies his guitar and starts playing this groovy part. He goes through this whole progression and I'm just sitting there grooving. After about three minutes of just absolutely firey jamming he stops and says to me something along the lines of "you just wrote that third song for me". I played one transitional fill at the end of his progression and just held the beat the rest of the time.

Simple isn't boring.
 
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Dr_Watso

Platinum Member
In metal that's not always the case. Often the drums take more of a lead role while the guitar stays at home - just like The Who.
Personally, I don't think it's just metal. Everyone in the band has a "job to do". The job is to make music that gets the tingle feeling going up your spine. Setting a bunch of rules about who has what job going into it just always seemed a bit limiting. Between the band's various instruments and associated sounds, there's a lot of different possibilities for who is going to fill what role at any given moment. Any sound can be "lead" any band member can be "rhythm" and I think "weaving around into the foundation" of a song should be done by everyone. In my view, music is best when the concept of call and response is subtly used by all band members in response to the feel of the music. Jazz, though it's not my favorite genre is a love of mine, and a lot of that stems from the fact that it gets so off the beaten western 'rock' music path, and tends not to follow the same rules.

Of course, at the same time, in a lot of cases, holding super steady and being the song's rock with a lot of predictability is exactly what the situation calls for. Much of the music out there for consumption is written in this manner, and it's certainly a successful formula.

I suppose having a problem with rules has always been a trait of mine. Never did like em.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Personally, I don't think it's just metal. Everyone in the band has a "job to do". The job is to make music that gets the tingle feeling going up your spine. Setting a bunch of rules about who has what job going into it just always seemed a bit limiting. Between the band's various instruments and associated sounds, there's a lot of different possibilities for who is going to fill what role at any given moment. Any sound can be "lead" any band member can be "rhythm" and I think "weaving around into the foundation" of a song should be done by everyone. In my view, music is best when the concept of call and response is subtly used by all band members in response to the feel of the music. Jazz, though it's not my favorite genre is a love of mine, and a lot of that stems from the fact that it gets so off the beaten western 'rock' music path, and tends not to follow the same rules.

Of course, at the same time, in a lot of cases, holding super steady and being the song's rock with a lot of predictability is exactly what the situation calls for. Much of the music out there for consumption is written in this manner, and it's certainly a successful formula.

I suppose having a problem with rules has always been a trait of mine. Never did like em.
Great post, Watso.

Based on Larry's videos, he has no problem stepping up when required.

I think he talks down the big plays for the benefit of young drummers who he knows are making the same mistakes as he did when he was at their stage. It's good that you qualify because newbs should be less caught up with formulas are more focused on the flow of the music.

It's simple, really. As a listener we all know that the way a song flows from part to part to make a little journey is what it's all about. Yet you hear bands that don't listen so well and there's all these small malfunctions that jar and turn the journey into something that doesn't quite make sense as a musical statement.

It doesn't help if people go off on abstract flights of fancy (lick #12) when a more lyrical musical statement could be made by working with the notes around you. At the same time, there are times when the drums need to step up to create musical highs.
 
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