My new DRUM! article

whiteknightx

Silver Member
Thumbs up Bermuda, good article!

I usually consider the "I play it my way" drummer or musician as someone too lazy to learn a style. They've got their lick, and that's their lick, and it's what you're gonna get on every song.
If a player isn't interested in learning different styles, challenging grooves and new vocabulary, why are they there? I just don't get it. Besides, if I get an occasional compliment on a gig, it's probably because I captured the original artist's style. I recall a recent compliment along the lines of "you played Suit & Tie better than our usual drummer", and I thought hey it's just what they did on the record. What the heck is the other guy playing?
So true. Most of my life I've played in bands where we get the "intent" of a song, and try to pick up the major elements, and call it a day. I always felt like that was just fine. My last couple bands I've been in, we really work hard to try to get the song 99% to the record. It's been a real challenge, but now that I've become used to taking things to that level, it's pretty fun.

I've also noticed that when I fill in with other players,now that I've put the work in and try to play it to the record, I've gotten that compliment quite a bit - "you play that much better than our drummer does." It's been a real eye opener for me.

Making it your own really should apply if the band is all working together to change the song. One or two guys is just screwing it up, not making it their own.
 

Spreggy

Silver Member
Thumbs up Bermuda, good article!

I usually consider the "I play it my way" drummer or musician as someone too lazy to learn a style. They've got their lick, and that's their lick, and it's what you're gonna get on every song.
If a player isn't interested in learning different styles, challenging grooves and new vocabulary, why are they there? I just don't get it. Besides, if I get an occasional compliment on a gig, it's probably because I captured the original artist's style. I recall a recent compliment along the lines of "you played Suit & Tie better than our usual drummer", and I thought hey it's just what they did on the record. What the heck is the other guy playing?
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Very cool article Bermuda. ... There is a lot to be learned by learning another drummer's vocabulary and it can really help drummers to develop their own sound.
Thank you!

Regarding learning what other drummers do, I've always felt that if a part worked once, it will work twice. Or three times. Or for a lifetime. I've got a large vocabulary based on parts that are tried & true, and while I'm not known for having my own sound (necessarily), I'm known for playing parts that sound right. That's primarily why I have a career playing drums, and I make no apologies for that. :)

Bermuda
 

TripleStroke

Senior Member
Respect to the article and hi Jared the drumeo guy. U were the reason why i started working so hard on rudiments again! Props to both gentlemen
 

mmulcahy1

Platinum Member
Jared, man you got to stop posting so much stuff. I mean, 39 posts in 11 years... I don't think I have time to ever read everything!!

;-)
 

Jared_Falk

Member
Very cool article Bermuda. This was my favorite quote from the write-up,

"And before anyone retorts, “If the audience wants to hear the original, let them play the jukebox,” be careful what you wish for. Take the paying gig, play the parts, and be thankful the club owner doesn’t consider your advice."

I've always struggled with this as I see value in both ways, creating my own parts and staying true to the original. Most bands I've worked with prefer that the drummer just plays the original parts - and people listening or dancing also prefer the same.

There is a lot to be learned by learning another drummer's vocabulary and it can really help drummers to develop their own sound.
 

lefty2

Platinum Member
That was short and sweet. I agree totally. I've played in a few original bands, but lately I've been playing in a mostly cover band. I always try to learn the song as close as I can to the original. My bands that I've been a part of in recent yrs. think I'm a great drummer. (I don't think so) I'm just trying to mimic what I hear on the original recording. Quite often I can't really play what the original drummer is playing, so I play something that I can pull off that sounds similar. Stick to the original, that's what the people want to hear. They may not know the drum parts but they can tell the song isn't right. Nice article, with good info that makes sense. It's great that your ideas and drum knowledge get published. Congrats.
 

DrumWild

Senior Member
Excellent article and advice, Bermuda.

It reminds me of an audition that I had years ago for a novelty band that was being put together by a big-name drummer, who was going to be the owner of the project. I'll be leaving his name out, because this story is not flattering.

He said that for the audition I needed to learn "Last Dance with Mary Jane" by Tom Petty. Even if you haven't heard that song in a while, you might remember it as not being all that heavy on the drums.

I'm there for my big moment, playing the song as I learned it from the recording, but with a bit of presence. Before we get to the chorus, this guy calls it and tells everyone to stop. Then he comes over and says those dreaded words.

"Give me those sticks!"

The band starts up again, and he's beating those drums hard. The song is nearly unrecognizable, but he's rather proud of himself. He tells the band to go take a break, and before he throws me out, he hands me a "word of advice" about playing covers.

"NEVER play it like the record. That's g*y." Then, he and his posse turned and walked out of the room, as if they'd shown a loser who's boss.

At the time, I was in shock, not only because I was surprised that this was what he wanted, but also because he never TOLD me what he wanted. He just assumed it, and when I didn't do it, somehow I was wrong.

After the shock wore off, I was glad that I didn't get the gig.

I'll take Bermuda's words of wisdom over THAT guy's assertions any day of the week.
 
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GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Being concise is the hallmark of good communication. You don't want a thesis and a tweet just isn't enough-great job. I agree with your posit many popular songs have catch drum phrasing that is a hallmark of the song-you hear the drum part and know the song immediately. I don't mind people mashing it up a bit-but sometimes they smash it to unrecognizable bits and that isn't a drum cover but a whole new song.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
DRUM mag has an iconic American grammy winning drummer writing articles for them? They should be so lucky.

The art (of the writing) is to remain subjective, it should be interesting too. Good job Bermuda.
Thanks! The articles began for me because I was already here discussing the kind of topics they want to feature for their readers. The hard part is trying to cover these topics completely in less than 400 words.

I used to view DRUM! as more of a flavor-of-the-month approach that appealed more to younger drummers. It has evolved nicely into a more informative, well-rounded magazine with some excellent input from pros, educators, and industry folk. I'm in good company.

This is my 4th published article in almost a year, and so far the responses have been positive. My next 2 articles are on auditions, and day jobs, and I have 19 additional topics in the funnel. :)

Bermuda
 

Les Ismore

Platinum Member
DRUM mag has an iconic American grammy winning drummer writing articles for them? They should be so lucky.

The art (of the writing) is to remain subjective, it should be interesting too. Good job Bermuda.
 
J

JohnoWorld

Guest
Cheers Bermuda

I'm guessing you only have 1 photo of yourself playing drums :)
 

drummer-russ

Gold Member
Deja vu! I agree with your position. For me sometimes that means it takes a little longer for me to nail the song. Just started playing Have a Cigar. the rest of the band was not concerned with the 5/4 bars but I wanted to do them right. Once I did on the second rehearsal they all appreciated the accuracy.
 

double_G

Silver Member
Great points / article. No one talks about this. "And don’t worry. Nobody will ever say, “How come you can’t make the song your own?” Just be prepared for the onslaught of compliments you get for playing the right parts." YUP. no one ever told me to play "Rosanna" with anything besides the JP album version. Huzzah.
 

mmulcahy1

Platinum Member
Not much I haven't also discussed here, except it's mercifully short at under 400 words. :)

Enjoy!

Bermuda
I agree, Bermuda - you've written these sentiments here on DW many times... and in much, much longer form than in the magazine!
;-)
 
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