Books are good things! I'd recommend half books and half everything/anything else.
I'm late to the party on this one, so I apologize if I say something that's already been said. Books are good, but playing and being creative is also good. Playing with others is even better.As a preface, I have been studying for most of my seven years on the drums with a variety of tools, but mainly using various books. I have worked my way up through the standards (Stick Control, Portraits in Rhythm) and am now focusing on some more complicated stuff like Gary Chester's The New Breed and John Riley's awesome bop books.
So, essentially I spend 70% of my practice time (1-4 hours per day) on books and the other 30% on things like creative soloing, playing along with tunes, etc.
This was all going well, until I went to clinics in Cleveland with Mr. Dave Weckl, who mentioned that books aren't always the best route. I would never argue with his expert opinion, but I was just a little confused. I guess my question is, if not books, then how else should I go about this?
I understand that there are infinite possibilities for what I can practice. But I feel that just aimlessly messing around without the guidance of books will lead me nowhere. Also, I hear stories of professionals practicing 6-8 hours a day. If they're not using books, how do they efficiently use their time?
Any tips would be awesome. I do take lessons and my big goal here is just to learn as much as possible and be the best I can. Thanks everyone.