Some help with Nicko McBrain fills and licks?

just watched the trooper. my friend, this is an excellent video. thank you. ill watch them all. if i have some questions i might ask. thank you! you have a great cover band!!!!! cheers
 

GregAlsing

Junior Member
You may have gotten all of your answers but if you (or others) have not check this drum cam video I made earlier this month of the Trooper. It is on a fully reproduced Piece of Mind tour Sonor Phonic Plus kit with all the Paiste goodies in the original configuration.

I play in a Iron Maiden tribute band in Denver Colorado and we are doing gigs 1-2 a month locally. The material covers almost all maiden songs up until 7th son. If you want a second opinion on something I may be able to help.

http://youtu.be/uildnX4BeMc
 

kyle

Senior Member
you're correct. Its not a herta. Its a five stroke roll on the rack toms with the fifth hit being done on the bass drum.
 
"The first break of 2 min..."

You mean after the intro? A start time would be more helpful. But I have a feeling what you're calling 5-stroke rolls are actually hertas.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPbqQOf41Qc
0.08 second. the first break on the intro. cant realise what it is exactly. actually i havent really gotten used to the sound of herta that fast. will start practicing tomorrow the herta of course. so if it isnt 5 stroke roll as i stupidly said, it is actually a herta followed by a kick and then a flam? am i more correct now?

anyway my dear friend you cant imagine what good you did to me by showing me the herta... thank you so much. really. just a single rudiment, made such a huge change. thank you so much
 

drumdevil9

Platinum Member
"The first break of 2 min..."

You mean after the intro? A start time would be more helpful. But I have a feeling what you're calling 5-stroke rolls are actually hertas.
 
drumdevil also known as " my friend the life saver"
just listened to the infinite dreams part you mentioned, and also read the definition of hertas. well its what i was doing many times on my snare, but with double strokes. it was common knowledge for me that if for example i have to play a 8th note triplet, i double one of the 8th notes with a double stroke to make it more fancy. or if the doubled not is on the start,its actually a ruff (but with single strokes, which also i guess works better on toms). so, having said that, i am now pretty confident that his 5 stroke rolls are all single strokes. but you asked an example what i thought was a 5 stroke roll. so.. (perhaps i am mistaken of course)
the first break of 2 minutes to midnight. i think it is a kick followed by a 5 stroke roll but the fifth note also coincides with a kick.
at least thats what i think he plays and how i try to approximate his sound. perhaps i am mistaken... if so, id be obliged if you corrected me my friend
by the way, i m learning wasted years and some parts gave me hell. i nailed the intro, and the chorus fine, but in the verse where he starts these crazy breaks on the beat, he messes with my head. i just listened to wasted years drums only video in youtube, and all of that was herta. bloody hell. just way fast... so thank you so much. i think this was the secret ingredient that i was missing
and btw you people are right. listening to the drum tracks only, reveals all this little tasteful things that make nicko such an amazing drummer. for me he is the best one footed metal drummer by far

ps. btw is it just me or a herta, being played that fast sounds like a triplet with the first note being a flam?


Give me a specific example of where you're hearing a five-stroke roll. I'll give you my best guess.

For the hertas, listen to the fill at 4:25 in "Infinite Dreams". A great example of how he embellishes triplet fills with hertas.

You may already be playing these without knowing they had a name. I played them for decades before I knew what they were called.
 

drumdevil9

Platinum Member
Give me a specific example of where you're hearing a five-stroke roll. I'll give you my best guess.

For the hertas, listen to the fill at 4:25 in "Infinite Dreams". A great example of how he embellishes triplet fills with hertas.

You may already be playing these without knowing they had a name. I played them for decades before I knew what they were called.
 
It's definitely two kick hits, not three. Listen to "The Evil That Men Do" as a great example. Nicko's fills tend to be lots of hertas in triplet feel, flams and lots of "drops" (RLRK) as triplets like Bonham did. Does that a lot on "Piece of Mind". Listen to "The Trooper", "Sun And Steel" etc to get an idea.

Nicko is one of my heroes.
thank you so much my friend. i should try and play fast the rlrk pattern so that i understand how it sounds and then see where it fits. thank you for clarifying the "gallop" that he does it with 2 kicks. with a double pedal, i can do it with 3 kicks of course, but it is blasphemy, maiden and double pedal.
now all i need to do is check what a herta is. ill go to youtube right away. thank you my friends
btw dear drumdevil or anyone, if someone can confirm if nicko does the 5 stroke rolls with single strokes or double strokes, would help me a lot. thank you again
 

drumdevil9

Platinum Member
It's definitely two kick hits, not three. Listen to "The Evil That Men Do" as a great example. Nicko's fills tend to be lots of hertas in triplet feel, flams and lots of "drops" (RLRK) as triplets like Bonham did. Does that a lot on "Piece of Mind". Listen to "The Trooper", "Sun And Steel" etc to get an idea.

Nicko is one of my heroes.
 
If he's not, then why concern yourself with trying to do anything else in the first place? Learn it as he plays it and no-one would ever expect you to do anymore.....not even the most ardent of Maiden cover bands.
sorry you misunderstood me my friend. i know nicko plays 2 kicks instead of three. so thats why i asked you why you call it a gallop. because perhaps i am either mistaken or there is some song of maiden i haven't played yet that had fast galloping with one foot.
anyway, thank you very much for your answers in the thread dear friend
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member
yes but does nicko play all the kicks in the gallop. in trooper for example, i can only hear the 2. on the and and the a. could be wrong though.. thank you!
If he's not, then why concern yourself with trying to do anything else in the first place? Learn it as he plays it and no-one would ever expect you to do anymore.....not even the most ardent of Maiden cover bands.
 
thank you very much my friend. actually, all songs i have tried playing from iron maiden so far (they arent that many though), i have no problems with the beats. my right foot is fast enough i believe and my slide for doing the double kicks is very fine i guess (of course it can get better). my main problem would to be to be able to do all those super fast breaks without even thinking and making them work. my aim isnt to immitate nicko of course but for my breaks to sound like iron maiden breaks. meaning, i play 2 minutes 2 midnight alright id say, but becaus \e the breaks i play right now, are all mine, the song looses some of its magic compared to how nicko transforms the song with his own. in general my rudiments arent slow. they are quite fast id say, but make me play them in maiden song and all hell will break loose... the 5 stroke roll bothers me a bit. while i can play 5 stroke rolls super fast in my snare, with double strokes, make me play them on toms, and they dont sound so good. and when i play then on toms with single strokes, they just dont sound so ironmaiden like, if you know what i mean? nicko does the 5 stroke rolls with double strokes i guess?

ahh and my final question because you mentioned it. galloping with one foot? is that possible?
for me gallop would mean playing 3 kicks, in the 1, + and a (and so on) of every quarter note. but with one foot, i cant seem to think it is achievable. i use some sort of it (but i wouldnt call it galloping) in trooper and of course in caught somewhere in time, but what i do there , is simply noty play the kick on the one, just the other 2 kicks. is this still considered a gallop?
thank you so much!! perhaps i should see the rhythm of the beast dvd right now!!! cheers and thanx. up the irons
 

drumhedd

Senior Member
Nicko's playing is very hard to emulate, especially when you hear all the subtleties and ghost notes he's playing on those "drums-only" tracks! However, Nicko's "bag of tricks" when it comes to Maiden songs really isn't that large. The more you listen to the drums, the more you'll notice certain patterns and fills that he favors on certain styles of Maiden tunes: slow gallops, fast gallops, the anticipations on the "and" of 4, and the syncopated ride cymbal patterns.

To start I'd recommend working on basic rudiments (paradiddles, quads, triplets, 5 stroke rolls) and single pedal bass drum work (incorporating it into these rudiments, working on speed etc.)

In addition, pick up a copy of his "rhythms of the beast" DVD, not only is it an interesting close-up look at his playing, but entertaining as well!
 
well all teh cover songs should make you smile as well nit just the audience!! with my other band we played some manowar, therapy misfits etc, but never iron maiden. now i feel complete!!! thank you my friend. i am sure that once i learn all songs from the first 10 albums i will be a very very very happy man!!!!
 

coolhand1969

Senior Member
Sorry I cannot help you with the intricacies of Nicko's playing, there are much better drummers here who can do this. I would however like to congratulate you on being in a band which plays Iron Maiden. I have loved their music for decades. I was in a band years ago and each practice we were suppossed to bring in a song which we might all decide to add to our set. I came in with Maiden songs and got shot down like a dog everytime. Best of luck!!
 
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