Why are metal drummers looked down on?

A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
I'm not a complete metalhead. I have emotions too :)

ah....so you like Nile AND Radiohead....I see :)

speaking of Radiohead

Phil Selway is not the most technical player....but he makes the music feel amazing

best to not worry about this stuff brother

every genre has it's immature snobbys
 

Deathmetalconga

Platinum Member
It has always seemed to me that drummers who play heavier styles of music are often thought of as 'not as good as swing/funk drummers. All my drum teachers (apart from Dave Haley from Psycroptic) have told me that it takes much less skill to be a metal drummer than to be a jazz drummer or other sorts of styles. I often hear people say that it takes not much skill to play at 250 bpm for 2 hours straight or play loud and agressively. Most people agree that isn't creative or musical. Blasting/double bass/china cymbals are always talked about badly by other snobs who think they are better because they don't play metal. Why is there such a consensus? I believe it takes a tremendous amount of skill to play at the speeds of George Kollias, David Haley, Derek Roddy, Tim Yeung and other metal drummers. I still like to play funk and other stuff and agree that it needs more finesse and touch, but really it is just a different style. You need different skills to play both metal and funk. I've never seen a jazz drummer who can play at almost 300bpm for hours on end like George Kollias can. But on the other hand I've never seen a metal drummer with the same touch and dynamics. Can't everyone just agree that metal is different and accept that it does take skill to play it well? What do you guys think?

That is all.
Metal can be very technically demanding, so that is not why some people look down on it. Technical issues aside. I think the majority of society perceives Metal as some combination of juvenile, annoying, low-class, drugged-up, Satanic, smelly or goofy.

Having said that, I love '70s and '80s Metal, which I grew up with.
 

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
Well, while technically demanding, I dare say metal is probably a lot less complex,
interactive, improvisational, dynamic and expressive than jazz, that's why I think
genres related to jazz are more demanding musically.

So it depends what skills we're talking about, rather technical ones, or rather
"musical" ones. People who look down on metal rather mean the musical side
of it I suppose.

Apples and oranges in some ways - bodybuilding for the mere sake of it vs. artistic
gymnastics in other ways I guess :D.
 

Dr_Watso

Platinum Member
Q: How many metal drummers does it take to do constant blast beats while hitting a china cymbal on the quarter notes?





A: All of them.
 

GruntersDad

Administrator - Mayor
Staff member
Thank you for finding metal repulsive whilst at the same time agree that it takes an equal amount of time and dedication to get good at it! You are very right. People should not judge an art form based just on whether they like it or not.

Judging something on whether we like it or not is called an opinion and yes, we are allowed to have one. I don't like metal but have not listened to enough of it, because I don't like it, to judge the drummers. I won't have an opinion because I don't have enough info. But people buy art, paintings, sculpture, music, clothes, based on what they like and to say they shouldn't is wrong. If I dont like Van Gogh's paintings I will judge it as , I don't like it.
 

Naigewron

Platinum Member
And if you want an example of a jazz drummer playing that fast, look up the song "Bebop" on For Musicians Only. It is 12 and a half minutes at 362bpm, with a constant up-beat swing, including two full choruses of trading 8's. Stan Levey was just as fast.

Now, for your point, metal DOES take less skill. It's just a fact. Speed ability does not equate to skill. Pick any Elvin Jones lick. To play it at 60bpm is ten times harder than it is to play a blast beat at 200bpm.

That said, I admire metal drummers, just as much as I admire all drummers in the profession. Kollias is one of my favourites, but he is not a typical metal drummer. Neither are people like Hannes Grossman or Derek Roddy, who have dedicated substantial time to mastering other styles.
Derek Roddy and George Kolias are definitely not your average metal drummers... However, Elvin Jones and Stan Levey aren't exactly your average jazz drummers either. If you're going to draw comparisons like that, you're going to have to draw them on both sides, and I'd say there are just as many clicheed drum beats and "crap" drummers in jazz as in metal.

The best metal drummers incorporate other styles into their drumming. Those that don't are typically the ones that are looked down upon. Compare Mike Portnoy to Mike Mangini. I know who I'd rather have in my band, yet both are "metal" drummers. That sort of drumming, taking influence from all sorts of musical and applying it to metal, DOES take as much skill as anything else. Simple blast beats do not.
Derek Roddy brought up this point during his Modern Drummer Festival performance: We always preach versatility for metal drummers, but never for jazz drummers. Why? If a metal drummer should learn jazz, why shouldn't a jazz drummer learn metal? And everything in between, obviously.

Playing the jazz ding-dingaling groove for hours is just as unimaginative, uninspiring and boring as playing a blast beat for the same length of time, and I wouldn't really say that one takes more skill than the other (although there are definitely vastly different skillsets in play, obviously).


Anyway, that's this rock & roll meathead drummer's two cents on that topic :)

Disclaimer: Neither jazz nor metal are genres that I'm very proficient in, but I wanted to chime in for this question since I tend to agree with the statement that metal drumming is often marginalised and looked down on by in general.
 
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joshthedrumkid97

Senior Member
Derek Roddy and George Kolias are definitely not your average metal drummers... However, Elvin Jones and Stan Levey aren't exactly your average jazz drummers either. If you're going to draw comparisons like that, you're going to have to draw them on both sides, and I'd say there are just as many clicheed drum beats and "crap" drummers in jazz as in metal.



Derek Roddy brought up this point during his Modern Drummer Festival performance: We always preach versatility for metal drummers, but never for jazz drummers. Why? If a metal drummer should learn jazz, why shouldn't a jazz drummer learn metal? And everything in between, obviously.

Playing the jazz ding-dingaling groove for hours is just as unimaginative, uninspiring and boring as playing a blast beat for the same length of time, and I wouldn't really say that one takes more skill than the other (although there are definitely vastly different skillsets in play, obviously).


Anyway, that's this rock & roll meathead drummer's two cents on that topic :)

Disclaimer: Neither jazz nor metal are genres that I'm very proficient in, but I wanted to chime in for this question since I tend to agree with the statement that metal drumming is often marginalised and looked down on by in general.
thanks. that was an excellent post
 

toddbishop

Platinum Member
They're fine- without getting into criticism of the music in general, I just see it as a foreign style of drumming. Basically in the same way as banda drumming- whatever it is they're chasing down musically has caused them to shed most of what they ever had in common with the rest of the musical world. There's nothing there for me- that I've heard so far, anyway.

Professionally, there is no reason to learn metal unless you want to get a job in a band- there's no such thing as a "metal gig" in any kind of equivalent way to a freelance jazz gig, or blues, country, theater, R&B, or salsa gig.
 

DrumEatDrum

Platinum Member
They're fine- without getting into criticism of the music in general, I just see it as a foreign style of drumming. Basically in the same way as banda drumming- whatever it is they're chasing down musically has caused them to shed most of what they ever had in common with the rest of the musical world. There's nothing there for me- that I've heard so far, anyway.

Professionally, there is no reason to learn metal unless you want to get a job in a band- there's no such thing as a "metal gig" in any kind of equivalent way to a freelance jazz gig, or blues, country, theater, R&B, or salsa gig.
Vinnie Colaiuta, Steve Smith and Greg Bissonette might disagree just a bit there.
 

Bruce M. Thomson

Gold Member
I guess there is a bit of a condesending attitude in some circles.
Mike Mangini in the March issue of Modern Drummer said (and I am paraphrasing) that drummers like him and several others (he names) who practice this craft don't seem to get the respect for all of the intense study and practing that is required that they put in to their craft. It is extremly intense drumming that still requires all of the finesse of a jazz drummer (for example). If I could play that way I would be very impressed with myself, as it is I could not touch it with a 60 foot pole. I don't have to be an avid listener of a certain style of music to recognise quality. So I guess I would just ignore any comments that tick you off and just keep on keeping on.
 
A

Anthony Amodeo

Guest
They're fine- without getting into criticism of the music in general, I just see it as a foreign style of drumming. Basically in the same way as banda drumming- whatever it is they're chasing down musically has caused them to shed most of what they ever had in common with the rest of the musical world. There's nothing there for me- that I've heard so far, anyway.

Professionally, there is no reason to learn metal unless you want to get a job in a band- there's no such thing as a "metal gig" in any kind of equivalent way to a freelance jazz gig, or blues, country, theater, R&B, or salsa gig.
you are highly misinformed my friend ....highly misinformed
 
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