Originally Posted by leoyucht
I have a general jazz drumming question.
I never learned to feather the bass drum as I played. I play a ton of rhythms in my foot so (a la Elvin Jones) mainly because I never learned this method. As of recently, I have been practicing a little bit and playing 4 on the floor when I am not adding other rhythms in the right foot. I was just wondering what your opinion was on this technique - does it actually do anything (sorry if that sounds incredibly ignorant, but I really don't know).
its original purpose was to back up the bass player and add some percussive attack to the walking quarter note before proper amplification when playing with big bands and sort of became tradition
it is still taught as the proper way to learn jazz drumming before branching off into more contemporary approaches
it became less necessary in the bebop and post bop era but a lot of those guys still feathered ....and still today if you watch guys like John Riley and Jeff Hamilton you will see them feathering
it is really meant to be felt and not heard.....it does give the music a real hard swing when played properly
I find myself feathering on certain tunes out of habit.....on certain tunes and tempos it just feels appropriate and really helps drive the music