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  #1  
Old 05-08-2012, 06:51 PM
Yea Ed Yea Ed is offline
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Default Hi-hat profiency test poll

...

I was wondering how many of you can hold an quarter note or an 8th note ostinato with your left foot and...:


a) Do anything else with the rest of your limbs, including all kinds of syncopation & tempo changes and accent any of the ostinato notes you choose to?

b) Do mostly everything you want but struggle with independence issues in some situations?

c) Do it only on very simple and basic grooves?

d) Struggle with all of it.?

Would also be interesting to hear what your feelings on this subject might be?


...
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  #2  
Old 05-08-2012, 07:12 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

I do this a lot, and I find it to be very useful. Sometimes I don't do an ostinato with my hihat, but most of the time I'll either play quarters, eight notes, or just the upbeat eight notes. I fit into category b) of you list. I still struggle with some limb independance, but have a lot of i down, especially those three simple hi hat things. I don't know about accenting different notes or how that would be useful. It sounds very superfluous to me.

I many use this technique to emphasize and/or add some beef to the stick definition when I on the ride. Its adds a lot to the groove. Also, I often put a tambourine on my hi hats, so when I'm riding, I can add tambourine on the upbeats or whatever. It also helps to stomp eight notes or quarter notes while you're soloing, so you and your band don't lose the time.

It sounded daunting at first, but it was surprisingly very natural once I started getting into more advanced independence exercises.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:13 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yea Ed View Post
...

I was wondering how many of you can hold an quarter note or an 8th note ostinato with your left foot and...:


a) Do anything else with the rest of your limbs, including all kinds of syncopation & tempo changes and accent any of the ostinato notes you choose to?

b) Do mostly everything you want but struggle with independence issues in some situations?

c) Do it only on very simple and basic grooves?

d) Struggle with all of it.?

Would also be interesting to hear what your feelings on this subject might be?


...
I can play pretty much everything against a quarter note or 8th note on my left foot. Some stuff makes me think, of course, like playing blast beats, but most anything becomes comfortable after a few playthroughs.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:25 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

I have been working on this recently (steady 8ths on the hihat with heel down). Basically, everyday I do Tommy Igoe's BASIC GHfaLT, with some of my own/teacher's stuff added. While doing these I switch between various foot patterns:

(2/4: - = 1/8 note)
Code:
HH: --x-
BD: o-o-

HH: -x-x
BD: o-o-

HH: xxxx
BD: o-o-
The last one, with the constant HH's, I do for as long as possible on each exercise until my calf tells me to stop. At 96bpm I can keep them going for 3+ min after I'm warmed up (1min cold start), and on good days I can keep them going indefinitely.
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  #5  
Old 05-08-2012, 07:27 PM
Anthony Amodeo
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

A)

my left foot patterns change with pretty much every section of a tune... usually unconsciously ...unless it's a jazz date....then 2 & 4 stay pretty steady, most of the time anyway....Ill still explore some when the tune calls for it

sometimes 8ths, sometimes quarters, sometimes "ands" "Es" or "uhs"

but most of the time my left foot is playing "chicks" and "splashes" in select spots like a third hand to enhance grooves and/or fills ...sometimes I think of them as ghost notes

I feel a drummer who uses his left foot strictly as a time keeper is doing his drumming a disservice

the left foot should be developed into its own instrument to compliment the other three

Last edited by Anthony Amodeo; 05-08-2012 at 08:54 PM.
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:28 PM
Yea Ed Yea Ed is offline
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by wsabol View Post
I don't know about accenting different notes or how that would be useful. It sounds very superfluous to me.

By accents I meant like a little heel-toe splash on one of the notes.


..
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  #7  
Old 05-08-2012, 08:42 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

I can keep time with my left foot, play off beats, 8ths or 1/4 through practically anything, everything i practice, whether it rudiment groove or whatever i play my hi hat foot. Linear grooves everything.
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

My answer would be letter a).
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  #9  
Old 05-09-2012, 06:11 AM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Here's a fun one for all of you guys to mess with! Start with quarter notes on your left foot, and playing straight 8ths with your right on the ride. Right foot on the bass drum plays 1 and 3, left hand on snare plays 2 and 4. Here's the fun part ;) Offset the whole groove forwards by a 16th note, but keep the quarters on the left foot the same. Now, offset forward again, then again, and then again, back to the start. It's a lot of fun, and makes most people do a little double take, haha.
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Old 05-09-2012, 11:04 AM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Answer A for hi hat on 2 and 4 answer B for quarter notes on the hats.I just can't play some of the jazz licks I use with quarter note hats.
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  #11  
Old 05-09-2012, 11:09 AM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yea Ed View Post
...

I was wondering how many of you can hold an quarter note or an 8th note ostinato with your left foot and...:


a) Do anything else with the rest of your limbs, including all kinds of syncopation & tempo changes and accent any of the ostinato notes you choose to?

b) Do mostly everything you want but struggle with independence issues in some situations?

c) Do it only on very simple and basic grooves?

d) Struggle with all of it.?

Would also be interesting to hear what your feelings on this subject might be?


...
I'm definitely a 'b'. But sometimes I can do 'a'. I can definitely do 'b' and sing at the same time, so it's relative to the 'a' stuff and probably just as hard since I'm now dealing with musical phrasing, pitch, and tone as well.

But the important thing is to know when not to do that and just provide nice smooth time for the rest of the band. Drummers don't know how jarring it is to others if you have all the cogs in the machine making noise at the same time ;)
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Old 05-09-2012, 12:29 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gvdadrummasum View Post
but most of the time my left foot is playing "chicks" and "splashes" in select spots like a third hand to enhance grooves and/or fills ...sometimes I think of them as ghost notes

I feel a drummer who uses his left foot strictly as a time keeper is doing his drumming a disservice

the left foot should be developed into its own instrument to compliment the other three
Although I would be in the C category, I've been working a lot and focusing more on my hi-hat proficiency. My accent work is really good, like for reggae or ska type music, but I've never been a left foot time keeper. I haven't used chicks very much in my playing, so lately I've been trying to use them more and work them into the groove more.

I agree with what you're saying here.
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  #13  
Old 05-09-2012, 01:39 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

A, except for any complex polyrhythms (which I can't play with my hands anyway)

Not sure exactly what you mean by tempo changes, like speeding up my other limbs while keeping my left foot constant? I've never tried.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:41 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Funny you should mention it. My old teacher from Seattle just published this. Was going to send away for a copy. I will let you know when it gets here.

As far as the poll, number 4 but that is from my own technical limitations, so back to the wood shed for me. I can keep it consistent on 2 and 4 but it gets funny when the Polyrythms show up. I am always looking for one.

http://www.alfred.com/Products/The-H...-00-39418.aspx
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  #15  
Old 05-09-2012, 01:41 PM
aydee aydee is offline
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by kettles View Post
Not sure exactly what you mean by tempo changes, like speeding up my other limbs while keeping my left foot constant? I've never tried.
I think the technical term is metric modulation but stuff that implies a different tempo in which the quarter note remains constant.
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:48 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by aydee View Post
I think the technical term is metric modulation but stuff that implies a different tempo in which the quarter note remains constant.
Ok. Well I can do that to some extent, but I have never needed it when playing in a band (one day!)
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  #17  
Old 05-09-2012, 03:22 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

i'm working on it.

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  #18  
Old 05-13-2012, 06:50 AM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

When teaching students, I ALWAYS teach them coordination practices first (along with stick technique of course).

The one factor that launched my drumming from "just keeping a beat" to destroying them was learning how to coordinate my left foot and my right foot as different "brains". I did this by studying Jimmy Chamberlin of the Smashing Pumpkins.

If you can imagine your hi hat foot being a straight metronome, just keep tapping eighth notes for a straight 30 seconds or so, then mentally put that notion aside while your foot is still on "automatic", and then play what you normally would play to this "left foot metronome", you will feel so empowered and flow-y with everything you're doing. It's truly a great feeling! It takes lots of practice though, but it helps a lot with tempo and coordination.

Just remember that your right foot has absolutely no correlation with your left foot. The right foot (this is all assuming you are a right handed drummer) can do anything it wants to with regard to beat, and is not "chained" to your left foot as your left foot is on automatic in this situation. This is especially cool if you're doing those eighth note patterns and then you're kicking on off beats.

and you kind of do a left foot-right foot kind of thing on those off beats. anyways that may be confusing but I think it's so important to develop that coordination with your limbs!
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Old 05-13-2012, 06:16 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

a)

I ALWAYS work with my hi-hat, no matter what I'm working on.
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  #20  
Old 05-13-2012, 07:27 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

I'm sort of between a "c" and a "d".

I've never worked hard enough on being able to keep 8ths going on the hats and doing whatever I want on the rest of the kit. I can play the hats on the 2 and 4 with varying degrees of tastiness. I often use a jingle ring and like heavy chicking to add spice to my backbeats. I do this more when we play as a three piece. Our harmonic player usually takes on tambourine duty.

I also have gotten pretty adept at left hand hat accents on the 1 and 3, as well as random off beat left hand accents, to color up the groove. I know I've incorporated these little licks into my groove playing to compensate for not being able to play everything I want to with my left foot.

When I see drummers running their hats like a metronome and effortlessly playing around the kit, I think every time that I need to bite the bullet and get some lessons or suck it up and figure it out. You know, practice the stuff that's the hardest for me.

Go ahead and laugh but this is how I've been trying to work on it.

To work on separating my left hand/left foot tendencies to be in unison is a simple little brain unlocking exercise. I play a simple 4/4 beat playing 8ths on the ride, bass drum on 1 and 3, snare on 2 and 4. Even and solid. Then I switch to 4 on the floor for a little while concentrating on even and solid. Then I go to adding my snare to the 4 on the floor bass drum hits and play that for a little. Now my left foot is easily chugging along to my snare and my 8ths on the ride are still solid. Now I can go back to the kick on 1 and 3 and drop the 1 and 3 snare hits and my left foot is still cruising.

I can usually keep this going for about a minute or more but then if I think about it too much it just falls apart.

If I try to practice playing quarters or 8ths with my left foot and only play the snare on 2 and 4, I can do it but I haven't successly transferred this to the kit when it comes to transitioning to this during a song and having it be really smooth and not detract from the groove. I'm working on it but it's gonna take time. So meanwhile I've consolidated that whole rigamarole above into one 2-beat lick that I can use (like right before a guitar solo where it will sound good to keep time on the hats) by going to bass, snare and hats all in unison for 2 beats move into some tasty bell riding and I can keep the hats going.

At the current rate I've been practicing and playing out, it will be another six months before I can get my left foot hat playing to go on autopilot if I want or need to.

Feel free to throw a practice tip my way. I've been playing for so long that I know that most of my left foot and left hand weaknesses stem from my lack of studying early on, reinforced bad habits and general laziness.

Very timely subject for me. This has been bugging me for a few months now and I've finally started working on this a bit harder and I've been struggling with it. I envy a bit right now the players that make this look easy.
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Old 05-13-2012, 07:34 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by JesusMySavior View Post
If you can imagine your hi hat foot being a straight metronome, just keep tapping eighth notes for a straight 30 seconds or so, then mentally put that notion aside while your foot is still on "automatic", and then play what you normally would play to this "left foot metronome", you will feel so empowered and flow-y with everything you're doing. It's truly a great feeling! It takes lots of practice though, but it helps a lot with tempo and coordination.
BTW, thank you Jesus.
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Old 05-13-2012, 07:47 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

I'm like G-man in that I try and use the hi hat as an integral part of my voicing, as well as ostinato-ing, and any other creative thing I can think of doing with it. splashes, accents, quirky stuff...Hi hats are where a lot of my nuance lives. In one application I use a series of splashes on the quarters, increasing in volume, leading up to loud part of the song, so I use it to lead the dynamics. Really the sky's the limit with that thing. It makes so many great sounds. Fills that are too intrusive on the toms (like behind a vocalist for instance) usually always work on the hats. Make the most out of your hi hats. Great hi hat work always makes me think that the person doing it is a real pro.

I have 4 way independence, but like me, it's limited. I can do what I need to do, but I can't do everything I want to do.
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  #23  
Old 05-13-2012, 08:01 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

A mostly
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  #24  
Old 05-16-2012, 11:20 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

It's pretty much not a groove (or a complete exercise) until the left foot is in there. Nobody's a perfect A, but a drummer should be very proficient with it imho.
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Old 05-17-2012, 01:59 AM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yea Ed View Post
...

I was wondering how many of you can hold an quarter note or an 8th note ostinato with your left foot and...:


a) Do anything else with the rest of your limbs, including all kinds of syncopation & tempo changes and accent any of the ostinato notes you choose to?

b) Do mostly everything you want but struggle with independence issues in some situations?

c) Do it only on very simple and basic grooves?

d) Struggle with all of it.?

Would also be interesting to hear what your feelings on this subject might be?


...
I would be in category A. I have been playing for 29 years and my very first instructor drilled that into my head: Always, always keep your left foot going keeping the pulse. Now I don't always do the pulse, but it is there, heel-up and heel-down, maybe doing a clave or something in a different time against the other limbs. I never touched a double pedal and missed out and that craze, choosing instead to develop my hihat skills.

As I have said before, the left foot is the drum set of the drum set. It does for the drum set, what the drum set does for the rest of the band. Anchor.
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  #26  
Old 05-19-2012, 05:28 PM
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Default Re: Hi-hat profiency test poll

I fall into the b) category. It's still a mindjob for me to play LRFRLF repeating as sixteenth note triplets (accenting the lefts) while keeping eights with my left foot.
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