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  #81  
Old 01-13-2010, 08:34 AM
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Pollyanna Pollyanna is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
Similarly, I kind of like finding a definitive fill (or event) and using it at every "like" point is a song, using it as a recurring theme. Have to be careful with that to keep from getting stale or boring, but a little bit predictable is okay, as long as it sounds really cool.
That's like the Rick Marotta example I gave earlier. It's ostensibly the same fill but each one is a little different.
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  #82  
Old 01-13-2010, 10:10 AM
JPW JPW is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

One more thought from my perspective (which should be known by now =P). When we start jamming with our band we usually tell someone in our band to give us a motiv. Usually it's a riff or a short melody but sometimes they want me to start with a beat. It would be ok if it happened once a year. But I usually have to come up with something completely different each week. Not that they care if I again play the same JPW-funky-d&b-beat I always play, but I care. I'm always really depressed if I play the same things all over again. Except of course, if we have decided to practice one of our predefined songs. But even then I try out to bring something new every time.

But how's one going to have that kind of continuous flow of creativity every rehearsal? Listening to broad range of music (from lounge jazz to extreme metal to electronic music) has of course opened many doors. Technique has opened some, coordination some other doors. But still most of the ideas are utter crap. =P

One thing that was mentioned in this thread was layering and emblenishment of the original beat (or motiv) and I do that a lot. The book Motivic Drumset Soloing has given me lot of tools for that. (and no it doesn't have to be applied only to solos). Our music is quite progressive anyways so it fits. Usually we do these enormous build-ups and release and then build up again (at least on our post-rock days).

If you were to start a jam with a beat where would you start and why?
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  #83  
Old 01-13-2010, 10:24 AM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by Pollyanna View Post
I've never played along with it and never picked up that it has no fills. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQwwqajZXD8.

The band was mainly playing skiffle music back then and the drummer's job was just to keep it grooving, which Ringo does in spades. He loves getting that cymbal wash going and pumping out the beat. He does the same thing, but to arguably even better effect, in Tomorrow Never Knows. It really establishes an atmosphere.
Interesting. I never would have thought of it that way. So you are saying that is how a skiffle drummer would play it? The Beatles weren't playing skiffle then, were they? This was 1964. They were a pop/rock band by then. The Quarrymen which was formed in 1957 was a skiffle band. Musicologist Alan W. Pollack analyzed every single Beatles song in depth. Here's an interesting quote from Pollack on Ringo's drumming in the song A Hard Day's Night:

"The wall of sound effect is partly the result of the drumming style being kept unvaried throughout. With the minor exception of some added four-in-the-bar beating on a cowbell during the bridges, we have wall to wall thumping on drums and cymbals in place of the sort of drum fills and texture changes we're more used to hearing Ringo employ to differentiate formal sections. Instead of creating a "problem", this monolithic approach to percussion here actually adds to the steam-rolling thrust of the song."
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  #84  
Old 01-13-2010, 10:56 AM
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Swiss Matthias Swiss Matthias is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by JPW View Post
One more thought from my perspective (which should be known by now =P). When we start jamming with our band we usually tell someone in our band to give us a motiv. Usually it's a riff or a short melody but sometimes they want me to start with a beat. It would be ok if it happened once a year. But I usually have to come up with something completely different each week. Not that they care if I again play the same JPW-funky-d&b-beat I always play, but I care. I'm always really depressed if I play the same things all over again. Except of course, if we have decided to practice one of our predefined songs. But even then I try out to bring something new every time.
Do you know the Wayne Krantz trio? They have a very interesting approach to their half-improvised tunes. In Keith Carlock's new DVD they explain and demonstrate quite a big deal about it. Could be of interest to you and your band.
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  #85  
Old 01-13-2010, 10:58 AM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by Swiss Matthias View Post
Do you know the Wayne Krantz trio? They have a very interesting approach to their half-improvised tunes. In Keith Carlock's new DVD they explain and demonstrate quite a big deal about it. Could be of interest to you and your band.
Thanks, I try to check that DVD out. =)
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  #86  
Old 01-13-2010, 11:32 AM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
Andy I stole this from you. I'm going to do it just like this from now on.
Thanks for the compliment Larry. It works for me but certainly won't suit all. Like all challenges in life, I tend to break things down into manageable chunks then re assemble with an eye to the end result. I find stripping a beat down helps me reason why each component should be there or not, as the case may be.
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  #87  
Old 01-13-2010, 11:48 AM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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But I usually have to come up with something completely different each week. Not that they care if I again play the same JPW-funky-d&b-beat I always play, but I care. I'm always really depressed if I play the same things all over again. Except of course, if we have decided to practice one of our predefined songs. But even then I try out to bring something new every time.

But how's one going to have that kind of continuous flow of creativity every rehearsal?
I don't think you should get depressed when you struggle to find something completely different each time. Most of the time, if something's dead right, it just slots into place & sits beautifully. Trying to bring something fresh to your "pre defined" songs is a good thing but doesn't necessarily mean a total change. Something new can be a slightly different feel, dynamic, build, tempo, fill, space, etc, etc. You shouldn't need to reinvent your set pieces every time to achieve fulfillment.

Ok, you find yourself a stunning woman. Everything is great, bedroom prowess, companionship, intellectual connection, the whole deal. Do you then dump her for a new model each day/week/month whatever, or do you constantly tweak the elements & experiences within the realtionship to keep the spice & end up with something of greater depth & wholesomeness? Easy choice for me at least.
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  #88  
Old 01-13-2010, 05:00 PM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by Pollyanna View Post
The band was mainly playing skiffle music back then and the drummer's job was just to keep it grooving, which Ringo does in spades. He loves getting that cymbal wash going and pumping out the beat. He does the same thing, but to arguably even better effect, in Tomorrow Never Knows. It really establishes an atmosphere.
FYI, that's a 1-bar drum loop - maybe the first on a record and literally a loop of tape - but it does indeed create an atmosphere. It was Lennon's song, so it may actually have been his idea, not a part that Ringo deliberately created. BTW, I have the utmost respect for Ringo's ability to create parts, and also his ability to take direction (the guys - esp. paul - were known to suggest parts to him on a regular basis.)

Bermuda
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  #89  
Old 01-13-2010, 06:14 PM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by MikeM View Post
This is exactly how Neil Peart used to construct his parts (not so much anymore). I don't use this method, but not for lack of liking it. My attention span is too short!

Similarly, I kind of like finding a definitive fill (or event) and using it at every "like" point is a song, using it as a recurring theme. Have to be careful with that to keep from getting stale or boring, but a little bit predictable is okay, as long as it sounds really cool.
Good catch. It does come from a Neil Peart interview. But when he uses it, he takes the "add a little more" to an extreme and the 3rd fill tends to be a bar long roll around the toms or something similar.

Definitive fills can be fun. I love the way Larry Mullen Jr played on the 1st few U2 albums, in that he wouldn't just play beat, then a fill, but he would play a beat, and then a part, and he would set up 4 and 8 bar phrases that would repeat, creating a rhythmic hook similar to how a guitar player might set up a hook.

So it can be fun to take a bit of both ideas, in having a "part" but making subtle changes to it every time it comes around.
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  #90  
Old 01-14-2010, 08:28 AM
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Pollyanna Pollyanna is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

Thanks for the quote, nocTurnal. Very interesting. There are so many ways to approach drum part-making - to stay put on the beat or to add? If adding, where and how? But when all the options get too confusing and I'm wracked with doubt, I find there's one truly safe haven - stick like glue to the bassline :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by bermuda View Post
FYI, that's a 1-bar drum loop - maybe the first on a record and literally a loop of tape - but it does indeed create an atmosphere.
Thanks for the info, Bermuda. I obviously had no idea about that. I felt it would have been very hard to play that part so solidly and consistently, and was hugely impressed at how Ringo achieved that :)

A precursor to the drum machine - the Ringo machine!
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  #91  
Old 01-14-2010, 10:22 AM
JPW JPW is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

Tomorrow Never Knows is by far the best song of The Beatles to me BTW. =P
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  #92  
Old 01-14-2010, 01:32 PM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Tomorrow Never Knows is by far the best song of The Beatles to me BTW. =P
It's a great song for anyone who likes their psychedelia. The Beatles did some good ones - Within Without You, A Day In The Life, Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite, Strawberry Fields, I Am The Walrus off the top of my head.

Then there's his famous part in Come Together. Even if Bermuda tells us that Paul and the others were creating a fair few of Ringo's drum parts it still leaves me wondering how someone could dream up such a drum part to the riff. If the drumming was straight backbeat the song would have sounded ordinary. I'm guessing that the drum part was thought of first or simultaneously with the bass riff.

Talking of spaced-out music, I watched the Pink Floyd Pompeii DVD for the first time recently (just a couple of years late) and Nick Mason plays some really atmospheric drum parts to their more ethereal songs like A Saucerful of Secrets and Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun. Niiiice!

Last edited by Pollyanna; 01-15-2010 at 01:22 PM.
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  #93  
Old 01-15-2010, 01:35 PM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

Another great drum part was Keith Moon in I Can See For Miles, where the drums play question and answer with the vocal during the verses.
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  #94  
Old 01-15-2010, 02:32 PM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by Pollyanna View Post
It's a great song for anyone who likes their psychedelia. The Beatles did some good ones - Within Without You, A Day In The Life, Being For The Benefit Of Mr Kite, Strawberry Fields, I Am The Walrus off the top of my head.

Then there's his famous part in Come Together. Even if Bermuda tells us that Paul and the others were creating a fair few of Ringo's drum parts it still leaves me wondering how someone could dream up such a drum part to the riff. If the drumming was straight backbeat the song would have sounded ordinary. I'm guessing that the drum part was thought of first or simultaneously with the bass riff.

Talking of spaced-out music, I watched the Pink Floyd Pompeii DVD for the first time recently (just a couple of years late) and Nick Mason plays some really atmospheric drum parts to their more ethereal songs like A Saucerful of Secrets and Set the Controls for the Heart of the Sun. Niiiice!
I've had some of the most interesting parts suggested to me by other instrumentalists. They don't hear drums as "drummers" and so sometimes have a better view of the possibilities rather than doing what's "right".
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  #95  
Old 07-16-2012, 11:36 PM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by MikeM View Post

The notion that if you're looking for artistic expression and are a drummer, that you've picked the wrong instrument is the biggest load of baloney I've ever heard. Tell that to Neil Peart. In his heyday, he sculpted in rhythms. Hell, he still does.
I agree with this x10 Mike. It seems like many people seem to think there is only one way to play a certain song, and if you don't play it that way you are an overplaying heathen. I mean I completely agree in playing for the music, but I've always thought that adding your own flair and creativity to parts is what the drums are about. Of course there are some who would take this overboard and play in an extremely pretentious (popular word on this thread eh?) fashion.

I believe in expressing yourself, but not at the cost of ruining the song or the creator of the song's vision for that song.

Oops I also didn't realize I brought this thread back from the dead
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  #96  
Old 07-17-2012, 01:08 AM
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Lunar Satellite Brian Lunar Satellite Brian is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

Assuming we're talking about original songs, I usually just listen to the music a lot and get a feel for them and then I play along, basically just covering the accents with the snare and doing whatever I feel like doing with everything else, and then I work on finding nice places to syncopate, more advanced bass drum patterns, cut some stuff here, add some stuff there.

http://snd.sc/OKcovA

This is something I recorded recently, the drum recording is literally the second time I ever played through the song.(the whole recording was a practice recording really) as you can tell, the drum part pretty much follows the bass or guitar throughout the song(unless I screwed up, which happened a lot) and now I'm working on the final drum track which will be more complex and syncopated and less of a follow-along beat.

EDIT: I haven't read any of the other replies yet, so sorry if I'm a bit "off-topic"
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  #97  
Old 07-17-2012, 03:15 AM
Luke50001 Luke50001 is offline
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Originally Posted by Lunar Satellite Brian View Post
Assuming we're talking about original songs, I usually just listen to the music a lot and get a feel for them and then I play along, basically just covering the accents with the snare and doing whatever I feel like doing with everything else, and then I work on finding nice places to syncopate, more advanced bass drum patterns, cut some stuff here, add some stuff there.

http://snd.sc/OKcovA

This is something I recorded recently, the drum recording is literally the second time I ever played through the song.(the whole recording was a practice recording really) as you can tell, the drum part pretty much follows the bass or guitar throughout the song(unless I screwed up, which happened a lot) and now I'm working on the final drum track which will be more complex and syncopated and less of a follow-along beat.

EDIT: I haven't read any of the other replies yet, so sorry if I'm a bit "off-topic"
Haha for someone who's learning to figure out how to create drum parts, using extreme experimental music as an example might be found confusing!! But I'm digging the Lunar Satellite tunes :)
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  #98  
Old 07-17-2012, 06:29 AM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

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Haha for someone who's learning to figure out how to create drum parts, using extreme experimental music as an example might be found confusing!! But I'm digging the Lunar Satellite tunes :)
haha, thanks, I was over-exaggerating when I said Extreme Experimental as the genre doe.
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  #99  
Old 07-17-2012, 09:52 AM
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Default Re: creating drum parts for songs

Like Aerosmith said, "Let the music do the talking".

I'll go through various sources of illumination before I reach the verification stage. Even then, I'm open to another band member's interpretation too and I welcome their input.
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