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  #1  
Old 01-27-2011, 10:45 PM
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Stalwart_Pandora-Chris Stalwart_Pandora-Chris is offline
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Default What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Hey guys

Lately I feel I've had nothing to play on drums at all, like even when I'm improvising solo's with rudiments and stuff, messing about with tunings etc.
I just don't know what to do when I'm playing drums anymore. Any suggestions?

What do you guys do? What are some good tracks to play to (for a single pedal player)?
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  #2  
Old 01-27-2011, 10:47 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

The best motivation?.........Join a band.
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Old 01-27-2011, 10:56 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Whenever I'm stuck for motivation I'll track down one of the top drummers in my city and get a lesson with them. That's usually enough motivation.
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Old 01-27-2011, 10:59 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

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Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
The best motivation?.........Join a band.
^this. You'll be too busy to get bored. Join two if you really want some excitement.
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  #5  
Old 01-27-2011, 11:17 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Go see a band. That always works.

Of just sit down in front of youtube with a practice pad and sticks. Pick a drummer, and look up as many videos as you can by them (their bands, clinic appearances, whatever).
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  #6  
Old 01-30-2011, 01:59 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

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Originally Posted by alparrott View Post
^this. You'll be too busy to get bored. Join two if you really want some excitement.
Already in 3 haha. I'm kinda just improvising, picking up the guitar after recording and then messing about. getting funner I guess, it's just lack of songs to play anymore really and I get bored really easily
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  #7  
Old 01-30-2011, 02:14 AM
don strandberg don strandberg is offline
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Learn the bass drum triplet by John Bonham. From Good times Bad Times,,

If your bored after that. Play guitar,,,,
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  #8  
Old 01-30-2011, 03:20 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

I ended up going through this. I joined my school's band. I learned about Marching Band and ended up joining it halfway through. I'm going to be honest. Joining a band is one of the greatest motivational tools to getting better. Whether it be a high school band or a band with some buddies.

But in the meanwhile you can always practice something. Look up some linear drumming or jazz styles of drumming and try to learn to play in a different style.
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  #9  
Old 01-30-2011, 05:26 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

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Originally Posted by Stalwart_Pandora-Chris View Post
Already in 3 haha.
Yeah? Are they actually doing anything? Man, learning material for three bands should be more than enough to keep you occupied. How can you possibly be at a loose end when it comes to something to play?
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  #10  
Old 01-30-2011, 07:10 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Attend a jam session?
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  #11  
Old 01-30-2011, 10:16 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

You can get into some of the drummerless tracks that have been posted on this board.

Are you saying that you don't know what to play when playing alone, or with a band??
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  #12  
Old 01-30-2011, 11:48 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Lessons? Or wait for the dull spot to blow over? We can't be inspired all the time.

The grafting periods are when you're laying groundwork for improvement. My playing gets lame when I'm trying to improve but that lays the groundwork for the times I'm playing by feel.
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  #13  
Old 01-30-2011, 01:06 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Find a muse.

Thought this thread was going to be about what do you do if it happens in the middle of a song, my answer to that is usually buzz rolls or a 4/4 ride/snare beat.
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  #14  
Old 01-30-2011, 01:17 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

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Originally Posted by Frost View Post
Thought this thread was going to be about what do you do if it happens in the middle of a song, my answer to that is usually buzz rolls or a 4/4 ride/snare beat.
I thought the same thing at first. My answer would have been to try to really get the groove happening - to dive deeper. One day I'll remember to take my own advice.
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  #15  
Old 01-30-2011, 06:05 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Take dance lessons ( no I'm not kidding )

You'll use your body is new and very different ways.

That will then translate over into your playing.

Plus, chicks dig it ;)
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  #16  
Old 01-30-2011, 06:09 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

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Originally Posted by alparrott View Post
^this. You'll be too busy to get bored. Join two if you really want some excitement.
I could not agree more.

I started playing OUTSIDE of my comfort zone genre, and had to learn more slow rock and blues types of music.

It then led to me picking up two steady "leisurely" types of gigs a week, that are paying pretty decently.

Ya never know!
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  #17  
Old 01-30-2011, 06:30 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
Yeah? Are they actually doing anything? Man, learning material for three bands should be more than enough to keep you occupied. How can you possibly be at a loose end when it comes to something to play?
Which was my point. If you're in three bands and you're still bored, you need to re-evaluate at least one of those bands, if not all three. Go put yourself in some sort of crazy, out-of-the-box, not-your-style playing situation. I'm famous (possibly infamous) for lunging at windmills in this fashion:

- pit drummer for musicals
- pickup gigs ("hey, our drummer is so sick he can't play tonight")
- open mic nights
- playing with people or bands that play something you normally don't (blues, latin, country, etc)

This will jumpstart your idea engine, guaranteed. I know I have way more to do and learn on the drums than I have time in the day, following this plan.
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  #18  
Old 01-30-2011, 06:39 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Things aren't boring, people are. Boredom is not an external thing, it is an internal attitude. Maybe you need a little gratitude for what you have. Lose your drums in a fire and when you get new ones, tell me you're still bored.

It's better to want what you have, than to have what you want.
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  #19  
Old 01-30-2011, 10:55 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pocket-full-of-gold View Post
Yeah? Are they actually doing anything? Man, learning material for three bands should be more than enough to keep you occupied. How can you possibly be at a loose end when it comes to something to play?
One of my bands we never get a responce from the bassist so at the moment as bassistless and the other band we've just finished a gig so we'll be practicing soon. The other band is a school jazz band which hasn't been on for 4 months. My dad also cancelled drum lessons and I never get to learn anything new, so I'm kind of just improvising drum beats in different time sigs at the moment and using different techniques. But that's all I really have and when I just want to play something I have nothing to do on drums, not many song suggestions or anything.
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  #20  
Old 01-30-2011, 11:24 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

No wonder you're bored.....your three bands are hardly productive are they?

Your answer is simple......get serious about it all. Join a band that is actually working towards something. You could be in a dozen bands, but if none of them are rehearsing, learning new material, trying to get gigs....then you may as well not be in any.

When I suggested joining a band, I didn't mean bands that aren't actually doing anything.....what's the value in that?

Go forth and PLAY, my friend.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Stalwart_Pandora-Chris View Post
But that's all I really have and when I just want to play something I have nothing to do on drums, not many song suggestions or anything.
I have no song suggestions for you as I don't have the first clue what sort of music you like. Surely you can figure this one out though? What songs do you want to learn? What have you always wanted to play but currently can't? Learn that one.....then move on to the next one and so on and so on.

There's a world full of music out there mate, I'm sure some of it appeals to you......start there. :-)

Last edited by Pocket-full-of-gold; 01-31-2011 at 12:16 AM.
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  #21  
Old 01-31-2011, 12:12 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frost View Post
Find a muse.

Thought this thread was going to be about what do you do if it happens in the middle of a song, my answer to that is usually buzz rolls or a 4/4 ride/snare beat.
Yes, try to listen to as many styles of music as possible, find out what inspires you.

Sometimes at the beginning of a practice session I don't know where to start, so I usually
just start jamming a simple groove or motivic idea on the toms. Most times it'll come.
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  #22  
Old 01-31-2011, 01:07 AM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stalwart_Pandora-Chris View Post
One of my bands we never get a responce from the bassist so at the moment as bassistless and the other band we've just finished a gig so we'll be practicing soon. The other band is a school jazz band which hasn't been on for 4 months. My dad also cancelled drum lessons and I never get to learn anything new, so I'm kind of just improvising drum beats in different time sigs at the moment and using different techniques. But that's all I really have and when I just want to play something I have nothing to do on drums, not many song suggestions or anything.
I don't know, but it sounds to me like you might need a short break. There are times where I will go to play my drums only to stop 10-15 minutes later because I'm just not feeling it. But I'll do that like 3-4 days in a row! Unfortunately, this results in a little bit of depression which causes me to not play for a week or 2. However, when I go back after that short break, I feel it again and have several new things to "say" with my drums and I end up having a very fun little solo session.

So I think what might be happening is you might need to take a break in order to store up some new things to say on your drums.

I used to watch Late Night with Conan O'Brien mostly just to see Max Weinberg play. I still remember a show where, from the very first note of the opening theme song, I noticed that the entire band sounded more enthusiastic than usual. Max even played a few things that he normally never really played before during this opening theme song. Even Conan noticed! As soon as the band finished the opening theme song, he made some comment about the band sounding different (like more energetic, or "zippy" or something - I can't remember his joke). Max replied that it was because it was the first day back from their 1-week vacation during which Max didn't play his drums at all. I remember that even though he was joking back with Conan, he got serious for a second and very briefly explained in just a few words that sometimes taking a break renews your enthusiasm.

But if you can't take a break, then I guess all I would be able to recommend is that you may need to stop trying. A good friend of mine once told me, "Tim! Don't make it happen; let it happen!" We were trying to write a song, and I kept having problems playing because I kept trying too hard.
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  #23  
Old 01-31-2011, 02:28 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

When I find myself lagging, I put on one of my hundreds of concert DVDs and I get inspired in a real hurry.
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  #24  
Old 01-31-2011, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: What to do when you don't know what to do when your trying to play drums?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rastaron View Post
Take dance lessons ( no I'm not kidding )

You'll use your body is new and very different ways.

That will then translate over into your playing.

Plus, chicks dig it ;)
An interesting suggestion. Could be worth looking into, except for the fact past attempts at dancing have landed up horribly
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