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  #1  
Old 06-11-2009, 12:11 AM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default The Key to Speed

The Key to Speed?

Hi Guys,

I am pretty new to drumming, but have now been playing for a couple of years. I mix up playing along to songs with working through Tommy Igoe DVDs and doing fairly regular rudiments on a pad. One major problem I seem to have run into is getting sufficient speed in the right (main) hand on the hi hat.

Working on rudiments, I've made really good progress in increasing speed on rudiments with varied sticking patterns, such as flams/flam variants, paradiddles etc. However, I seem to be making virtually no speed progress at all with basic stuff such as single stroke rolls, doubles and one-hand rolls. This seems to be holding back my overall progress with improving on the kit, and it's getting really annoying.

My question to you all is, "what is the key to single hand speed?" (ie. repeated single strokes with the right hand, or repeated single strokes with the left). How much of it is due to strength (and can therefore be remedied by working out!), how much is due to technique (and can therefore be remedied by working on improving that) and how much is due to pure talent (and therefore can't be improved - maybe!)?.

My challenge to you all is to share your views on this, and if you can, to guestimate percentages: e.g if you think it's mainly due to strength, a bit down to technique, and a bit less to talent, you could put"

Strength - 60%
Technique - 30%
Talent - 10%

Of course, if you think that it's mainly down to talent, and those of us without enough will never quite get there, you could put something like:

Strength - 20%
Technique - 20%
Talent - 60%

Of course it would be great if you could also explain a little why you put the scores that you did.

Am really looking forward to getting all of your views - my speed block is driving me crazy!

James
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  #2  
Old 06-11-2009, 12:26 AM
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jingscrivenshelpmaboab jingscrivenshelpmaboab is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

When I teach students, I always say:

Speed is a by-product of accuracy.

Getting rudiments right and accurate will evenually lead you to becoming faster.

Practice = 100%
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  #3  
Old 06-11-2009, 12:46 AM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

It's clear that practice is really critical, but I am sure that you will appreciate that there are different elements to practice, and that whilst one person might need time x to nail a particular drum element/exercise, another person might need time 3x, which is where talent may come in.

I suppose that part of what I am trying to get at is - what is the most efficient way to use practice time in order to build up speed? Maybe if practice was included as one of the elements, the four could now be:

Practice %
Strength %
Technique %
Talent %

If that is the case, are you suggesting that the percentages should be:

Practice 100%
Strength 0%
Technique 0%
Talent 0%

?

Be good to hear more
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  #4  
Old 06-11-2009, 01:36 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Remember that you're not in a position to judge how much, or how little talent you possess. It's irrelevant - all you can do is practice, and see how far you get. Strength and technique are but two aspects that you will develop in your practice.
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Old 06-11-2009, 01:50 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by jingscrivenshelpmaboab View Post
When I teach students, I always say:

Speed is a by-product of accuracy.

Getting rudiments right and accurate will evenually lead you to becoming faster.

Practice = 100%
Not if you are practicing with bad technique and keep advancing that bad technique till you eventually cant go any further with that bad technique or you hurt yourself. Practicing bad technique just makes you very good at being bad.
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  #6  
Old 06-11-2009, 02:01 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Singles doubles, flams. These are the only 3 strokes you can do. OK maybe triples. I am in my 3rd year of dedicated single stroke practice, and I am finally becoming somewhat happy with them. It just takes a long time and millions of hits. I think it is equal parts strength, technique, practice. Talent is the least thing you need to do the 3 basic strokes. Using them musically? That's where the talent comes in to play. Before you can achieve speed, you must first achieve control, it is the precursor to speed. In other words, if you want to work on speed, focus on control (accuracy)
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  #7  
Old 06-11-2009, 05:21 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonescrusher View Post
Remember that you're not in a position to judge how much, or how little talent you possess. It's irrelevant - all you can do is practice, and see how far you get. Strength and technique are but two aspects that you will develop in your practice.
+1

Quote:
Originally Posted by brittc89 View Post
Not if you are practicing with bad technique and keep advancing that bad technique till you eventually cant go any further with that bad technique or you hurt yourself. Practicing bad technique just makes you very good at being bad.
I think jingscrivenshelpmaboab's comment, especially since he/she was talking about accuracy, implied practicing with proper technique.
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  #8  
Old 06-11-2009, 07:00 AM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Thanks for all of the really useful comments.

I can appreciate that long hours of practice are pretty much essential to building up both accuracy and speed.

I suppose my main surprise is that whilst my speed has easily doubled for some of the rudiments, for others, it really has stood still. With single strokes on one hand, the stamina is a big issue, which is why I raised the question of both technique and strength. I am very confident the technique with my main hand is good: I have Jojo Mayer's DVD, in addition to the two of Tommy Igoe. Technique with the left hand is still pretty rough - I just need to practice that more. With the stamina thing, however, the other point I notice is that if I have a break for a week or so, I can actually go backwards! I have a job that is pretty demanding, and can't always get the practise in that I'd like.

So, when I do have some extra time, should all the rudiment practice time be spent doing rudiments, or would it be better, for e.g. doing two thirds rudiments and spend the rest doing some working out to build arm strength?

Great comments so far, but looking forward to hearing some more feedback

James
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  #9  
Old 06-11-2009, 09:18 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

The biggest key to speed is to relax. Powering through drum licks will only leave you tired and cause damage to sticks, cymbals, heads etc. Over time, you will improve in stamina if you play a good deal. Good things to work on are single stroke rolls either on a practice pad, snare drum, or whole set (think the end of a Buddy Rich solo--watch a few on this site to see what I'm talking about). However, don't expect to go out there and play like Rich, Bellson, Peart, or whoever right away. Other musicians MUCH prefer a drummer than knows what he is doing musically rather than one who can simple hit things really fast. Some guys use speed as an illusion for talent, but really it's just a coverup for a large ego and no musical awareness. When used at the right time, speed playing is helpful, but this should not be the first priority for a drummer.
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  #10  
Old 06-11-2009, 09:25 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Brown View Post
+1



I think jingscrivenshelpmaboab's comment, especially since he/she was talking about accuracy, implied practicing with proper technique.
Accuracy doesnt imply proper technique, plenty of people can be accurate up to a certain point with poor technique. Im saying if youre doing something like playing really stiff, you may not reach your ideal speed no matter how long you practice.
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  #11  
Old 06-11-2009, 01:11 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by legobeast View Post

So, when I do have some extra time, should all the rudiment practice time be spent doing rudiments, or would it be better, for e.g. doing two thirds rudiments and spend the rest doing some working out to build arm strength?

Great comments so far, but looking forward to hearing some more feedback

James

If by working out you mean building muscles, then no. The only way to build rudimental stamina is to practice the rudiments. Muscle size is no factor. The single stroke is by far one of the hardest rudiments to get clean and powerful, nevermind up to speed. Expect it to take many hundreds of hours.
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  #12  
Old 06-11-2009, 03:46 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

i'd like to take this opportunity to dispel some myths.

first of all, there seems to be a common myth that strength is an important factor in drumming and in playing fast. it is not. stamina is factor and certainly technique, but not strength. you can use techniques like the moeller stroke to hit as hard as you want without any special strength, and strength will not help you play faster. that applies to double bass as well.

the other myth is that talent is a big factor. what is talent anyway? you show me someone with "talent" and i'll show you someone with passion and motivation who has worked their ass off to get where they are.
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  #13  
Old 06-11-2009, 08:05 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by Billy Brown View Post
+1



I think jingscrivenshelpmaboab's comment, especially since he/she was talking about accuracy, implied practicing with proper technique.

Thank you kid sir, I was indeed refering to practice with correct technique.
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  #14  
Old 06-11-2009, 08:42 PM
VedranS VedranS is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by legobeast View Post
With the stamina thing, however, the other point I notice is that if I have a break for a week or so, I can actually go backwards! I have a job that is pretty demanding, and can't always get the practise in that I'd like.
I don't mean to be discouraging, but if you only have time to practice once a week or so, your progress will be extremely slow if it's there at all. If that's all the time you have available I understand, but you're going to have to be patient and practice correctly and not expect huge or fast results. Don't try to take shortcuts or to push yourself too hard when you do get a chance to practice, it's not going to help you and will only engrain bad habits, such as tensing up.

If you're trying to get faster, try this. Do your single strokes very slowly, to the point where you're absolutely relaxed, but not only that, play them with very low stick heights. Don't play the strokes with the stick height/volume that's easiest at that tempo, instead play very quietly with low stick heights. Like, try for less than an inch off the pad/drum. You'll notice that controlling the evenness of your strokes will be more difficult. If it's difficult, you're already adding more technique to your arsenal!
Just make sure to keep it slow. Since you have to play with lower stick heights when playing fast, this is going to help your muscle memory learn the kinds of motions you'll be using when playing fast. Also, by training with low stick heights, you're training yourself to play at a lower volume than what comes instinctively. This creates a kind of "headroom" in your technique, which means more control over your playing. See, you don't need more strength, I think you simply need more control over smaller motions when playing. If you play with smaller motions, you'll be more relaxed, you'll gain a feel for how much of your possible strength you're using, and a by-product of this control will be more speed, especially since you use smaller motions to play fast.
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  #15  
Old 06-11-2009, 11:03 PM
jon e rotten jon e rotten is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by brittc89 View Post
Not if you are practicing with bad technique and keep advancing that bad technique till you eventually cant go any further with that bad technique or you hurt yourself. Practicing bad technique just makes you very good at being bad.

Well that certainly explains some things......where were you 20 years ago.
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  #16  
Old 06-11-2009, 11:08 PM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Thanks again for more very helpful advice,

A number of key themes have emerged. One that I get loud and clear is that there is no substitute for putting in the hours. Progress will take time. Another is that forcing will not work. Relaxation is critical - better to be slower and more accurate than faster and tense. Strength, it seems to be almost universally agreed, is not that important at all, and what stamina is needed can be built up simply by working on the rudiments. The last post was particularly helpful. Many thanks for that. Keeping the sticks at a lower height to enhance control. This is also very helpful and gives me much to work on and considerable encouragement. So, I will keep the pushups on hold for a bit, at least as far as doing it with the aim of increasing strength for rudiment speed goes.

All comments much appreciated, but if there is any more input, that would be great to hear too.

James
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  #17  
Old 06-11-2009, 11:11 PM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Just to add to the last post.

Based on what has been commented so far, my take on the percentages for each of the four elements I mentioned might be:

1. Strength - 0%
2. Technique - 20%
3. Talent - 0%
4. Practice (assuming using good technique) - 80%

Seem reasonable?
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  #18  
Old 06-12-2009, 09:25 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

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Originally Posted by jon e rotten View Post
Well that certainly explains some things......where were you 20 years ago.
I was a simple idea in my parents heads, or at least I like to think so, never actually heard the story... hahaha
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Old 06-12-2009, 09:27 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by legobeast View Post
Just to add to the last post.

Based on what has been commented so far, my take on the percentages for each of the four elements I mentioned might be:

1. Strength - 0%
2. Technique - 20%
3. Talent - 0%
4. Practice (assuming using good technique) - 80%

Seem reasonable?
I dont think you can just break it down like that as technique is a by-product of practice. Just leave it at working hard and constantly re-examining what youre working on.
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  #20  
Old 06-12-2009, 02:40 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

When you practice singles do you start with the left hand, then stop and start with the right? There is a little drop off for me when I start with my left for some reason. But if you right handed and playing the hats with your right hand I don't really understand how that hand is slower.

Maybe it's the position of your hats (too close, too far, too high etc), try moving them around a bit and see how it feels.

The only other thing I can think of is look at your practice routine, search the internet for other possibilities, maybe the routine your using is not the best one for you. By the way I am not happy with my singles or doubles either but all you can do is keep practicing because there is no secret to it.
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  #21  
Old 06-12-2009, 03:32 PM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Hi Nhzoso,

Thanks for that addition.

When I practise singles I normally start with the right hand, then move to the left. When I have gone through the whole set of rudiments that I do (about 20) I then go back to repeat three. Singles with both hands, then singles right and singles left.

I do fifty reps of each rudiment at a fixed speed at which I can manage to keep thing reasonably accurate. The aim is, over time, to push the speed up. For most, I am double or more where I started, but for the basic stuff (the three described above), I have hardly moved.

My right hand is faster than my left (I'm right-handed). On my metronome, I am at 50 bpm for right and 45 for left (four hits per beat, with the first beat accented slightly).

So, the right hand IS faster than the left, but my hats speed is still not as fast as it needs to be, and I also get a problem with tensing up after about 2 minutes when riding the hat at higher speeds. I have tried moving the hats around a bit, but that does not make a lot of difference. The main issue is basic need for more speed and more stamina.

I think, like you say, the thing is just to keep practising. I think the routine is not too bad. It's not that regimented, but mixing playing along to songs with using DVDs and doing rudiments a few times a week keeps it interesting. Probably, I need to get to a way to find a higher level of dedication! Need to try to join a band, perhaps, but that seems like a big extra commitment step for a guy with job, kids, blah blah blah! Would be fun, though!

Anyone know of any musicians looking to set up a band in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania!!!!!??? Unlikely, I guess!

Cheers folks for all the advice, but as always, it's great to hear more!

James
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  #22  
Old 06-12-2009, 03:35 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

So glad to know that if I am a talentless weakling, I can still mix it with the best of them, giving enough leg(and hand!)work! Watch out Steve Gadd!
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  #23  
Old 06-12-2009, 04:04 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

tanzania. wow! that's pretty exotic compared to where i live.

about playing singles, it's hard to make them sound even, but to even them out i practice single stroke rolls as triplets. every three strokes i accent with my other hand so i'm playing

RlrLrlRlrLrlRlrLrl...

once i get that sounding even, i take off the accents and just try to play as evenly as i can, still thinking triplets in my head. i think by constantly alternating like that you can eventually clean up an uneven sounding single stroke roll.

i used to have problems tensing up on the hats too, but now when i'm playing a fast song i try to really think about relaxing my right hand. that helps. i also try not to hit so hard on the hats. the hats really cut through the mix anyway so you don't need to hit them all that hard to make a good sound.
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  #24  
Old 06-12-2009, 04:13 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

I personally am not a big believer in the whole "talent" thing. Okay there are some people that are at advantages for drumming but I reckon that as long as you're not seriously physically disabled, there's no reason you can't achieve whatever you want in terms of drumming as long as you stick at it enough. In fact imo the whole idea of "talent" I reckon is pretty elitist tbh "you'll never be as good as me because i'm more talented!" sort of thing. I think strength is quite important in terms of it. I'll give it this:

Strength 30%
Technique 20%
Talent big fat 0%
Practice 50%
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  #25  
Old 06-12-2009, 04:28 PM
Matt-C Matt-C is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

I love this dude, seriously.
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  #26  
Old 06-13-2009, 04:23 PM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Heh Dairyairman,
Thanks for the notes on the single. Will try that out.

Must admit, however, that the consensus on talent being unimportant really surprises me.

There are so many pastimes where I am pretty certain that even if I killed myself with practise, I would never be as good as the 'greats'

People are equal, yeh, but some people are more equal than others, no?!

I have the sense that I am not naturally gifted with drums, but at the same time, I can hear rhythm, and am sure that that helps quite a lot.

Ask ten people to clap a slightly tricky rhythm - some will get it and others will not.

Obviously application is massively important, and I'm sure that you can go a long way on pure application. However, that is not to say that talent will not ultimately separate some from others. I am convinced it will.

Practise may get more marks, but talent deserves more than 0!

No one out there agree with this?!
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  #27  
Old 06-13-2009, 04:57 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Quote:
Originally Posted by legobeast View Post
Heh Dairyairman,
Thanks for the notes on the single. Will try that out.

Must admit, however, that the consensus on talent being unimportant really surprises me.

There are so many pastimes where I am pretty certain that even if I killed myself with practise, I would never be as good as the 'greats'

People are equal, yeh, but some people are more equal than others, no?!

I have the sense that I am not naturally gifted with drums, but at the same time, I can hear rhythm, and am sure that that helps quite a lot.

Ask ten people to clap a slightly tricky rhythm - some will get it and others will not.

Obviously application is massively important, and I'm sure that you can go a long way on pure application. However, that is not to say that talent will not ultimately separate some from others. I am convinced it will.

Practise may get more marks, but talent deserves more than 0!

No one out there agree with this?!
Obviously some guys have a head start in terms of physical gifts, like coordination.

But don't tell yourself you can never achieve what someone else has because unless you want to be Buddy Rich etc. then all you have to do put in the hours of practice.

Some kid probably sees a local act and thinks that drummer is amazingly talented and he could never be as good as him. The local act drummer sees a true professional drummer and thinks he could never be as good as him. The professional drummer sees guys like Gadd, Tony, Elvin and pretty much knows he could never be as good but it doesnt mean he stops practicing and trying to improve.
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  #28  
Old 06-14-2009, 01:28 PM
FunkyLover999 FunkyLover999 is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

One teacher I had used to say to me: fast and wrong is WRONG, slow and right is RIGHT !


I also remember him saying: don´t waste your intelligence in inventing excuses and/or conceptual nonsense trying to explain your lack of work... drumming is basically not a talkative kind of thing.. but a neuro-muscular development of body movements...less speak and more practice.

Speed comes from economy of movements that allows saving energy. Make sure to have the laws of physics working for you and not the opposite way. Steve Smith´s explanation about this issue in "Drumset Technique" might come in handy, Jojo Mayer speaks about this too in his "Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer" DVD.


About "the Greats"... man those people have inmense natural abillity AND practice the hell out; in a way more oriented, focused and disciplined manner than most of us do... also: they were there to hit the spot at the right time in the right place.

I think it´s a combination of preparation and opportunity... so, be prepared !



Regards

Last edited by FunkyLover999; 06-14-2009 at 01:39 PM.
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  #29  
Old 06-15-2009, 03:27 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

The next important thing for you to do is to start working with real musicians. If you are worrying about fast rolls with one hand, you already have more chops than you need, but do you know how to incorporate them into music ??

Dan
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  #30  
Old 06-15-2009, 04:26 AM
Stoney Stoney is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

If you really are worried about speed then I'd suggest practicing your singles or whatever with a metronome. You can hear (and see) your progress this way. Also you'll know if your getting fatigued and slowing down or not. Do a video diary of yourself also if you wish. It can be encouraging.
When I was really anal about all this I would have a chart with bmp speeds that I would tick off when I reached them. Like reaching for a goal. Once I reached it I would aim for the next one. Also don't be too eager to move up to the next one. Play the same bpm but for longer! It's very important to do it in baby steps and possibly you're getting frustrated because you're running before you can walk?
My best advice though would be to not get too bogged down by it and just get out there and play. Speed will come with time!
Also I've never once heard a "one handed roll" that wasn't part of a drum solo. It's pretty pointless really but good luck with it.

Last edited by Stoney; 06-15-2009 at 04:49 AM.
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  #31  
Old 06-15-2009, 04:35 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Three comments.

1. If you don't already have it, then you should get the book "Stick Control." It's been around since the 1930's. It will help a lot.

2. You need a good teacher to evaluate your technique.

3. With regard to talent, I read quotes from Elvin Jones and Tony Williams where they each explained that, for a period of about 8-10 years, they practiced around 8 hours a day. Each of them has an enormous amount of natural "talent," but they still needed to practice like maniacs to get where they got. Think about that.
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  #32  
Old 06-15-2009, 08:41 AM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Guilt Overkill!

Oh no! So much really useful advice and so many areas where I realize I have stuff to put right!

8 hours a day practice for 8-10 years. Well, I will never go there, so not too much guilt about that one - unless I get fired from my job, that is! (now there's a thought!)

Fast and wrong is wrong. Yeh, I am pretty guilty of that one, and definitely force things sometimes. Actually, this is where there metronome goal stuff can be a problem. With some of the rudiments, the internal pressure to get to the next level can be so great, that you end up convincing yourself that you really can manage that new higher level (when in actual fact you cannot, without forcing it).

Play with musicians! Heh, what a suggestion! That's what drums are for, after all, innit? Guilty there again, as I have not been able to do that yet. Not so easy where I live, but I need to make more effort.

Someone raised the point about expectations. That is really so important. I can see that the main drivers for progress will be practise and dedication, but the speed of progress will be in proportion to those. However, it's obviously not possible for all of us to do all the drumming we would really love to, so expectations should be kept in proportion.

Great feedback, however, so thanks to all those who have contributed to this thread. Really helpful.

I'll pass on the updates once I've:

Read Stick Control
Practised 8 hours a day at least for one day of one year
Fixed my metronome chart to the bedroom wall
Replaced the TV with a metronome
Replaced the garden gnome with a TV (in the garden)
Fixed the laws of physics to work for me (at least for when I'm holding drums sticks)
Developed the mental aptitude to think RlrLrlRlrL triplets whilst singing 'Yellow Submarine'
Found some other musicians!

Tongue in cheek, of course! You gotta smile!

Thanks for some great thoughts.

James
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  #33  
Old 06-15-2009, 10:31 AM
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grooveweapon grooveweapon is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Talent: 0% Talent isn't a good way to measure anything really. You can call someone talented at any given concept but it doesn't say anything about how they got there or how long it took them. Some people think that talent means that they have a "path of least resistance" to being successful...but factor in a less rigorous practice schedule, and you could have one less talented guy who practices more, getting better much faster.

Practice: 30-40% Practice is key with gaining speed, but like someone said before, you can't measure practice just by quantity...it is also about quality. If you practice things that are counterproductive to good technique you might be hurting yourself (a lot of people spend the first few years of drumming doing this).

Technique: 30-40% Technique is a product of practice but a pretty important concept associated with speed. A lot of people have a built in basic sense of groove but they lack the technique to play quickly because that comes with time.

Strength: 25% Strength of the appropriate muscles also comes from practice. I'm not talking about being a powerlifter. I'm saying that you have to develop the strength of certain muscles and then you have to maintain them with conditioning...by practicing often.
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Old 06-15-2009, 10:56 AM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

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People are equal, yeh, but some people are more equal than others, no?!
I think Nick Griffin likes to think exactly the same thing. Yeah maybe there are things you wouldn't be so good at in but i think that's probably more to do with the fact that you're not interested in them rather than not being able to do it.
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Old 06-15-2009, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

Legobeast, are your sticks touching your palms during your fastest playing? Real speed comes from the fingers and if your stick is crushed against your palm...perhaps you need to evaluate your technique. When I play fast singles, my stick is almost floating with very little of my skin on the stick, (just fingertips and fulcrum).
This could open up a can of worms. It is possible to play fast with just wrists, but to achieve real speed you need to do 50% of the work and let the rebound do the other 50%. That means allowing the stick to do it's thing without subtracting any energy from the rebound. Fast playing is all about controlling the bounce. I think most different techniques would agree on this point.
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Old 06-15-2009, 04:14 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

i think an overlooked key to speed here is mental.
how come alot of drummers can play singles faster leading with their dominant hand than if they lead with their weak hand? it should be irrelevant right?

jojo mayer says the secret to playing fast is being able to think fast.

relaxation is a big part of it too.

alot of drummers already have the neccesary strength and possibly even the technique to play fast, but they don't have the relaxation and the mental ability to think fast.

the best way to break that is to practice so your mind no longer is in the equation and you are firing on muscle memory.

i reccomend secret weapons of the modern drummer by jojo mayer to anybody who wants to develop their speed.
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:36 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

More good points, except the comparison with Nick Griffin, which I will ignore!

A number of folks have mentioned the Secret Weapons DVD by Jojo Mayer. Mcbike mentioned it, and Larryace raised the issue about letting the sticks do the work, which Jojo makes a big thing out of on his DVD. Actually, I am lucky enough to have that. I didn't really get his ideas on practising the use of the fingers one at a time, and building up to using them altogether. Until, that was, that I somehow just noticed when trying to improve rudiments strokes (having somehow perhaps unconsciously taken in what he had been saying) that it was easier to free up the hand, pivot the stick and use the fingers to push the pivot movement along. Probably, I should try to go back to the DVD and work through that technique more systematically.

Grooveweapon,

Thanks a lot for those assessments. They pretty much sum up many of the contributors views, and those percentage values seem to make a lot of sense. I think that I do personally have a reasonable sense of groove, but see now that the speed thing will take a lot of work. Patience is clearly critical. Worthy of its own separate category, perhaps.

As mentioned, there have been a number of comments on Jojo Mayers DVD. Any other really useful resources for these kinds of things, that are perhaps not too heavy on the basic rudiments (in isolation from kit work and the overall aim of making music). Someone mentioned Stick Control, which has been around a long time. Who's that by?

Any other similarly valuable books/DVDs?

Cheers all. Off to the pad now!
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Old 06-15-2009, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

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More good points, except the comparison with Nick Griffin, which I will ignore!
okay maybe not Nick Griffin but i'm just saying it's quite dangerous to start making sweeping comments like that saying certain people are better than others not through anything in their control.
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Old 06-15-2009, 09:07 PM
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

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Originally Posted by eddiehimself View Post
I think Nick Griffin likes to think exactly the same thing. Yeah maybe there are things you wouldn't be so good at in but i think that's probably more to do with the fact that you're not interested in them rather than not being able to do it.
i totally agree with you! i'll admit there might be a little bit of natural ability involved with drumming, but i really think drumming talent or aptitude has more to do with things like musical passion, being raised in musical environment, starting at a young age, ambition, motivation, and having a willingness to do whatever it takes to get somewhere.

being able to play fast definitely has something to do with technique, but i think there's more to it than that. i think it also has something to do with getting your brain programmed by constant practice and repetition to the point where you can do it quickly without thinking about it. i say that because i can play a reasonably fast single stroke roll with my drum sticks on a pad, but i can also play a fast, clean single stroke roll on a tabletop with my bare hands. or at least i can do that way, way faster and cleaner than any of my non-drumming friends. the technique of playing bare handed is different than stick playing, but i believe you're calling on the same part of your brain to do it, which has been burned in by practice and repetition.
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Old 06-15-2009, 09:18 PM
legobeast legobeast is offline
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Default Re: The Key to Speed

No worries Eddiehimself!

My point is more that people have different talents, and some of those may relate to rhythm and through that drumming. Heh, people are all great. I happen to be an English guy married to a fab African lady, so you could say that Nick Griffin is not exactly a big hero of mine!!!

Still, I totally agree with the overall thrust of the discussion, that the key is dedication. I need to find a lot of it from somewhere, coz there's a lot of catching up to do. Am really keen to do my best, though. Heh, THE DRUMS, what an absolutely cool instrument. If there was a god, I would absolutely thank him that I made the discovery a couple of years ago!

James
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