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  #41  
Old 09-07-2011, 12:15 PM
mediocrefunkybeat
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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Originally Posted by toddbishop View Post
A lick is a preconceived technical passage; a fill is a musical function you might use it for. It would be pretty hard to play music without learning any borrowed ideas at all- the question is more about what you do with them.

Here's something that's helpful.
Good video. I think he's got it basically right; especially the part about learning fewer phrases and manipulating them more.

That's the issue here. If I'm listening to a player and I hear them playing something that a hundred other drummers have played then I totally switch off. That's why I really cannot watch any 'Gospel Chops' videos and it's why Tony Royster Jr's solo on Letterman bored me to tears. I've seen it before by dozens of other players. When I hear something being played that I haven't heard before or something that I have heard being presented in an entirely new context, then I find that more interesting.

The deeper issue is having the understanding to manipulate what you've heard before and make it something new.

We can take Mozart's Requiem as an example (mainly because I was listening to it yesterday). There is an enormous debate about how much of it Mozart actually completed. He died before it was finished and other composers filled in the sketches 'in the style of Mozart'. Now the result is a piece of music that sounds an awful lot like Mozart - albeit later Mozart. The interesting part is that you can't discern between the two if you're listening casually. This piece was completed to claim a commission but you have to ask yourself about the other composers. What artistic value was there for them in completing the piece by simply copying Mozart? Well, the answer is none whatsoever - art wasn't the point here but their work is still artistically vapid.

Mozart's Requiem is a great piece of music - but only because it was consistent with a man that was a genius. Because it was really Mozart's after all, even though other composers often wrote large parts of it.

So when you just 'copy' a lick - like a Bonham triplet bass drum part or a Peart run down the toms verbatim, all you're doing is talking in somebody else's language. That's fine in a cover band (and exactly what the audience want to hear) but when it comes to improvising your own material it's important that - to be a good player - you actually sound like yourself, otherwise you just become a forgettable and vapid clone. The trick is learning the vocabulary, learning the material and then learning to manipulate it in such a way that it's abstracted and ultimately your part and that's why I take issue with lazy, verbatim learning of licks as 'practice'. That's not development; it's just backward-looking mimicry and it's why there are a hundred drummers that sound like John Bonham, but only one John Bonham.

Brian Blade must've listened to a LOT of Tony Williams. But you don't see him playing Tony William's licks. Brian Blade understands Tony Williams (and a thousand other players) and that's the difference.

Last edited by mediocrefunkybeat; 09-07-2011 at 12:41 PM.
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  #42  
Old 09-07-2011, 12:31 PM
john007007 john007007 is offline
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

hi friend !
To gain more, we should try much more better than before.
thank u



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  #43  
Old 09-07-2011, 12:47 PM
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

Wow, thanks john007007, now all of my problems are solved!
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  #44  
Old 09-07-2011, 12:54 PM
mediocrefunkybeat
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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hi friend !
To gain more, we should try much more better than before.
thank u



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  #45  
Old 09-07-2011, 01:12 PM
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

I think licks are cool once a vocabulary and the proper amount of listening has set in, but as a ground level vehicle in of itself I just don't see it. Imo they're a much different thing than rudiments which make the necessary fluidity possible for proper communication, in that they create the dialogue that comes directly from you. Licks on the other hand are someone else's extracted conversation, and at times the out of context extraction devalues the motif's (a better word) original intention unless the rudimental framework is established first and foremost. There's nothing worse than hearing junk, junk, noise, out of context noise, lick, noise, junk attempting to set up out of context lick, lick, noise etc...and we all know this is happening because far too many guys use licks as a shortcut and not the keys to a great player's door as I believe they are best intended.

I love the Philly lick for example and wear it out sometimes. But I never thought about using it until I had already at least tried to internalize Philly Joe Jones's playing. Otherwise the whole thing would be a big mess and a poor tribute besides.
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  #46  
Old 09-07-2011, 01:30 PM
mediocrefunkybeat
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

Thank you for saying that much better than I can, Matt!
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  #47  
Old 09-07-2011, 02:58 PM
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Pollyanna Pollyanna is offline
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

Not fair Duncan - now you're bringing in the big guns :)

I don't (can't) dispute what you and Matt are saying but it depends on what you aspire to do. If you aim to play at a Brian Blade level, then I can't even imagine the homework needed. If you're just into playing locally, then licks are fun to learn and come in handy ... but yeah, in the right places and adapted to fit.

Have to agree about the the big RLFF lick. It was impressive when Cozy Powell was doing it (esp with the strobes and the 1812 Overture) but now it's been heard so much that experienced listeners just get bored and switch off. There's a middle ground out there ...
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  #48  
Old 09-07-2011, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

I might be a bit late to the party here but I amused that people consider RLFF a lick. Aren't patterns like RLF, FFRL and RFF just as essential to the modern drummer as the standard rudiments?
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  #49  
Old 09-07-2011, 04:54 PM
mediocrefunkybeat
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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I might be a bit late to the party here but I amused that people consider RLFF a lick. Aren't patterns like RLF, FFRL and RFF just as essential to the modern drummer as the standard rudiments?
Yes, they are but I was talking about a specific implementation of that pattern - a lick.
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  #50  
Old 09-07-2011, 06:35 PM
Duracell Duracell is offline
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
Yes, they are but I was talking about a specific implementation of that pattern - a lick.
Ah sorry! My bad then. *takes an honorable bow*
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  #51  
Old 09-08-2011, 03:41 AM
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0neyellowdrum 0neyellowdrum is offline
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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mattsmith;888061]I think licks are cool once a vocabulary and the proper amount of listening has set in, but as a ground level vehicle in of itself I just don't see it.
I guess I may be splitting hairs, here, but I don't think the OP was going to spend all his time on licks. I don't know what a proper amount of time is for him. I think I do for me.
I remember my early lessons on a number of instruments and I would have given up on all if all I practiced was scales or rudiments. I ( and I think most) needed some songs to play that incorporated the rudiments I was practicing. As I developed I would try to learn the licks within the song to help me develop the sense of its belonging (or not) within the song. It helped me with my musicality.
I would never assume it was an end all be all and I do believe it is beneficial as a ground level vehicle but, as you state, not in of itself.

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Imo they're a much different thing than rudiments which make the necessary fluidity possible for proper communication, in that they create the dialogue that comes directly from you.
They are different because they are a grouping of rudiments. Still takes the same repetition for muscle memory and internalization to play fluidly/ effortlessly.

I think there is a great value in learning licks and, for me, reinforces my rudiments. Rudiments can be static yet putting them into licks (others or mine own) gives them some life.
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  #52  
Old 09-08-2011, 04:32 AM
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daredrummer daredrummer is offline
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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Originally Posted by Numberless View Post
The issue here is that there's a new generation of players, that in the youtube era, are obsessed with learning and pounding out lick after regurgitated lick, go to any gospel player youtube vid and you'll find a bunch of people "Yo man what's the sticking at 1:05" "Hey man can you explain what you're doing at 3:08". It seems all they're interested is the instant gratification that the lick provides, not the feel, atmosphere or musicality of the playing.

In this context, just learning the lick for the sake of learning it, there's really no musical growth, all you're doing is repeating a pattern someone else already did.

In an ideal context, you would listen to your favorite drummers, you would learn some of their licks, you see how they use them, how they serve the music, why are they there, and then you would learn them and make them your own, eventually giving you the creativity to make up your own licks.

Once in a while, you'll hear a super cool lick that you just gotta know, that's fine, go for it, but remember to not just learn it, you gotta take it farther than that, make it your own.

And lick is pretty much the same as a fill, except fills usually signal the beginning or end of a section, licks can be little things thrown anywhere.
Thank you Numberless, that was excellent and I wholeheartedly agree!

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Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
Qualify: Licks are sought by the learner as verbatim. E.g. 'What's Tony's sticking there?'. Nobody ever seems to ask 'Why did Tony introduce the polymeter?' and that is actually the important question in understanding the music. Music is understanding, not mechanics. Mechanics can contribute to understanding but they are not the product.
Brilliant Duncan! I really like that!
Very convincing, I completely agree.
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  #53  
Old 09-08-2011, 02:03 PM
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

I'm in a similar position too. I do anywhere between 5-8 hours a day-ish. I divide my time between pad, which i always do first so i'm nice and warmed up, and kit. I concentrate on rudiments and single/double/triple stroke roll, the paradiddles and flams on the pad. I then move to the kit to practice hi hat patterns, bass pedal exercises and beats before moving onto fills. Then i spend a good 45 mins practising dynamics.

After this i spend the entire rest of the time printing off score and practising my reading, or i make up my own scores, without listening to them, and then try to play them sight-read at ridiculously slow tempo's - i can then go back to each section and play it (on commercially available scoring software) to see whether i got it right. When reading i always try to throw many components into the score, like dynamics, tempo changes, time sig changes and coda's. I know from reading traditional score that sometimes it's not about being able to play but it's about being able to play fluently whilst taking in everything the score says, and not overlooking anything.

Anyway, just my thoughts =)
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  #54  
Old 09-10-2011, 05:28 PM
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burn-4 burn-4 is offline
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Default Re: What to practice for the most gains?

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Originally Posted by mediocrefunkybeat View Post
Yes, they are but I was talking about a specific implementation of that pattern - a lick.
nail on the head!
It's ok i think to use a technique learned i.e. RLFF but in your own context and with your own orchestration/ phrasing rather than just copying note for note what another player does
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