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  #1  
Old 08-24-2013, 05:43 AM
New Tricks New Tricks is offline
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Default Simple songs that are not so simple

I usually think I can just sit down and play any normal radio pop song just from hearing it on the radio a couple times but yesterday, I got schooled.

Somebody wants me to play John Mayer's "No Such Thing" next week. I said, "no problem" thinking all I had to do was listen to it a couple times. It's a nice tune and I've heard it before.

Crap.

The basic parts are simple enough and it's right there in the grove I like to play and listen to. It's nothing overly complex but damn if it didn't take me 50 times to get the subtle changes down.

Two times, I swear he comes into a measure 1/64 early (like the beginning of the drum part) just to mess with me. It would sound fine without that little touch but I decided to fight with it for an hour, just because.

Also, although it's laid out in typical verse chorus bridge fashion, the meter of the lyrics made it more difficult for me to follow than less sophisticated music.

I think I'm into it about 3 hours now :) I thought drums are supposed to be easy.
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  #2  
Old 08-24-2013, 06:17 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by New Tricks View Post
I thought drums are supposed to be easy.
That's what everybody says. We just make it look easy.
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  #3  
Old 08-24-2013, 06:52 AM
kristy kristy is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

I was actually told that the drums are one of the hardest to learn. After just my second lesson(third lesson is on Tuesday), and trying to get my two left hands and two right feet to work together, I am starting to believe it.
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  #4  
Old 08-24-2013, 07:52 AM
daynnethedrummer daynnethedrummer is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Now by Paramore comes to mind, because Ilan Rubin. That took me a while.
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  #5  
Old 08-24-2013, 08:05 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

I didn't know the song by name, but once I heard it I recognized it. I never listened closely before, but that has some tasty and deceptively simple sounding drumming on it. Awesome groove. I hope to spend some time on it myself. I pick up songs quickly, but I can see needing to devote several hours to that. Maybe more.

Great stuff!
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  #6  
Old 08-24-2013, 08:20 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Here's a much different take on "No Such Thing." Keith Carlock on drums. Of course he works his own magic on it, but a lot of the little things from the studio version are no longer there. It's a cool interpretation that shows how much you can do with a "simple" song.

http://youtu.be/Gm55rHqgPo4
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  #7  
Old 08-24-2013, 11:51 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Cool song. I had forgotten all about that one. It's definitely a song I'd have to sit down with for awhile and learn. There's a lot to remember with the different beat changes, but nothing is out of reach. I hear that intro you're talking about. it sounds like he comes in with a bark on the hi-hats right before the downbeat.
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  #8  
Old 08-24-2013, 03:23 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

I had no idea Keith played with JM. I really like his take on, what I've always thought, was a great song.
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  #9  
Old 08-24-2013, 06:43 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Quote:
Originally Posted by New Tricks View Post
I usually think I can just sit down and play any normal radio pop song just from hearing it on the radio a couple times but yesterday, I got schooled.

Somebody wants me to play John Mayer's "No Such Thing" next week. I said, "no problem" thinking all I had to do was listen to it a couple times. It's a nice tune and I've heard it before.

Crap.

The basic parts are simple enough and it's right there in the grove I like to play and listen to. It's nothing overly complex but damn if it didn't take me 50 times to get the subtle changes down.

Two times, I swear he comes into a measure 1/64 early (like the beginning of the drum part) just to mess with me. It would sound fine without that little touch but I decided to fight with it for an hour, just because.

Also, although it's laid out in typical verse chorus bridge fashion, the meter of the lyrics made it more difficult for me to follow than less sophisticated music.

I think I'm into it about 3 hours now :) I thought drums are supposed to be easy.
Most that take up the instrument,feel that way after a time,or sooner than they think

Drums ARE easy at first..a simple 4 on the floor,can be learned sometimes in hours,and a fill here and there takes a little more time to learn, and soon, you can fudge lots of "simple" rock tunes.

Then ...you hit a wall,and everything that's not the above,becomes more difficult.

Feel ,is the hardest thing to develop,and Steve Jordan and Keith Carlock,have that in spades...which is why they work with Mayer so much.

Steve B
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  #10  
Old 08-24-2013, 07:52 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Seven Days by Sting sounds simple. That's Vinnie for you, though...
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  #11  
Old 08-24-2013, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Katatonia's newer stuff. To me it always sounded simple, but took me a lot longer than expected to learn a lot of their stuff.
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  #12  
Old 08-24-2013, 08:59 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Shoot To Thrill AC DC not so easy as it sounds
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  #13  
Old 08-24-2013, 09:03 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

+1 for Shoot to Thrill.
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  #14  
Old 08-24-2013, 09:10 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by BacteriumFendYoke View Post
Seven Days by Sting sounds simple. That's Vinnie for you, though...
+1.Duncan..One of my all time fav Sting tunes,and Vinny just makes it look so deceptively easy.

That man is the jet engine that makes that tune just groove.Talk about .....feel

Steve B
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  #15  
Old 08-25-2013, 12:15 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

A lot of stuff Ringo did would qualify
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  #16  
Old 08-25-2013, 02:35 AM
Bonzobilly Bonzobilly is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Barracuda by Heart. Mike Derosiers (spelling?). At first it sounds like a great straight ahead driving rock groove. However, the feel and little things he adds are just not easy to duplicate.
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  #17  
Old 08-25-2013, 02:52 AM
thunderstruck thunderstruck is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

+2 for Shoot to Thrill.

Last edited by thunderstruck; 08-29-2013 at 02:47 AM.
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  #18  
Old 08-25-2013, 10:58 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Old school ... Mr Big by Free, Simon Kirke on drums. Tempo control. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_FhCilozomo
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  #19  
Old 08-25-2013, 12:37 PM
Brian Brian is online now
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

One of my personal favorite drummers Jim Gordon has plenty of material with "simple" drumming that is not easy to perfect. His funky drummer variation would be up there on my list.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Aw7Jai7peM
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  #20  
Old 08-25-2013, 08:31 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
A lot of stuff Ringo did would qualify
Exactly what I was thinking. A lot of The Beatles' stuff is easy enough to play but if you really want to nail the parts and the feel of Ringo, you have to do your homework.
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  #21  
Old 08-25-2013, 09:05 PM
StaggerLee StaggerLee is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Well as far as a song that I first listened to and thought it would be easy and then when trying it turned out to be fucking hard? Nightwish-Song of myself. It's a simple beat, most of the song is very basic, but playing in a different time signature to the rest of the band takes a lot of concentration to me. I have managed to perform it live (with a quick cover up of an extra beat in a bar) but not without a month of solid practicing.
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  #22  
Old 08-25-2013, 11:05 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

The "1/64th " parts were simply 1/8 notes and not as tough as I was making them out to be.

Like several suggested, once you get the feel, everything is a simple four count.

I also recorded the backing synth/keyboard parts and can trigger them on my SPD. I now officially dig this song. Next step, backing vocals.

I don't know how many hours I have into this thing but, once I got over the hump, I've enjoyed every minute of it.

Music has turned from a hobby into a passion for me and I'm understanding it way more than I did in my youth.
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  #23  
Old 08-26-2013, 04:44 PM
tamadrm tamadrm is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by Anon La Ply View Post
Old school ... Mr Big by Free, Simon Kirke on drums. Tempo control. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_FhCilozomo
Simon Kirke........there's a guy who dosen't get nearly enough credit.Big pocket.

Steve B
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  #24  
Old 08-26-2013, 05:22 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Simple songs and/or simple rhythms are not simple at all... I heard so many times that new beginners should play AC/DC stuff because technically it's very simple....

You might have the motion and mechanical parts right, but the song doesn't happen, it requires a lot of knowledge and experience to get it grooving.

So the OP's right, simple songs are not so simple...
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  #25  
Old 08-26-2013, 05:35 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Everything Zeppelin did comes to mind with this. But not necessarily the drum parts.. Take something like Kashmir, or Whole Lotta Love, for instance. Relatively simple riff, drum parts, key, etc.. deceptively difficult to cover. The form is so long, and there are different bridges in different places.. Ah! The arrangements are what make a lot of Zeppelin's tunes so hard, and that not something you really think about when gauging the difficultly of a piece.
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  #26  
Old 08-26-2013, 06:57 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

How about simple songs that are simple to play? Seven Nation Army anyone? I'd say that's simple to play.
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Old 08-26-2013, 07:04 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

The intro to "Take It Easy" by The Eagles. It's worth the time to learn it correctly. Sounds like Don Henley stumbles on the intro but it's all in time.
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  #28  
Old 08-26-2013, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Almost any simple song with Jim Keltner on drums...

Jim played on the original version of John Hiatt's "Memphis in the Meantime" - it's such a simple, groovy little song and I muff it every time.
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  #29  
Old 08-27-2013, 03:23 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Rosanna - Toto

Seems like a breeze when your air drumming on your steering wheel.
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  #30  
Old 08-27-2013, 03:59 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
How about simple songs that are simple to play? Seven Nation Army anyone? I'd say that's simple to play.
I don't believe in "easy" songs. If a song is easy then you're (generic "you", not you, Larry) not playing with passion or commitment. JMO

I realise this could be more of a garage than pro view because I've never had to play Brown Eyed Girl 100 x
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Old 08-27-2013, 04:43 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by Mad About Drums View Post
Simple songs and/or simple rhythms are not simple at all... I heard so many times that new beginners should play AC/DC stuff because technically it's very simple....
Speaking as a beginner, my discovery du jour is that a lot of songs that have a simple drum rhythm are made interesting by the drummer doing something different in just 1 bar of the song. F'rinstance where a cymbal crash might be on beat 1 for most of the song, it might be added on beat 4 of the preceding bar just once in the song.

Finding these little tricks is fun for this noob, and getting it right to "interrupt the program" and play the exception is very satisfying...using the conscious mind to interrupt the subconscious to try and get the nuances right.
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  #32  
Old 08-27-2013, 05:11 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

How about Lay Down Sally? Sounds simple enough. Just listen to that bass drum though. So subtle, yet so hard to master in that beat. IMHO, of course.
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  #33  
Old 08-27-2013, 07:01 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Saw Mayer live recently and the thing I came away with was the guy's time is just scary. Squares is full of him coming in with vocal lines in odd places but dead on time. And things like that half time break or the bar of two in Wonderland. This is what makes music interesting. And amateur cover bands sound amateur. Kudos for putting in the effort to get it right. Once you have that, you can do your thing over it, but musicians will recognize that you got the pickups and things in the right groove. And to the punters it will just somehow feel better. Like the song is more familiar and enjoyable.
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  #34  
Old 08-27-2013, 03:05 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by oldrockdrummer View Post
Shoot To Thrill AC DC not so easy as it sounds
How about anything by AC/DC? Sure, it's mostly just boom-chick-book-chick. But when it's not, it's really important. You don't realize how many cymbal hits have to be in just the right spot until you actually try to play it.
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  #35  
Old 08-27-2013, 04:08 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

Anything with John JR Robinson. Simple grooves, yes. However, the way he places the backbeat, relative to the downbeat of the bass drum and ties it together with the hi-hat, is pure beat craftsmanship. His approach is basically that: The bass drum is what defines the time...NOT the hi-hat or ride cymbal, in a rock or disco context. You play the downbeat of the 1 and 3 (or whatever bass drum groove) exactly ON the beat. You lay the backbeat down a few miliseconds behind the 2 and 4. The key is, the hi-hat pattern ties the two together. So it flows between the downbeat of the bass drum and the layed back backbeat. Sounds complicated for a simple dance beat but that's the reason guys like him, Jeff Porcaro, Vinnie, Curt Bisquera and Jim Keltner were/are hired to replace drum machines.
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  #36  
Old 08-28-2013, 06:47 AM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

The most deceptive JR song I can think of is Ain't Nobody. There's just the slightest hitch after the 2 that goes though the whole song. I've only seen a couple drummers actually get this and get the feel of it right. Most folks fixate on the tom fills in the bridge. But those are secondary to the groove.
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  #37  
Old 08-28-2013, 08:15 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by CreeplyTuna View Post
Katatonia's newer stuff. To me it always sounded simple, but took me a lot longer than expected to learn a lot of their stuff.
Lethean...what a fun part..


I gotta note that many times when I have mastered a subtlty in a simple sounding song, the rest of the band I am playing with just glossed it over with some straight time knock off...and my playing didn't mesh.

Be sure to agree with the other band members on the interpretation of the song you will be pursuing.
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  #38  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:56 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by Anon La Ply View Post
I don't believe in "easy" songs. If a song is easy then you're (generic "you", not you, Larry) not playing with passion or commitment. JMO
I share your view on this.

"One Headlight" will be my contribution to this thread. There isn't even a cymbal crash on it, but man does it rip. Matt C is the man!
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  #39  
Old 08-28-2013, 10:02 PM
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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I share your view on this.

"One Headlight" will be my contribution to this thread. There isn't even a cymbal crash on it, but man does it rip. Matt C is the man!
I will second "One Headlight." Fantastic example.
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  #40  
Old 08-28-2013, 10:37 PM
New Tricks New Tricks is offline
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Default Re: Simple songs that are not so simple

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Originally Posted by Anon La Ply View Post
I don't believe in "easy" songs. If a song is easy then you're (generic "you", not you, Larry) not playing with passion or commitment. JMO

I love it when a song becomes easy because I can enjoy the music more when I can actually listen to the whole song instead of concentrating on my specific part. I think I also appear more comfortable and that is a good look for any performer.
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