Applying Free-Playing to music


Senior Member
Took me a while to come up with a lousy title, but anyways I just want to ask about practicing the drums with no goal in mind and simply letting whatever beat you have in you come out, or what I like to call Free-Playing. Okay lol I'm terrible at labeling stuff, but i hope you understand what i mean :) Basically I mean when you have fun and randomly jam on the drums.

Free-Playing occurs for me whenever I get home from high school and want to let off some steam. I have noticed that, by simply not caring about what i play and if it is in time or "correct", I can come up with some really cool beats and fills. Thing is, my moment of creativity expires when I actually have to think about keeping time and sticking to a song, like when i play with my school's Jazz Band.

I really want to transition this energy and creativity to when it matters and my focus is not on having fun but playing musically. Can anyone give me suggestions/ideas/advice on how you learned how to express yourself in music while also playing in time with a band? The drums feel so restricting sometimes, but so free when I play on my own.


Silver Member
whatever sparks your creativity ...roll with it....

dont worry about rules....or guidelines......just play

all you need to do is expand your vocabulary and you will be fine....


Platinum Member
I think what you call "free playing", I call rockin'/jamming out.

Simply put, you couldn't stop me from doing so if you tried. Rudiments and learning songs is fine and good, but I gotta jam, and I gotta jam often. I have too many beats goin through my head all day to just let them clog up my head. :p

As far as applying that kinda "freedom" to music, it really depends on the music. Some styles really let the drummer stretch out and have fun, while others are more demanding of solid consistent drum parts.


Senior Member
Try joining a rock band or at least get some buddies together to jam with. Playing in time with the school band will be very different from playing in time with a rock band. I don't wanna say that rock bands get out of time, but well they do. But it's not a bad thing there's just a natural slow down and speed up, but as long as you are all playing in time with each other it doesn't matter that much. I think you'll feel a lot less restricted when you are just jamming with your friends or the band and you don't have to constantly worry about playing the "correct" way, or playing the song exactly how it is supposed to go. I don't think about timing at all when I jam with my friends, I don't go out of time, but I can just play with the music and feed off the energy of how the song is going.