Choosing which technique.

\o/

Senior Member
Hi, i only have a single bass pedal, and would like to learn to be at least 95% efficient with it (eg, learn to play most of what i need to with it).

I just got my head round heel toe, but this seems to be best for playing triplets and what not. What would you recommend the best technique for playing fast straight 16th notes with a single pedal without burying the beater? At the moment i'm thinking the flat footed technique would probably be the best, but would like your advice. Cheers.
 

Toby_Jackson

Senior Member
Flat-foot can be really quite powerful, but you need some really well-developed legs (muscles, tendons, everything) - it can be easy to cause stress-injuries if you go too fast, too soon. I'd be wary of it until you've developed your standard thigh and ankle motions too a pretty high degree.

My advice here would be to simply work on finding the sweet spot on the pedal and trying to control a fast, bounce-type stroke from the ankle. You're trying to get a feel for how the beater rebounds off of your bass drum head - if you can really get a handle on it then you can execute many fast, loud, non-buyring bass drum strokes in a row and still maintain a relaxed approach in your technique (so no worries about over-stressing your body).
 

\o/

Senior Member
Flat-foot can be really quite powerful, but you need some really well-developed legs (muscles, tendons, everything) - it can be easy to cause stress-injuries if you go too fast, too soon. I'd be wary of it until you've developed your standard thigh and ankle motions too a pretty high degree.

My advice here would be to simply work on finding the sweet spot on the pedal and trying to control a fast, bounce-type stroke from the ankle. You're trying to get a feel for how the beater rebounds off of your bass drum head - if you can really get a handle on it then you can execute many fast, loud, non-buyring bass drum strokes in a row and still maintain a relaxed approach in your technique (so no worries about over-stressing your body).
Excellent advice, especially in regards to the rebound. I struggled with heel toe but today i started with my heel up, toes down, and then i sort of take the pressure off my toes whilst simultaneously pressing the middle of my foot, and the rebound takes care of the stroke. Quite a pivotal moment for me in my young drumming career. It just got me thinking about the best technique to do straight 16ths with, as i'll probably develop heel-toe now so i can do some mean fills/beats with it, and don't want to be lagging behind with the standard fast stuff. Although speed is pretty much out of the question for now until i become more dextrous. Cheers matey.
 

Arky

Platinum Member
Just out of curiosity - which tempos are you talking of? The really fast guys can do up to 140 bpm 16th notes single foot with heel up, single foot (I max out at about 125-130/strong foot). I also practice heel-toe, going for continuous single foot 8th/16th notes, but continuous single-fot doubles are a bit harder. I've seen Tim Waterman doing continuous heel-toe 8th/16th notes veeery fast - it can be done.
 
B

BigSteve

Guest
\o/, you might check out Matt Ritter's Unburying the Beater DVD. He goes over a lot of good bass drum technique. I used to play soley heel down, from Matt's DVD I was able to pick up a lot of good technique and am still working through all the suggestions. I've found it pretty useful.
 

Toby_Jackson

Senior Member
Matt's DVD is great, I'll second that one.

Back to the OP: heel-toe is great, it definitely has it's uses (many of which I apply myself), but it's also somewhat unweildy in the sense that it's very difficult to produce even sounding tones if you're playing long runs. I don't hesitate to use it for doubles, triples or quads - but as a "one-footed roll," it's quite the challenge to become solid with it (nothing against trying it though, it will definitely get your doubles smokin' if nothing else).
 
Top