Crashing on the 1

topgun2021

Gold Member
I like to pretend I am the coolest kat around and crash on the 'e' of 1 sometimes when entering a new section when playing with my quintet.
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
I crash wherever and whenever it makes sense. I probably crash way more than most other drummers, but I love the sounds and colors of cymbals and I find ways to blend the sound into the rest of the band without sounding obnoxious or overbearing.
 

TTNW

Pioneer Member
I crash on the 1 quite a bit. A lot of the songs we play call for it.

I've been working on separating my right foot and right hand when I do this so that I am not playing a bass note with the crash on the one. Or at least not all the time.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
There's crashing on the one and crashing on the one.

Sometimes it's good to my ear, sometimes it just creates unnecessary clutter. I don't want to hear a crash on the one at every transition and after every fill - that's formulaic IMO.

Crashes are one of the more potent weapons in a drummer's arsenal and can really give a song a lift if used in the right places. If overused they can quickly create ear fatigue. I see a crash as a climax. If you climax all the time when what worth is a climax? (think busman's holiday). It depends on the genre too.

In most songs I try to get away with the minimum number of crashes. I also like playing small crashes where I don't open the cymbal out fully, which are less about intensity than colour.
 

aydee

Platinum Member
Thanks guys, this was an open ended question with lots of different angles. Was just wondering how people felt in general.

The reason I got thinking about it was that a guitar player was asking me to define the 1 very clearly last week, almost implying that I had to keep the rhythmic framework very fundamental and drain it of any nuance or expression.

I was 'suggesting' the 1 by just opening the hats which sounded good to me, and crashing only on the section or chorus changes but that didn't work for him and he was gesturing wildly for me to bang the 1 out every 8 measures.

Frankly, I find that irritating, because I come from a school of thought where time keeping and and knowing the tune is everyone's business and the drummer isn't just a horse cart for everyone to jump on and do their thing. Well, it is in a sense but I'm ready to kill people who abuse that privilege. : )

...

are you referring to the taboo about crashing on the 1 for jazz?
Not really, because i wasn't playing jazz but in a twisted kind of way, yes DM.
Its not so much the taboo part of it but more about keeping certain sections fluid and flowing. Sometimes you just want to soften the definitions so that you start to feel the music in broader strokes.. kinda like drawing very lightly with a pencil rather than digging the point into paper.

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MikeM

Platinum Member
My band has a song where the snare is hitting all the quarters thru the verses, but with the standard 2 and 4 backbeats on the choruses. I like going back to the verse (from a chorus) with a typical fill, but that ends with a big crash on the 4, so that when the 1 comes around, I'm already back to my snare on the quarters and the crash is just fading.

It's amazing how such a simple little trick can throw the other muso's. I was in another band where I had the opportunity to use the same trick and in both cases we had to stop so I could explain what was going on and that I wasn't changing time signatures or anything. It's not that it's that tricky a maneuver, but that it required an explanation since everyone's so trained to expect the big crash on 1. If they hear it anywhere else, they automatically assume they lost track of the 1 and they just reset to that crash.

Kind of amusing.
 
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Abhishek

Member
My band has a song where the snare is hitting all the quarters thru the verses, but with the standard 2 and 4 backbeats on the choruses. I like going back to the verse (from a chorus) with a typical fill, but that ends with a big crash on the 4, so that when the 1 comes around, I'm already back to my snare on the quarters and the crash is just fading.

It's amazing how such a simple little trick can throw the other muso's. I was in another band where I had the opportunity to use the same trick and in both cases we had to stop so I could explain what was going on and that I wasn't changing time signatures or anything. It's not that it's that tricky a maneuver, but that it required an explanation since everyone's so trained to expect the big crash on 1. If they hear it anywhere else, they automatically assume they lost track of the 1 and they just reset to that crash.

Kind of amusing.
Great story, and a lovely little trick
 

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
Frankly, I find that irritating, because I come from a school of thought where time keeping and and knowing the tune is everyone's business and the drummer isn't just a horse cart for everyone to jump on and do their thing.
I agree. Unfortunately sometimes musicians don't really feel or care about the 8 measure phrases, which is a shame...
 

aydee

Platinum Member
I agree. Unfortunately sometimes musicians don't really feel or care about the 8 measure phrases, which is a shame...
Yup! Picking up from the melody/rhythm thread, why should'nt a chord progression or a melodic phrase be the pulse that everyone holds on to?
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
... a guitar player was asking me to define the 1 very clearly last week, almost implying that I had to keep the rhythmic framework very fundamental and drain it of any nuance or expression.

I was 'suggesting' the 1 by just opening the hats which sounded good to me, and crashing only on the section or chorus changes but that didn't work for him and he was gesturing wildly for me to bang the 1 out every 8 measures.
Abe, was the guitarist playing power chords on the one and looking for reinforcement?
 

aydee

Platinum Member
Abe, was the guitarist playing power chords on the one and looking for reinforcement?
No Pol, it wasn't about dynamics, it was about zooming in on the GPS.

He's someone who gets lost and caught up in his own playing. He is a good player, so I find that hard to excuse.. it wasn't like I was trying to trip him up or invert anything so that it felt upside down or wierd either..

...Lazy ears? Is that a good description of what was going on?.. maybe

...
 

Andy

Administrator
Staff member
Yup! Picking up from the melody/rhythm thread, why should'nt a chord progression or a melodic phrase be the pulse that everyone holds on to?
I'm going through a bit of that crap with my bass player right now. The expectation is always that the drummer must maintain the "expected" path to allow the other musos to gyrate around a predictable structure. Although that's a good thing most of the time, it makes for quite boring listening. The drummer should be afforded equal opportunity to embelish by accenting around the chord progression without the other musos thinking he's lost the plot.
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
No Pol, it wasn't about dynamics, it was about zooming in on the GPS.

He's someone who gets lost and caught up in his own playing. He is a good player, so I find that hard to excuse.. it wasn't like I was trying to trip him up or invert anything so that it felt upside down or weird either..

...Lazy ears? Is that a good description of what was going on?.. maybe

...
By "good player" I take it you mean "plays some cool stuff". Lazy ears is a nice expression. It sounds like he was listening to his playing rather than the band as a whole.

I doubt that the slight improvement in nuance he could gain from that self-focus would be worth it for a guitarist . In a vocalist, maybe, but not guitar unless it's Jeff Beck playing Cause We Ended As Lovers, which is really vocals anyway.

This just sounds like selfishness to me; his ears are lazy because he's not interested. Either that or he's insecure and feels like if his attention is diverted from his own thing for a second everything will go to hell.

Sack 'im! :)
 

aydee

Platinum Member
I'm going through a bit of that crap with my bass player right now. The expectation is always that the drummer must maintain the "expected" path to allow the other musos to gyrate around a predictable structure. Although that's a good thing most of the time, it makes for quite boring listening. The drummer should be afforded equal opportunity to embelish by accenting around the chord progression without the other musos thinking he's lost the plot.
Exactly! Thats my point! Why is the drummer the appointed beast of burden?

Some of the hippest grooves ever played in any genre of music are so hip and so groovy because the bass players, the guitarists, keyboard players, horns etc are all creating the rhythm. Granted the drummer's role here is somewhat primary but drummer=rhythm is BS.

I while back I saw a great Senegalese bassist, Mamadau Ba ( plays with Leni Stern ) sit in with a very average drummer in a bar. Instantly, the drummer magically transformed into a thing of beauty, and the music grooved like crazy.

...
 

Pollyanna

Platinum Member
Oh come now, what's with this militant drummers' union stuff?

Get back in yer box, you rebels, and play your four! You can't fight city hall ...
 

Dedworx

Senior Member
i think the situation dictates to crash or not to crash and where. it definately is a very open ended question. i just do what i'm told.

i can understand though it would suck to be limited by someone else's time feel weaknesses and be forced into compensating rather than that person deal with the issue.
 

aydee

Platinum Member
i think the situation dictates to crash or not to crash and where.
Yea, DW but each musical situation can have infinite interpretations. Who decides?...( easy answer- The music- and you ) .

I just do what i'm told.
By whom? I hope whoever is telling you is a greater more experienced musician than yourself, and someone you can learn something from hopefully. If not, then why play what a guitarist or a pianist tells you to play. Who made them captain o' da drums?

it would suck to be limited by someone else's time feel weaknesses
or even just someone else's time feel..

and be forced into compensating rather than that person deal with the issue.
I agree.Thats the part I hate..groove on behalf of someone else. Its like using someone else toothbrush. ewww.

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PS- just checked out your hip hop/funk linear groove on your channel. I just hope nobodys telling you what to do, cause you're doing it just fine, and probably better than them ! : )
 
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