Drumming Lessons for beginner - jazz drumming versus basic rock style


New member
Hey guys,

I'm about to embark on learning the drums! I've been playing guitar / bass for a long time and I have always fantasized about being able to play drums! I play mostly reggae and blues and a bit of psych rock. I wanting to learn the jazzy style of drumming that is found in reggae and I'm on the hunt for a drumming instructor.

My question is: Should I start out with a Jazz drum instructor or would I need to start with a more basic drumming style instructor and build up to that style eventually. There are so many drumming instructors in my area and I really want the best possible start to my drumming endeavours.

Please excuse if this sounds like a silly question. I'm inclined to hunt out a Jazz drummer straight away but I fear that they might be more expensive or expect me to already have basic skills (which I don't).

Thanks for any feedback,


Platinum Member
You will find that many drum teachers will teach the introductory to Jazz/Pop/Latin quite well. I'm a pop drummer and my teacher was a classically trained latin/jazz drummer that tours with BattleCross. The genre isn't typically an issue early on, and by the time it is, you typically have a better foundation when looking for the next teacher.

Talk to an instructor, let them know what your goals are. See if you can jive.
I'd look for a Jazz drummer straight away if that's what you want to learn. Don't worry about your skills - teachers are used to instructing beginners and you already have a strong background in music. No idea if they are more expensive where you live, but I'd rather take less lessons from somebody who knows how to get you where you want to be as a player.


Silver Member
I wanting to learn the jazzy style of drumming that is found in reggae
I would like to explore this statement a little more. Jazz and Reggae are really different styles! With very different feels and phrasing.
Can you say more about what you want to learn? [ The teacher you choose will ask you this too :) so it's worth getting clear ]

Do you mean you like that 'relaxed but relentless/hypnotic' feel (wow, my poor description doesn't do it justice - see how difficult it is to describe it, haha) that you hear from reggae? The one-drop beat? Or the fills? Maybe there's a song that you want to learn to play that will describe it?


Platinum Member
If it means anything, I'm a metal drummer who studied with a jazz/swing drummer. He knew my goals from day 1.

It all applies. A paradiddle is a paradiddle, a ratamacue is a ratamacue. A good teacher will teach you how to apply everything to anything. Even blast beats can be swung. It's all on the application and how you use them. Just outline your goals, what your drumming journey looks like, and trust your teacher. It may seem weird at first, but when it comes together you will get it.


New member
Thanks Bonzo, This is an example of what I meant. I thought it was a Jazz style but that just goes to show how little I know....


Alex Sanguinetti

Silver Member
You should study with an ADVANCED Jazz drummer, he will be versed in Rock, the opposite I think is not usual... (I´m being politial correct, hahaha). He will not have problems to teach you even if you never played a note in your life (on drums or any instrument), at least I would not have, why should I?

Please check out my webpage: http://www.alexsanguinetti.com , you¨ll see some students playing there:

9 students, also me at 10:37:

Best luck!


Platinum Member
Jazz teacher, if you want to be the most versatile drummer you can be. Rock teacher, if you want to be a frustrated, can’t play anything we’ll drummer like me. That’s the non-political correct way to say what Alex was eluding to.

Jeremy Bender

Platinum Member
The first question that comes to my mind is this:
Do you know how to hold the sticks? And by this I mean...have you had any lessons on grip technique, stick control ?
If not, then stop seek out a teacher who has a reputation in your area of good fundamental technique lessons. Some great stuff online for free these days. But a quality teacher with a solid foundation and lesson plan in person can't be replaced. There's no shortcuts.

If you have, then great! Seek out a teacher in your area who plays your preferred style for a living or has done so in the past.
I wish you the best of luck in your musical pursuits and keep us updated on your progress!
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"Uncle Larry"
I don't know why I am assuming this, but I am assuming that you are not versed in the jazz style. Forgive me if I am wrong about that. In my mind, to play a jazzy style....you have to immerse yourself in the style. By listening to jazz all the time. A teacher can't give you that, you have to do this for yourself. Make it easy on your teacher, listen to whatever music you are interested in for a thousand hours before trying to get a teacher to teach it to you. You need a knowledge base of inspiration if you will, to draw from.