Easy pre-beginner song?

Jeremy Bender

Platinum Member
To get the triplet coordination happening you can play along to a song like this one.

After getting comfortable playing the triplet feel you can move up the tempo with a more solid two and four on the snare like this...
 
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C.M. Jones

Well-known member
Whoah,

Absolutely no way would I recommend Back In Black to a pre-beginner. I'm also in the camp that recognises that Phil Rudd often throws little land mines into AC/DC songs that would have people better than pre-beginners wondering why they've gone wrong. Yes you can probably bulldoze a 4/4 over the top of their songs but where's the fun in that? Because I don't know music theory I can't write here the reasons why Back In Black is difficult but within a couple of bars there's the deviation from 4/4 with the snare to hi hat filll Da Da, Da Da, Da Da, DA DA. The almost galloping feel feel of the "I'm Back" chorus differs from the verses.There's bits where the drummer hangs off in the outro solo. Can I play it? Yes. But am I far better than a pre-beginner? Yes I'd like to think so.
Likewise I Love Rock n Roll. It wasn't that long ago that there was a thread on here where a member asked for help counting the "...Dance With Me" line at the end of the chorus where the bass drum beat goes form 1-2, to 1-2, 1-2-3. That would absolutely wipe a pre beginner out.

To add a suggestion to the list, Living After Midnight by Judas Priest. Off the top of my head I'm pretty sure it's played very straight and the cymbal hits are placed where you would "expect" them to be,
A pre-beginner would find life a lot easier if he or she spent a year or so on a practice pad before every going near a drum kit. Establishing four-way independence is considerably more challenging when you haven't first developed your hands. Learning is an incremental process. Expecting your entire body to engage in complex, precise movements from the outset is something of a stretch. Many bad habits can form along the way. Patience and discipline pave the path to excellence.
 

Woolwich

Silver Member
A pre-beginner would find life a lot easier if he or she spent a year or so on a practice pad before every going near a drum kit. Establishing four-way independence is considerably more challenging when you haven't first developed your hands. Learning is an incremental process. Expecting your entire body to engage in complex, precise movements from the outset is something of a stretch. Many bad habits can form along the way. Patience and discipline pave the path to excellence.
I think it's horses for courses.
I started drumming because my mates had guitars, we loved Heavy Metal music and we all wanted to start a band. I couldn't have worked with a practice pad for a year because either the band would never have got off the ground and the inspiration that was essential for me to play wouldn't have existed, or else they'd have gotten someone else in to play with them while I honed my skills and there wouldn't have been a place for me in the band at the end of it. And in that case whoever had the job may well have had it because they jumped at the chance rather than take lessons.
I'm in no doubt that my drumming skills are way below those of other drummers who've been taught in the more formalised and established settings, but I also can't complain at the amount and type of gigs and the great fun I've had that's come from the situation that I just sat behind a kit and tried.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Just do it. Play to a song you like and think you might be able to do. If you can't play that one, pick another. Or tackle the obstacles. It almost doesn't matter. Any song will expose what you can and can't do. Don't wait for a perfect pre-beginner song, it doesn't exist.

The quickest way to learn to swim is to dive in. Same thing here.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
I think it's horses for courses.
I started drumming because my mates had guitars, we loved Heavy Metal music and we all wanted to start a band. I couldn't have worked with a practice pad for a year because either the band would never have got off the ground and the inspiration that was essential for me to play wouldn't have existed, or else they'd have gotten someone else in to play with them while I honed my skills and there wouldn't have been a place for me in the band at the end of it. And in that case whoever had the job may well have had it because they jumped at the chance rather than take lessons.
I'm in no doubt that my drumming skills are way below those of other drummers who've been taught in the more formalised and established settings, but I also can't complain at the amount and type of gigs and the great fun I've had that's come from the situation that I just sat behind a kit and tried.
Each man has to choose his own course. I'm not suggesting there's only one way to go about learning. At the same time, a lot of beginners complain about feeling overwhelmed, both physically and intellectually, at the outset of their drumming journey. Often, the culprit is their attempt to take on too much at once. Everyone will relate to that quandary differently, just as everyone will have unique drumming goals in mind.
 

Lennytoons

Senior Member
Lido Shuffle/ Boz Scaggs
Rosanna/ Toto
Anything by Buddy Rich
J/K Of course. I like the early Beatles stuff. We Can Work it Out is a great song to start with. Ringo masterfully changes simple beats throughout the song. Billy Jean is simple but not easy. The beat is easy, the feel and groove take a while to get down.
Listen to some Steve Jordan recordings. He plays simply but beautifully and with an unmatched groove.
 

Rochelle Rochelle

Senior Member
One of the first songs I learned was Tom Petty's I Won't Back Down. Basic rock beat and there's a one-bar fill that happens a few times throughout and you can just play the beat through it when it come up until you get comfortable and can practice the fill.
 

moodman

Well-known member
Us ancient fossils started with Walk Don't Run by the Ventures. Easy kick and snare 1/8th note cymbal.

but you don't need to play along with something, necessarily, until you know some basic time keeping.
a quick 'lesson'
Try kick playing 1-2-3-4, snare on 2 and 4 , and these Cymbal flows: 1 2 3 4 that's 1/4 notes,
1&2&3&4& that's 8th notes or 1e&uh2e&uh3e&uh4e&uh these are 16ths, in faster rhythms this is usually done 2 handed with one hand coming off for the 2 and 4 backbeat.
Shuffles and swing, Hip Hop are based in triplets, so a slow blues for instance: 1&uh2&uh3&uh4&uh
swing and shuffles are 'broken triplet' based meaning you leave out the middle '&' part, but give the '-' the same amount of time as the played notes.
For a shuffle: 1-uh2-uh3-uh4-uh
swing leaves out the last 2 partials of the triplet first, then plays 1st and 3rd , these then alternate. 1--2-uh3--4-uh
Now if you divide a 1/4 note into 6 parts (played as 2 broken triplets 1-uh&-uh2-uh&-uh 3-uh&-uh4-uh&-uh) and play kick 1 and 3, snare 2 and 4 you get what I learned as 'real funk' but, I think is called Hip Hop, I could be corrected. Also usually 2 hands playing the cymbal flow.
These just address the cymbal flow with backbeat, snare and kick have more to do once you learn the basic beat keeping.
I am not a teacher, this is just the way I think of cymbal flows.
You want to play steady time but, when learning, practicing going really slow, breaking time when necessary to 'stumble' through a part is not a problem, when you put it all together practice with a metronome (or recording) to solidify.
 
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Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
As long as you can feel the pulse it's not like you have to play something exactly like the record when practicing. Following along with that other stuff while just keeping the beat and trying to go for a similar feel is good ear training.

As long as you can feel the music, you can use whatever you like and just keep it simple yourself.

For some extra stuff you can get some play-a-long material aka music with the drums removed. In my teaching I use mainly.:
- Tommy Igoe's Groove Essentials I and II
- Dave Weckl's Ultimate play-along I and II
- Jim Riley's' Survuval Guide for the modern drummer.
- Turn It Up Lay It Down, which is a series based on several style.

These products offer amazing value for money.
 

GOOSE72

Well-known member
Hi.

Do any of you guys have any song recommendations for a pre-beginner to learn (where the drum tab is easy to find, as I can't play by ear).

I did try and look this up, and one that came up was - White Stripes '7 Nation Army', but when I looked at it it didn't seem so 'beginnery' to me - like it contained amongst other things 'triplets' (I'm not up to that level yet :-(, that's why I realised I must actually be a pre-beginner'.

Obviously my learning hasn't been very structured. Is there an easier song that I'd be able to try and play all the way through?

Cheers.
I just have a couple questions. What is a pre-beginner? When you speak about the drum tab is easy to find, what does that mean? When you say you can't play by ear what does that mean? My last question is when you first played the drums until now how were you taught?
 
Seven Nation Army
Billie Jean
Another One Bites The Dust (skip the fills)
We Will Rock You (if they're really little)

I also like to use "Supersonic" by Oasis as an ear training test. See if they can listen for the kick drum pattern. Also which cymbal their right hand should be on, and if it's the hi hat, how loose or tight should it be. You'd be surprised how hard it is for beginners to pick that stuff out when they're used to only caring about the lyrics of a song.
 

Guttermouth

New member
I just have a couple questions. What is a pre-beginner? When you speak about the drum tab is easy to find, what does that mean? When you say you can't play by ear what does that mean? My last question is when you first played the drums until now how were you taught?
As I inferred in my original message. I think a pre-beginner is someone that tries and fails to play a beginner song (and I'm not talking in terms of 100% time keeping) I mean when they come to a part that is like, urrggghhh . . like the triplet example given . . I wouldn't consider that to be a beginner song. I don't think any drum teacher would teach triplets in a first lesson (maybe some of the teachers here could confirm or not? LOL.)

Not playing by ear is that I can't listen to a song and know the kick drum pattern, snare and everything else. Sometimes they are obvious. But when all the rest of the music is kicking in guitars, bass guitar it can be difficult to pick things out. It's similar to how guitar and bass players can't all just listen to music and know exactly what chords and notes are being played.

I taught myself in the few weeks I've been playing and downloaded a sheet of easy beginner drum patterns. That's basically it.
Like - hit hat on quarter notes 1-2-3-4. Then adding Kick drum on beat 1 and 3 and snare on beat 2 and 4.
Then adding a crash' on beat 1.
Then attempting to hit 8th note hi-hats whilst playing the same kick and snare. Then changing that around a bit.
 
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