First, ask yourself if you can honestly play the original, as it was recorded. If you can't, there's probably something worth learning, and your playing will benefit from the "faithful" approach.When learning covers, who here prefers to remain totally faithful to the original drumming parts? I only ask because I sometime like to improvise by adding my own feel to a song. This might be the odd fill or groove pattern which may have been influenced by other material I listen to. Am I alone on this one?
I'll sometimes reference live versions to see what's going on if it's hard to tell on the record.How close to the recording does the original drummer keep to what they play live?
That's what I'm getting at. The bands playing these hit songs themselves don't play them note for note to the album version. I often reference live versions when I'm playing covers, for many of the same reasons you do. Also, many times the instrumentation just isn't there to fill up all the space of a studio track, the live versions are sometimes more lean, which inspires the whole band to play it a bit differently. This leads to the next point.I'll sometimes reference live versions to see what's going on if it's hard to tell on the record.
Lars does some different fills on "For Whom The Bell Tolls" live. They also stuck a break in the 2nd verse where typically a drum fill landed, and the song fades out on the record. I like some of his live parts to that song better than the recording, so I always played them that way.
In situations with overdubbed parts I'll reference live versions to see how they do it, or try and find a creative way to pull off the overdub.
On "White Wedding" the big tom hits are an overdub, as the 4 on the floor groove doesn't stop under them. So if you want to play those big hits, you would be forced to do them as fills. When I play it I cross under using my left hand on the floor tom hits while maintaining the 4 on the floor. You end up skipping one Hi Hat note this way as you'll need to open your hands to hit the floor tom with the snare, but other than that it's correct.
Another fun challenge was "Don't Stop Believing". I saw a video of Steve Smith playing it open handed with a 2nd Ride next to his Hi Hat. Well I'm not bringing a 2nd Ride out or reconfiguring my kit for one song.
I ended up being able to play the parts correctly by again crossing under for all the Tom hits and opening up for the accents on the bell of the Ride.
Loaded indeed. It's more of a philosophic question. I'd take the position that any band playing any song is welcome to do what they want with it. I don't think anything in the realm of cover band tunes is that sacred. I can see where this is a slippery slope, but my intent is that the spirit of the original is still kept, however I've still heard many wholesale reimaginings that I prefer to the original.That's a slightly loaded question... a band playing its own song is welcome to do whatever they want with it.
That is because you get off on the physical skills and the analytical aside of breaking down a drum part and how it functions with the other instruments in detail. We tend to enjoy what we are good at.Covers are just someone else's originals. Music is music as far as I'm concerned.
Exactly. 20202020Unless the band is making a conscious decision to re-work a cover song, I play it as faithful to the original as possible. Me putting "my own spin" on the cover strikes me as just self-serving. Most people who go to listen to a band playing covers want to hear something that sounds like the record. So I try to give them that.