Looking for Country Song w/ Challenging & Good Drums

dwpearl03

New member
I’m going to an open band night that is country based with some friends. I need some good country songs that are popular and have some drum tracks that are different from the standard 2/4 snare and 1/3 kick or shuffle. Any thoughts?

So to be upfront, I’m not a huge fan of country music. I find most country drumming pretty basic and straight forward. (No offense meant to the drummers that love country drumming…just not my thing.)

Thanks!
 

Cmdr. Ross

Silver Member
I Think I'll Just Stay Here and Drink by Merle Haggard.
Starts pretty simple, but then the twists begin.;)
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
Please don't befoul country drumming by attempting to transform it into a monstrous miscarriage of polyrhythmic showmanship, riddled with pointless chops that introduce nothing but clutter and disorientation. Country drumming is meant to be "straightforward." It's centered on keeping time with modesty and reserve, a tasteful mode of restraint that's impressive in and of itself. Drummers who wish to make maniacal YouTube spectacles of themselves should find another genre.
 
Last edited:

Otto

Platinum Member
I don't believe I have heard a country song with drumming that made me sit up and say 'what was THAT!'...and I am aware that impressing me is not the role of drumming in country music.

I would take a 'train beat', a 4 on the floor and a shuffle all nice and polished. I would also consider keeping the crashes to a minimum...and i would mentally slap my hand when i get bored BEFORE i start embellishing...then proceed to bury the click.

....then they call ZZ Top's Tush a country song...along with most things that would have been labeled Pop before the 80's. --Don't take the bait and stay in the feel you discussed with the leader(s) that invited you.
 
Last edited:

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
If you're not a fan of Country, why go to a Country jam? I get that not everyone wants to play straight beats, so wouldn't a fusion or funk jam be more satisfying?
 

Neal Pert

Well-known member
Coolest drumming I've heard on a country album in a long time is Matt Chamberlain on Miranda Lambert's The Weight of These Wings. That album is a tour de force on how to make a country album sonically interesting. Great songs, too.

But, then again-- I'd go and listen to something like Don Williams' version of "Tulsa Time." Don Williams-- not that Eric Clapton garbage. If you don't immediately get why that's an awesome drum track, maybe sit out the jam sessions for a while. You may not be doing anyone any favors by going including yourself.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Country drumming to me = 95% keeping time front to back. I was going to say country waltzes in 3/4 time are nice...but it's still mainly time front to back. (Never underestimate being able to hold the same beat for 4 minutes)

Perhaps the more modern country will fit the bill. Modern country sounds like mild rock with country flavoring to me. Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats" is a pretty cool tune, even without vocals. Country rock songs from a band like America for instance may work too. Everyone loves to hear Johnny Cash, but the drumming might not be what you're looking for from the sounds of it.
 
But, then again-- I'd go and listen to something like Don Williams' version of "Tulsa Time." Don Williams-- not that Eric Clapton garbage.

Don Williams was awesome and I love his version. But Jamie Oldaker (as always) kicks absolutely all kinds of ass on EC's various versions.

 

Neal Pert

Well-known member
Don Williams was awesome and I love his version. But Jamie Oldaker (as always) kicks absolutely all kinds of ass on EC's various versions.

Well, everyone's got an opinion. Glad you can enjoy this. :D
 

dwpearl03

New member
Thanks for the ideas everyone! Just to be clear, my friends wanted to go the country jam so I’m tagging along. I’ve sat in on country bands many times, I was just looking for something creative to play. For example, Rodeo from Garth Brooks breaks from the norm and has some really inventive drumming but ultimately doesn’t feel over played. I’ve also recently come across Brother Osbourne. The band as a whole keeps you on your toes while still keeping the country roots true.
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
Zac Brown is one to listen to:

 

lefty2

Platinum Member
Please don't befoul country drumming by attempting to transform it into a monstrous miscarriage of polyrhythmic showmanship, riddled with pointless chops that introduce nothing but clutter and disorientation. Country drumming is meant to be "straightforward." It's centered on keeping time with modesty and reserve, a tasteful mode of restraint that's impressive in and of itself. Drummers who wish to make maniacal YouTube spectacles of themselves should find another genre.
What he said. The art of playing country music on the drums is making it feel like country.. The mechanics of it are very simple however Making it feel good is the trick
 

dmacc_2

Well-known member
It's all about the groove. The right groove. Country swing is very different than other types of 'swing'.

I also think which generation of country music you're playing determines what type of groove to get after.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Well-known member
anything with a "train beat"...especially an up tempo "hop skip" train beat...(where the feel is more of a dotted 8th -> 16th combination than a triplet feel)


not bragging at all, but I get told all of the time that my train beat is stellar...many guys say it has the best feel they have ever played with.

They ask me what the secret is, and I say "two words: marching band" From my experience, that seems to be "the hardest" beat to master according to all the other players, bbut it is just marching groove to me

we have an old well respected steel guitar player around town, and he played with us one afternoon and told me that "you should go to Nashville with that train..." I was informed by our guit player that he rarely compliments drummers. I though to my self "huh...not to bad for this metal/punk thrasher". I always, always count myself down as a "country hack"
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
This may be a silly analogy, but here's how I compare playing country music with rock and roll:

Playing rock and roll on drums is sort of like a nice sports car or a race car. It can be flashy, fun, fast, and loud. Even slow rock songs and rock ballads can still flashy and loud. Point A to point B can be an adventure in a sports car, especially on a curvy road.

Playing country on drums like diesel pickup truck. Nothing too flashy, but it has a remarkable amount of torque and pulling power. It's a reliable, smooth, steady ride from start to finish. Yes, it can go fast, but when a diesel goes fast, it really means business! Travels from point A to point B are routes which are familiar and any curves are well-memorized and it just cruises through them. There's comfort in the predictability.
 
Top