"Re-learning"

jayblazeff

Senior Member
I've been playing drums for about 20 years, and except for what i learned in school (concert band, marching band, jazz band 6th-12th grades), i've never had lessons. I havent been playing much the last few years and i want to get back into drumming. because of my work schedule and hours (i split nights and days, so does the wife), it's difficult to play the kit on a routine like i used to, so i'm going to work just on a pad as much as possible. So i kind of feel like i'm starting from scratch, going back to the basics. This time around, i want to focus more on things like technique and phrasing instead of just "playing". i've gotten some good tips from lurking around the threads here and i have a few questions about practicing.

1. should i just practice on a pad for awhile until i get the rudiments down solid, or should i continue to just "jam" on the kit, applying as i go ? (i know this is probably much debated)

2. i've been working on rudiments, but i'm having a hard time with the accents. is it okay to get the sticking down first then go back and work on the accents ? or should i just play super slow and hammer it out with the accents ?

3. is it a good idea to work on hand techique then work on the feet later, or should i focus on both at the same time ?

4. what is a good book for technique ? i'm thinking "stick control for the snare drummer" that i saw in another thread would be a great start ?
 

CavGator

Member
Stick Control for the Snare Drummer is the Bible. That said, it is like martial arts. It is designed to build muscle memory. It is a S-L-O-O-O-O-W process, that may take months, years, or a lifetime to fortify.

If you do exactly what they say, you WILL have awesome technique. Some say to simply devote your life to the first page, VERY gradually increasing tempo. In a couple of years, you will be EXTREMELY proficient in the fundamentals.

Wax on.....Wax off.

Forever...
 

jeffwj

Platinum Member
I am happy to answer your questions, however I would recommend finding a teacher. A teacher will be able to pinpoint your weaknesses and bad habits. He/she should also have a plan for your progression. Here is a list of teachers in Ohio from the Vic Firth website.

http://www.vicfirth.com/education/edteam_roster_state.php?state=OH

Now for your questions. I will answer them based on what I typically do with my students.

1. should i just practice on a pad for awhile until i get the rudiments down solid, or should i continue to just "jam" on the kit, applying as i go ? (i know this is probably much debated)
I start of each lesson on snare drum/pad. This is where we work on technique and notation. Then we move to the drum set where we work on coordination, styles, and chart reading. You asked about "jamming." Free improvisation can be very beneficial, but I would also balance that out with structured exercises.
2. i've been working on rudiments, but i'm having a hard time with the accents. is it okay to get the sticking down first then go back and work on the accents ? or should i just play super slow and hammer it out with the accents ?
Gerorge Lawrence Stone's first snare drum book, Stick Control, has no accents. His second book, Accents and Rebounds, does. This leads me to believe that development of even strokes is a good starting point. After that the accents can be added.

3. is it a good idea to work on hand techique then work on the feet later, or should i focus on both at the same time ?
I would focus on one at a time.

4. what is a good book for technique ? i'm thinking "stick control for the snare drummer" that i saw in another thread would be a great start ?
Yes. Stick Control is a classic. Master Studies is a book that was written by Joe Morello, Stone's prize student. I would suggest both books.
 

jayblazeff

Senior Member
jeff, thanks alot for the response ! that's what i was looking for.
as far as getting a teacher, i'd love to, but it's hard to find the time right now. the only free time i get is usually from 10 at night to 6 am. so i think it'll be pretty hard to find a teacher with those hours ! I do know a few teachers in my area though, and someday i plan to hire one. when it comes to "jamming", what i meant was i just play along to music, or play with some friends from my old band.
 

grannydrums

Senior Member
You might find a teacher willing to teach late at night--especially one who has a day job in a school. I would get a teacher if you possibly can, it would mean that you can use the time you have more constructively.

Isnt drumming supposed to be fun-- do you really want to spend years on a pad?? I think you should spend a large portion of your time getting stick control, but feet are just as important and so is co-ordintation and indipendance--get onto a kit as often as you can.
 
Top