Rimshots on every snare hit

JimmyM

Platinum Member
After trying to tune my 10" walnut tom to sound like a timbale and not being satisfied, I decided I need a real timbale on my set.
You need 4 to pull off both parts of the drum battle in "Frankenstein" between Edgar Winter and Chuck Ruff.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry" - Administrator
Staff member
Another reason I use the rimshot a lot is because it takes me WAY less effort to achieve the exact volume I need. It's energy conservation. How many backbeats do I do in a night? A thousand at least? Center strikes cost me more energy. I am of the mindset that the more relaxed I can be, the less effort I have to expend, the smoother my drumming comes off
 

Icetech

Gold Member
Just stop it, please.

I can understand if you have songs that are truly best served by constant rim shots, but nobody wants to hear that **** on every song, especially if you're not playing death metal. Even death metal fans get sick of it. And really, folks...if you think your snare needs constant rimshots to sound badass, you either need another snare or you need to up your badass game, and I've been around long enough to bet money that it's not the snare.

Phew! Glad I got that off my chest...been wanting to say that ever since I got on here.

So who's with me here?

I personally don't like rimshots except when i'm miced, and then i still only use them as a accent for like a quick hard fill when changing to a chorus or whatever..
 

dcrigger

Senior Member
To continue debunking the notion that rimshots on the snare are nothing but loud and obnoxious... I played Burt Bacharach's live shows on and off for about 30 years and during that whole time I doubt I ever played more than 32 bars of center hit back beats in any one show. And his show literally defines "restrained" with zero place for loud excesses at all.

It's just a different sound - and one that can be played at nearly all dynamic levels.
 

heartbeat

Active Member
Depends on the genre. I play rimshots for about 99% of what I do, rock and country-rock (the exception would be on certain ballads). If I didn't, the songs would sound wimpy and the snare wouldn't cut through. That being said, rimshots don't have to mean "loud." I can easily control the volume. If you've ever been to a Jim Riley clinic, he'll tell you, "Always, always, always play rimshots." For what that's worth....
 

JimmyM

Platinum Member
To continue debunking the notion that rimshots on the snare are nothing but loud and obnoxious... I played Burt Bacharach's live shows on and off for about 30 years and during that whole time I doubt I ever played more than 32 bars of center hit back beats in any one show. And his show literally defines "restrained" with zero place for loud excesses at all.

It's just a different sound - and one that can be played at nearly all dynamic levels.
WOW, Burt Bacharach? You must be pretty good :D

Awesome gig score, man! Not my favorite vocalist ever, but dang, what a body of work. And you did rimshots with him almost all the time, eh? I am sure I've heard you playing with him at some point if you were with him that long, and I never would have guessed it if you hadn't told me.
 

Lefty Phillips

Well-known Member
Yeah, no, I'm going to keep using rimshots at will. I like the texture, and I sometimes use them on my toms as well for a timbale-like sound, which I also like.

The main thing I'm working on right now, is dynamics, by which I mean playing gently, and that applies to rimshots as much as anything else. They're not necessarily louder than hitting the drum in the center of the head is, that's up to the player.
 

JimmyM

Platinum Member
OK, now that I'm taking rimshots way more seriously, I have a very important gear question...to me, anyway.

Been around long enough to know that you can get used to any way an instrument is built if you put the time in. For example, I have no problem going between long and short scale basses at will now, though I did at first.

The two snares I have right now are a vintage Ludwig Standard with diecast hoops/straight rims, and my bottom feeder DDrum snare with 1.6mm flanged hoops. My next snare is going to be your basic stock Acro, too, and I'll feel a lot better about taking it to gigs than either one of the others, for obvious but polar opposite reasons. Plus the Standard rim sticks up a little higher and does a number on your sticks.

I would never dream of swapping rims between these two snares, but am I going to have major inconsistency problems in the future if I don't stick to one or the other?
 
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JimmyM

Platinum Member
And when you find an angle you like, use the level feature on an app like Measure to measure the angle. Then you can make sure it's consistent at every gig.
I didn't know you could do that. That's pretty cool.
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
To continue debunking the notion that rimshots on the snare are nothing but loud and obnoxious... I played Burt Bacharach's live shows on and off for about 30 years and during that whole time I doubt I ever played more than 32 bars of center hit back beats in any one show. And his show literally defines "restrained" with zero place for loud excesses at all.

It's just a different sound - and one that can be played at nearly all dynamic levels.
This sounds interesting !! But I often see amateur drummers overuse rim shots. They only play one kind of loud rim shot.

Because I can't hit consistent softer rim shots with my traditional grip left hand, I don't use rim shots on my normal back beats.
However, last night I was playing a low volume gig in a restaurant using wooden rod sticks. During a couple of rock songs I began hitting rim shots with the rods. For some reason it was easy for me to hit consistent rim shots, matched grip with my left hand. Sounded pretty good. A nice softer crack. "He Likes it. Hey Mikey!"

.
 

JimmyM

Platinum Member
Man, I really stepped in dogshit with this thread, eh? Well get used to it, folks. I'm here to question conventional wisdom and question why things common with drummers today are misperceptions or just things I hate. This thread turned out to be a misperception, especially after I tuned my beater snare to doosh and gave it some rimshots in beats. OK, that's pretty awesome even on a beater snare, and maybe because it's a beater snare. I doubt you all are are going to get off so easily in my future "I hate your cranked snare and tom heads" thread, but I'm going to hold off on that one for now...this one went foo far as it is.
 

dcrigger

Senior Member
This sounds interesting !! But I often see amateur drummers overuse rim shots. They only play one kind of loud rim shot.

Because I can't hit consistent softer rim shots with my traditional grip left hand, I don't use rim shots on my normal back beats.
However, last night I was playing a low volume gig in a restaurant using wooden rod sticks. During a couple of rock songs I began hitting rim shots with the rods. For some reason it was easy for me to hit consistent rim shots, matched grip with my left hand. Sounded pretty good. A nice softer crack. "He Likes it. Hey Mikey!"

.
Interesting - I hadn't thought about how trad vs matched would play into this. But you're probably right. The trad LH stick is out there, sort of floating, poised to fully ring and resonate - which I think effects what it hits. Where with matched, it seems like we have more control over how much flesh is touching and pressure is being used to dampen the stick - thus dulling the sound of the rimshot. Not at the drums right now - but that really makes sense.

Which I might explain why some folks can't imagine using rimshots this way. But yes, with matched grip I can keep them pretty soft if I choose.
 

Chris Whitten

Silver Member
Man, I reallI'm here to question conventional wisdom and question why things common with drummers today are misperceptions or just things I hate.
Or....you could use threads to understand things you currently don't get.
Rimshots are a sound. They are the typical drum sound of funk and modern popular music.
back in the 70's with disco, The Eagles and Fleetwood Mac, the fat, dead, centre hit was THE SOUND.
If two drummers go for a modern rock gig, one plays centre hits the other rimshots, the latter will probably get the gig. If the same two drummers audition for a 70's AOR cover band, the latter shouldn't get the gig, unless he/she understands centre hits are more appropriate than rimshots.
Ideally you should be good at both strokes and use them from song to song where appropriate.
 
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