Stick heights/control

Benfordrum

Senior Member
Hey guys! I'm trying to figure out how to lower my stick heights and gain more control around the kit... I've been practicing with more wrist in order to develop a better touch. However, i still have a bit of trouble controlling the sticks at a lower volumes, which is pretty essential considering that I want to be a jazz drummer.

I look at guys like Gregory Hutchinson and Lewis Nash and notice their stick control. They seem to use an open hand with a lot of wrist movement. Anyone have an idea of the technique/how I can practice it/ how they practice it? Thanks!
 

Nour Ayasso

Senior Member
If you are familiar with the exercise "eights" you should look into it again. If you aren't, it's just an exercise of doing straight eighth notes alternating between your left and right hand. There's variations
http://www.snarescience.com/exercises/eights-dynamics.pdf
http://www.snarescience.com/exercises/eight-on-a-hand.pdf
The dynamic one will help you build dynamics, as in, control over your stick. Also try doing 3" and 6" heights separately. Then try to combine them in an accent pattern as an exercise.
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
How high above the drums do you sit?
Where are the drums in relation to your hands?



Maybe you need to move the drums to a new location in relation to your body.
I did it and it helped me a great deal.


.
 

Wavelength

Platinum Member
Hey guys! I'm trying to figure out how to lower my stick heights and gain more control around the kit.
Put your sticks closer to the drum before you hit. Next question! ;)

Seriously, though. Play through Stick Control, rudiments, snare etudes and what have you while staying very very close to the drum. Play your grooves and fills as quietly as you can without sacrificing intensity: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C1RpUXANkM0
 

Benfordrum

Senior Member
How high above the drums do you sit?
Where are the drums in relation to your hands?



Maybe you need to move the drums to a new location in relation to your body.
I did it and it helped me a great deal.


.


Haha! I sit with my legs at a bit more than a 90 degree angle. However I have really long legs and a short torso so I should probably start sitting higher. To get a good clean hit on the tom i kind of have to lean over though, long legs= sitting farther
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
Haha! I sit with my legs at a bit more than a 90 degree angle. However I have really long legs and a short torso so I should probably start sitting higher. To get a good clean hit on the tom i kind of have to lean over though, long legs= sitting farther

I just used that Keith Moon picture to be funny. As you can see sometimes he might as well have been standing up when he played. And talk about stick height! HA !

Yes, my point was if you have to reach too far to strike your snare, toms and cymbals, then you might be sacrificing some control.
And your stick height might be brought down lower by bringing your drums closer to your natural height.
You said you have to lean over to get a good hit on the tom, this sounds like a possible problem and may not help you with your stick control and height issues.

Recently I took three drum lessons just so I could have someone else look at the way I play.
The teacher made some excellent suggestions that helped me a great deal.
Sometimes we need someone else to watch and evaluate how we play.

.
 

vxla

Silver Member
Go through the first three pages of Stick Control slow, staying relaxed, and focusing on hitting in the exact same spot on your practice pad each time. Again, slow..slow...slow. It's torture, believe me.

Next, put a small dot in center of each drum and take something simple (like 16th notes at 90bpm) and practice playing them around the kit focusing on hitting in the same spot of the drum each time. Stay relaxed, play from the wrist, and keep the stick height low.

There are really no shortcuts to control; it just takes time and patience.
 
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