Technique vs. groove.

Seafroggys

Silver Member
It's not an either/or thing. You *can* have one without the other, sure, but they're not mutually exclusive. That's a narrative that "groove" drummers with limited vocabulary like to tout to make them feel better about themselves. Its similar to how your average singer/songwriter refuses to learn music theory because it would "stunt their creativity." That's not how that works.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Well-known member
It's not an either/or thing. You *can* have one without the other, sure, but they're not mutually exclusive. That's a narrative that "groove" drummers with limited vocabulary like to tout to make them feel better about themselves. Its similar to how your average singer/songwriter refuses to learn music theory because it would "stunt their creativity." That's not how that works.
agreed...

I look at it like this:

I cna paint my house. I can go to the store, buy the materials, and get up there and get the paint on to the wood.

But it will look like crap. It will not be "100%"...because I don't know good painters technique. I don't know how to manipulate the facets of the medium via the little things that technique teaches you.

I feel like drumming is the same thing. People can "copy" groove and beats but it only gets them to a point. You have to have some knowledge about technique to be able to shift and play with the time to create groove. I don't think groove comes from luck...or honestly, "natural ability".
 

johnwesley

Silver Member
Groove IS a technique and often lost in the shuffle to impress. I do admit that sitting there on that throne constantly :in the pocket" is equivalent to being a human metronome, so what you do is learn how to add flourish that compliments the musical flow. If however the vocalist OR guitarist is not very adept at their performance, PLAY AS LOUD AND FLOURISHY AS POSSIBLE AND GRAB AS MUCH ATTENTION AS YOU CAN MUSTER. Ha Ha
 

Seafroggys

Silver Member
I mean, its the same the other way too. There's some technically proficient drummers out there who have stunted groove...an example I like to point out is Vinny Appice. He clearly has chops, but I always felt his groove felt a bit stilted. And some of the older DCI drummers who couldn't groove to save their life, but could run circles around the best drumset players in technique (thankfully DCI of the past 10-20 years is a lot more fluid so things groove more).
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Well-known member
Groove IS a technique and often lost in the shuffle to impress. I do admit that sitting there on that throne constantly :in the pocket" is equivalent to being a human metronome, so what you do is learn how to add flourish that compliments the musical flow. If however the vocalist OR guitarist is not very adept at their performance, PLAY AS LOUD AND FLOURISHY AS POSSIBLE AND GRAB AS MUCH ATTENTION AS YOU CAN MUSTER. Ha Ha
so true!!! It is a technique just like playing on the beat ,and even ahead of the beat, or what I call "square"...and it takes physical technique to create all of those "aural" techniques
 

bud7h4

Silver Member
you can't have one without the other....
This comment made me realize maybe technique is the wrong word for the cartoon. I wonder if it should be "technicality" instead. Because without technique a groove won't groove like a groove should. Technically speaking.

Tech ni cal i ty - the state of being technical; the use of technical terms or methods. (would apply to complex playing)

Tech nique - a skillful or efficient way of doing or achieving something. (would apply to a groove)
 

toddbishop

Platinum Member
Yeah I think the people thinking in these terms don't really understand either thing. Technique is not "playing fast/complicated", groove is not-- the antithesis of technique? Whatever they think it is.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
The cartoon is way off -the dude should have a big cranium for technique and groove, Why is the technique so muscle bound and groove skinny? Seems biased implications that groove is wimpy, or takes little effort or has little value. Bite me artist. The drummer would be svelte with a bg cranium (like the Finnish drummer). I call bull crap on the cartoonist. He doesn’t even have a chin and look at that noodle - it wouldn’t hold a walnut. And speaking of walnuts I can’t say anything about his tiny hands cause it could be considered political LOL.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
Groove and technique are inseparable. Without technique, you can't animate a groove, and without the capacity to groove, your technique is rendered all but irrelevant. Drumming is an amalgamation of synchronized elements, not a linear series of unrelated parts. Every attribute shapes and informs every other attribute. The system that results is cosmopolitan, not parochial.
 

johnwesley

Silver Member
This comment made me realize maybe technique is the wrong word for the cartoon. I wonder if it should be "technicality" instead. Because without technique a groove won't groove like a groove should. Technically speaking.

Tech ni cal i ty - the state of being technical; the use of technical terms or methods. (would apply to complex playing)

Tech nique - a skillful or efficient way of doing or achieving something. (would apply to a groove)
There you go getting "technical" on us. Daniel Webster.....purveyor of "hair splitting".
BTW, I watched a documentary last night called "No Maps on my Taps" from 1978 About 3 tap dancers in their late 60s. When asked who taught him to tap, one of the men laughed and said "nobody taught me nothin'. There ain't no school 'cept the soul. Everything I do is what I feel and what my body says do. It comes off workin' the streets and people reaction. Only school is for white folks and that don't teach you nothin' but countin' 1-2-3-4. Shit, dancin' comes from the inside." I feel that way about playing music. You get some help learning to "operate" your instrument and then let your soul take over.
Gentlemen and Gentleladies, start your rebuttals.
 

Swiss Matthias

Platinum Member
I think what people mean by 'technique' in discussions like this is actually 'overplaying'.

Personally, I'm most impressed with musicians that have great technique and are virtuosos, but play musically appropriate and can 'hold back' without sounding like holding back, but playing the perfect thing for the moment. People who play 'for the song' but actually can't play more than they do are just less impressive:ROFLMAO:. Also, of course, people who are virtous but overplay constantly are not impressive at all.

But what were we talking about:unsure:?
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
There you go getting "technical" on us. Daniel Webster.....purveyor of "hair splitting".
BTW, I watched a documentary last night called "No Maps on my Taps" from 1978 About 3 tap dancers in their late 60s. When asked who taught him to tap, one of the men laughed and said "nobody taught me nothin'. There ain't no school 'cept the soul. Everything I do is what I feel and what my body says do. It comes off workin' the streets and people reaction. Only school is for white folks and that don't teach you nothin' but countin' 1-2-3-4. Shit, dancin' comes from the inside." I feel that way about playing music. You get some help learning to "operate" your instrument and then let your soul take over.
Gentlemen and Gentleladies, start your rebuttals.
I agree with this account overall, John. My only addition would be that, while rhythm, feel, and so on do come from "inside," you need a well-functioning "outside" to give form to them. The immaterial is only a concept until acted upon by the material. In that regard, technique, whether it stems from formal training or self-taught exploration, is essential to the implementation of a groove. One reason (not the only reason) all drummers groove a bit differently is that no two drummers have identical technique.
 

johnwesley

Silver Member
I agree with this account overall, John. My only addition would be that, while rhythm, feel, and so on do come from "inside," you need a well-functioning "outside" to give form to them. The immaterial is only a concept until acted upon by the material. In that regard, technique, whether it stems from formal training or self-taught exploration, is essential to the implementation of a groove. One reason (not the only reason) all drummers groove a bit differently is that no two drummers have identical technique.
Conceptual immateriality becoming material through action is a rather avant garde way of putting it. I agree that experimentation based on experience is essential to bring forth potentially new ways of expression and performance. Probably why I look to Keith Moon, Steve Moore and Mike Terrana for guidance in expanding the paradigm of playing drums. All three know the rudiments/technique of drumming, but each presents them differently and in a way that smashes "the norm". In doing so it makes me think "why didn't I think of that?" Now that I've intellectualized this thread I'm going to rest my brain by listening to Emmylou Harris album "Ballad of Sally Rose". (which by the way.....if I could have only one piece of music to hear ever again in my life, it would be that)
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
Conceptual immateriality becoming material through action is a rather avant garde way of putting it. I agree that experimentation based on experience is essential to bring forth potentially new ways of expression and performance. Probably why I look to Keith Moon, Steve Moore and Mike Terrana for guidance in expanding the paradigm of playing drums. All three know the rudiments/technique of drumming, but each presents them differently and in a way that smashes "the norm". In doing so it makes me think "why didn't I think of that?" Now that I've intellectualized this thread I'm going to rest my brain by listening to Emmylou Harris album "Ballad of Sally Rose". (which by the way.....if I could have only one piece of music to hear ever again in my life, it would be that)
Emmylou's "Ballad" is certainly a timeless recording. Not at all a bad option if you can only choose one. Enjoy your listening session.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
No no, this is all wrong.

It's supposed to be "CHOPS VS. GROOVE". Geez.
Dont we work on chops to develop technique so we can groove?

How many grooves can a groove chopper chop if a groove chopper can chop grooves?

How much technique does a technician technically tech, if a technician technically techs technique?

I'm so confused.
 
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