The Fear Of Drum Solos

I too hate solo's - playing or listening, even to the very best of our trade. I can appreciate the skills involved but it bores me in a minute none the less.
As for ANYONE touching my drums ( let alone standing on them ) there would be violence. All my band mates are well drilled and deter any one from even getting close.
 
I wish I could join in with the solo love fest, but I’m a bassist by trade, and the amount of solos we ever get is pretty much nil. Once in a while I might get a very short one, most of the time nothing. And if you insist on one, the thought everyone gets but doesn’t want to say is “wanker.” Hey, I chose this life…I knew the risks. So I never insist on one. I won’t get one anyway.
 
I guess I'm in the "don't really care to solo" group. Nothing against those that like to or want to, because we are all different and that is the greatest part of our community. And I really dig a well thought out solo if I'm going to see a group that I like. We saw Badflower last weekend and Anthony Sonetti straight-up killed it during the show and his solo.

A minor portion of my mindset (my opinion only) is that nobody wants to hear me play a solo in the middle of a show full of cover music. If there is a break in the song that requires a quick fill or a couple bars of just me playing, that's cool.

The larger, part is that I am a pretty animated person behind the kit, and love to entertain on stage only. But once I leave the safety of my kit on breaks, I really do not like attention or to really talk to anyone I don't know. And if I was put in a position where it's like "hey, here is Tony.....playing drums for you", then that could encourage more people to approach me on break. And then I have to go through the agonizing ritual of small talk.

My band always jokes with me about being an introvert, because I hide it very well in those situations, but they have learned to read my micro-expressions and pull me out when I've had enough...:ROFLMAO:
 
I think it's an inherent fear in band leaders to assume that as soon as you turn the drummer loose, the time goes out the window and the whole audience stops doing what it was doing. I mean, even as the drummer, I cringe when I see it happen. You got the whole place dancing to the songs and then you give it to the drummer and he starts doing stuff out of time that just alienates the party-goers and they stop dancing. Most times drum solos are just good party killers. I don't think enough drummers have studied the time keeping greats like Steve Jordan, or Benny Benjamin, or James Gadsen. All the kids do is idolize whoever plays the fastest with the most drums and it takes time to get them through that phase - so I'm not surprised band leaders pass over the drummer when it comes time for solos - the drummers job is to lay down the time for the band. I hate to say it, but that's usually the point where the time stops - the drum solo!
This.
I just don’t like drum solos… especially watching them. They bore me.
 
drum solos there's a span from

spinal tap thru... to gene krupa buddy rich.... thru mike shrieve clive bunker..... to elvin jones........to whatever recent 21st century stuff

drum solos you're sharing some secrets of the relationship you have with the drums; you're splaying them out to either the ether or an audience (or whomever whatever) It's the imagination of the relationship

you're making love to them alone (ha!
you're showing love lol..
talking to them
it's very interpersonal
intimate whispers thrashings and strokings) lol
and some mind games

dancing over the song form
 
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I’m starting to get pissed off.......... No, wait, it’s too late, I’ve been pissed off for a long time.

I play with a few bands as a sub for when their regular drummer can’t do the gig. And I hear over and over again, “our regular drummer does not do solos”.

Last night I played a gig and the audience wanted to hear “Wipe Out” by the Surfaris. I can play that song backwards and forwards. So we played it and I even tacked on a two minute solo near the end. The audience went wild! I even got TIP$ and special compliments handed to me at the end of the show. Here is what pisses me off. The other two drummers that play for this band refuse to play Wipe Out or do drum solos.

More and more I hear about drummers who won’t do drum solos. This is spoiling things for me. Band members and leaders very rarely allow me to do a solo, even when I ask them to. Usually they say OK good; and then forget about it while playing. Lots of times they give solos to everyone in the band including the bass player; then they skip the drummer. I love playing drum solos. The audiences love hearing them, especially while they are dancing. I’m not talking about those 20 minute solos that they used to do at big concerts. I’m just talking about a one or two verse solo, on tempo and during those funky songs or upbeat rock songs.

I find it hard to believe that a good drummer can’t or won’t play some accented eight or sixteenth notes around the kit for a few measures. I’M SORRY BUT IT JUST PISSES ME OFF!!!!


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That's the only kind of solos I *want* to do. If the people keep dancing, it's a win-win. I'd hate for everyone to stop dancing so they could stare at me for 10min. There's not a lot of long solos from even the "greats" that excite me. I could be wrong (probably am), but I can't recall a Gavin Harrison or Mike Portnoy solo. Everything they play is so fantastic, a solo would be superfluous.
 
To me a solo has to make sense with regards to where, when and why it happens.

I've got no problem playing longer solos in a jazz setting where the form still kind of dictates of where you're going with it and how "out there" you can get with it. Same thing in situations where there's a vamp underneath (whether actually played or just implied) in rock, funk and latin settings that you can play off of. In these situations you can play all kinds of nonsense and still keep the audience engaged in the flow of the tune.

A completely stand-alone drum solo...like, look and listen to me alone for x amount of time without any real reference points...no, thank you.
 
Solos without context are simply a bad song.

One of my favorites is to have the other musicians solo all within a short-ish number of bars then situate myself as the last soloist where I use 2 bars and sum up what has been said by the others as a transition to an ending.

Always seems that the more flagrant the crowd the more flagrant drum soloing they want/respond to.
 
I'll solo only If I have to, and it's a definable part of the song, I'll do my best to learn it and most importantly play it without botching it. The ending of Zeppelin's Rock and Roll is a good example. I've heard bands play that and just end it, or the drummer just do something at the end. Sadly, the solo at the end is as recognizable as the song, so unless the band just uses the end as a bridge to another song and cleanly pulls off the transition, it screams "out drummer sucks". Wipe Out....I had to play that one in HS Band after only a year of drumming. Can't imagine that being a song anyone would run away from outside of just hating the song....bad assumption, I know. Never thought about that song much.

I avoid songs with solos as much as I can, but with my previous bands, I harped on everyone else playing their parts correctly so much, it was pretty hard to say no, because I couldn't play the part. So far as an all out solo goes....no way. I've seen some killer solos and I can't even get close. The killer ones were all in time, picked up where the song stopped, had a "story" to tell, built up on the story, then ended sweetly. The crash, boom, bang go nowhere solos I hear others attempt is pretty much my solo skill level also and I don't want any part of it.
 
Sorry to hear about the girlfriend, that guy got what he deserved (I can't stand cowards who abuse those weaker than them).
I am glad your drums didn't get hurt.
MFer tried to stand on my 24’s back in the late 80’s and got the butt end of a 2B oak promark across his face
He then landed a pretty good right cross to my temple
We checked it right there.
High school rock band with my best bud lol
 
Wipe Out....I had to play that one in HS Band after only a year of drumming. Can't imagine that being a song anyone would run away from outside of just hating the song....bad assumption, I know. Never thought about that song much.

oh gawd...that horribly cliche version by the Soundpower Series from the late 70's. I was on tri toms, and was one of only 2 people in the drumline who could play it (my friend Bill on snare was the other one). I think we had to play that at least 200x every freaking quarter....just awful. And boring. But the masses wanted it, and some of those masses were cute girls, so.....

we eventuqlly had to make a "no Wipeout" rule, like "no Stairway...."
 
The ending of Zeppelin's Rock and Roll is a good example. I've heard bands play that and just end it, or the drummer just do something at the end. Sadly, the solo at the end is as recognizable as the song, so unless the band just uses the end as a bridge to another song and cleanly pulls off the transition, it screams "out drummer sucks".
I think it's always interesting to see how each musician resolves a situation personally, I like to be surprised.

For example, here I am playing a song that Tony Williams used to play, and both the rhythm and the solos are totally different from what he did when playing this song, the question was to solve "the problem" of playing it. Like when you go to one country or another and see how each culture solved the problem of building a house, from an igloo to a hut in a village, using the available materials and dealing with their own weather, situations and aesthetic.

* The video only lasts 48 seconds
* includes two choirs of time, and few short solos with kicks
* the sound of the recording is quite bad, the song is in 3/4
 
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I think it's always interesting to see how each musician resolves a situation personally, I like to be surprised.

For example, here I am playing a song that Tony Williams used to play, and both the rhythm and the solos are totally different from what he did when playing this song, the question was to solve "the problem" of playing it. Like when you go to one country or another and see how each culture solved the problem of building a house, from an igloo to a hut in a village, using the available materials and dealing with their own weather, situations and aesthetic.

* The video only las 48 seconds
* includes two choirs of time, and few short solos with kicks
* the sound of the recording is quite bad, the song is in 3/4
That's some great playing. I think with Jazz though, soloing is pretty much a requirement and doing your own rendition is even more so.
 
I'm personally not a fan. They typically don't sound very musical to me and shows of just skill tend to turn me off. In my head the drums aren't very interesting unless they're actually supporting music and have the backing of melody.

More and more they're being foisted upon me and I get through my section usually. There's a standing expectation of a maybe 8-16 bar solo for each player in a house band doing "stand by me" I have every week and my goal is to usually stay level headed and play something that at least rhythmically and hopefully sonically matches the song with some band hits in the middle to anchor.

What I do enjoy a lot more is choreographed whole band "going off" scenarios where we all do licks and fills that would normally be considered a little over the top, but because of the obvious whole band "build" it usually just gets the room going in a cool way, and more importantly for me, there's not one person carrying an extended solo section but everyone working together to be flashy in the context and form of the song. It ends up so much more musical and less awkward sounding to me. Did this last night to "ain't no sunshine" and it was waaay more fun than my dumb solo even if the audience maybe liked both.
 
I don't even consider Alex's example to be what I'm talking about. The whole band was going pretty close to full tilt, what he did stayed in the framework and was maybe just busier than the normal groove.

What I don't like is everyone dropping out and the drums just going on some extended jerk session which usually amounts to execution of rudiments and fast flashy stuff. Even worse I've watched other members in a band walk off stage and literally leave the drummer hanging to just either do some pre-contrived nonsense or flail about without band context.

Usually "jazz solos" on drums are a lot more musical and less flash anyway which is an oddity but I typically find they fit way better.
 
I’m starting to get pissed off.......... No, wait, it’s too late, I’ve been pissed off for a long time.

I play with a few bands as a sub for when their regular drummer can’t do the gig. And I hear over and over again, “our regular drummer does not do solos”.

Last night I played a gig and the audience wanted to hear “Wipe Out” by the Surfaris. I can play that song backwards and forwards. So we played it and I even tacked on a two minute solo near the end. The audience went wild! I even got TIP$ and special compliments handed to me at the end of the show. Here is what pisses me off. The other two drummers that play for this band refuse to play Wipe Out or do drum solos.

More and more I hear about drummers who won’t do drum solos. This is spoiling things for me. Band members and leaders very rarely allow me to do a solo, even when I ask them to. Usually they say OK good; and then forget about it while playing. Lots of times they give solos to everyone in the band including the bass player; then they skip the drummer. I love playing drum solos. The audiences love hearing them, especially while they are dancing. I’m not talking about those 20 minute solos that they used to do at big concerts. I’m just talking about a one or two verse solo, on tempo and during those funky songs or upbeat rock songs.

I find it hard to believe that a good drummer can’t or won’t play some accented eight or sixteenth notes around the kit for a few measures. I’M SORRY BUT IT JUST PISSES ME OFF!!!!


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I refuse. Not on principle, but suck at it! Watching pro's (Tommy Aldridge, others) Talent at solos pisses me off.. I suck!
 
I've played drums 62 years, I didn't have the chops and experience and authority to solo til I'd played around 25 years.
I can play the old school solos, got funk, 5/4 and trading fours or song-form solos and I do prefer a little help percussion-wise from the band, if only chucking deadened strings.
 
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