Ultimate independence: playing unrelated tempos on different limbs?

T-1000

Senior Member
Has any world-class pro been able to, for example, play 16th notes at 151bpm on left foot, 16th notes at 156bpm on left foot, 16th notes at 33bpm on right hand and 16th notes at 276bpm on left hand all at the same time, and just loop it over and over continuously for multiple minutes (or hours?) at a time?

To me, that would be ultimate independence. Let's forget about whether it's a 'musical' thing to do and just think of it academically.

It just means you're able to keep 4 separate internal metronomes going simultaneously without relying on any patterns of relationship between them. When there are relationships between two different tempos, playing them together is a lot easier (for example, tempo x is twice as fast as tempo y), but if there is no relationship between the tempos, you cannot rely on one being a 'frame of reference' for the other(s) and you truly have to be able to play them independently.
 

Al Strange

Well-known member
I’ve never played whilst intoxicated but I imagine that is the sound you’re talking about? 😂 As long as it feels good there are no rules, but you’d have to be superman to be able to do that deliberately with each limb?:unsure:(y):)
 
Nobody plays one-handed 16ths at 276 bpm. This type of independence would also make you as a musician independent (no more calls from other musicians :p )
I remember Pete York talking about a drummer who slowed down with his feet while speeding up with his hands, but that's the closest things I can remember.
 

Al Strange

Well-known member
Nobody plays one-handed 16ths at 276 bpm. This type of independence would also make you as a musician independent (no more calls from other musicians :p )
I remember Pete York talking about a drummer who slowed down with his feet while speeding up with his hands, but that's the closest things I can remember.
Yeah, Mr Lang can do that!! (y) :D
 

Old PIT Guy

Well-known member
As part of either the 3rd or 4th semester test at PIT, circa '86, you had to perform a polyrhythm of your choosing using 4 limbs. I came up with some hokey thing in 12/8 that consisted of 3 over 4 between hi-hat and BD, with the right hand playing a 3 pattern (1..5..9) on the bell and the left hand playing the 'backbeat' on beats 4 and 10. I passed that portion of the test with it, but never used anything like it again. Its value was entirely from the process of constructing it and playing it cleanly. I may get back to that sort of thing one day if I live long enough, since it'll give my worn-out hands a break!
 

T-1000

Senior Member
As part of either the 3rd or 4th semester test at PIT, circa '86, you had to perform a polyrhythm of your choosing using 4 limbs. I came up with some hokey thing in 12/8 that consisted of 3 over 4 between hi-hat and BD, with the right hand playing a 3 pattern (1..5..9) on the bell and the left hand playing the 'backbeat' on beats 4 and 10. I passed that portion of the test with it, but never used anything like it again. Its value was entirely from the process of constructing it and playing it cleanly. I may get back to that sort of thing one day if I live long enough, since it'll give my worn-out hands a break!
Impressive as that probably was, you could still map it out on a grid, and you could still learn it by figuring out the different patterns' relationship to each other. But playing in unrelated tempos on different limbs is another ballgame altogether because there is no pattern to relate one tempo to another; they never line up.
 

Old Dog new Cans

Senior Member
I saw a video of someone. . .Maybe Lang, at some point in the last month-ish. The guy started a roll--fast (hands) very gradually slowed the tempo. At the same time he starts slow on the double bass and gradually speeds up. They meet in the middle then he slows the hands and increases the foot speed to a double stroke roll. Uhhhm, it was one of the neatest things I've ever seen, lol. It really was impressive.

I'm not even going to try to describe my Lack of independence. I still argue with my left foot on a regular basis when I play. :rolleyes:
 

Al Strange

Well-known member
I saw a video of someone. . .Maybe Lang, at some point in the last month-ish. The guy started a roll--fast (hands) very gradually slowed the tempo. At the same time he starts slow on the double bass and gradually speeds up. They meet in the middle then he slows the hands and increases the foot speed to a double stroke roll. Uhhhm, it was one of the neatest things I've ever seen, lol. It really was impressive.

I'm not even going to try to describe my Lack of independence. I still argue with my left foot on a regular basis when I play. :rolleyes:
If it smells like Lang, looks like Lang, and sounds like Lang...it’s probably a Lang! 😂 (y)
 

toddbishop

Platinum Member
I thought this was to be a thread on ultimate drumming independence: writing the great Russian novel with my right hand, while translating Goethe with my left, dictating some kinda science theorem with my voice, running a triathlon with my right foot, and winning the World Cup with my left, while doing some Baryshnikov with both feet combined. that'd be awesome. I'm going to work on my paradiddles and, you know, build up to that

UPDATE: I'm actually going to do it without practicing. Can't get much more ultimate than that.
 
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Jeff Almeyda

Senior Consultant
Has any world-class pro been able to, for example, play 16th notes at 151bpm on left foot, 16th notes at 156bpm on left foot, 16th notes at 33bpm on right hand and 16th notes at 276bpm on left hand all at the same time, and just loop it over and over continuously for multiple minutes (or hours?) at a time?

To me, that would be ultimate independence. Let's forget about whether it's a 'musical' thing to do and just think of it academically.

It just means you're able to keep 4 separate internal metronomes going simultaneously without relying on any patterns of relationship between them. When there are relationships between two different tempos, playing them together is a lot easier (for example, tempo x is twice as fast as tempo y), but if there is no relationship between the tempos, you cannot rely on one being a 'frame of reference' for the other(s) and you truly have to be able to play them independently.
Ok, first off, this is insane lol.

But I underlined a point you make in your post for a reason.

Every set of tempos (or numbers) have a relationship between then and every pair of looping different tempos will eventually resolve..

The relationship might be 1.56345 to 1 and it might take 114 beats to resolve but it will happen eventually.

As par as independence that does not rely on counting the relationship between note rates goes, Dennis Chambers does an independence thing where he plays an ostinato with his feet and the jazz ride pattern over it. The feet stay at the same tempo and the jazz ride patterns starts slow and smoothly accelerates until it's blistering.

One of the purest examples of independence I've even seen.

Mangini was in the audience and he was the first to get up and applaud when it was over.

It was in a movie that was filmed with a bunch of world class drummers hanging out in a cabin with a bunch of students. Forgot the name of the movie.
 

Hewitt2

Senior Member
Ok, first off, this is insane lol.

But I underlined a point you make in your post for a reason.

Every set of tempos (or numbers) have a relationship between then and every pair of looping different tempos will eventually resolve..

The relationship might be 1.56345 to 1 and it might take 114 beats to resolve but it will happen eventually.

As par as independence that does not rely on counting the relationship between note rates goes, Dennis Chambers does an independence thing where he plays an ostinato with his feet and the jazz ride pattern over it. The feet stay at the same tempo and the jazz ride patterns starts slow and smoothly accelerates until it's blistering.

One of the purest examples of independence I've even seen.

Mangini was in the audience and he was the first to get up and applaud when it was over.

It was in a movie that was filmed with a bunch of world class drummers hanging out in a cabin with a bunch of students. Forgot the name of the movie.
A drummer’s dream. Portions of it are still available on YouTube I believe.
 
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