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  #1  
Old 03-12-2019, 03:20 PM
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Default Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Another thread gave me the idea for this one. Is there anything that you feel is simple and yet you struggle with it even though you've been playing a while?

For example, I've been playing drums for about 25 years now, and I still struggle with tuning at times...especially the snare. I tend to overtigthen the heads and the strainer, then I sit there and wonder why my snare sounds choked out.

[digression] The snare at my church is REALLY dialed in darn-near perfect, so I took my drum dial in there and measured the tension. The top head is set at 85, and the reso is at 73. I tuned three of my snares to the same settings, loosened the strainers, and they sound great! [/digression]

By now, I should be able to tune with my eyes shut, so to speak; however, I feel like it's the first time I've done it.

How about you? Is there something out there that you struggle with in terms of playing or maintaining your equipment that should be simple?
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Old 03-12-2019, 04:00 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Yeah, tuning wise I'm very much trial-and-error, minimum viable product.

I struggle with playing confidently. Like you, I must be approaching 25 years, nearly 10 years pro, and I still over think it sometimes. It really shows in some of my solo playing.
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  #3  
Old 03-12-2019, 04:12 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I struggled with a beat recently. It's supposed to be quarter notes on the high hat, with a very busy bass drum part. I could play it with eighth notes no problem, but quarter notes were impossible at first.

It made me wonder if drummers have a leading limb - kind of hard to explain.
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Old 03-12-2019, 04:26 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I struggle composing original part & fills on original music. My drumming vocabulary is limited, and it shows when I try to make fresh sounds.
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Old 03-12-2019, 04:28 PM
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  #5  
Old 03-12-2019, 04:33 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

35 years of playing and tuning still doesnít come naturally. Iím fine with finding the right tone, so long as batter and reso are tuned the same. Trying to find that same fundamental note wit either side higher/lower takes way too long. I eventually get there, but itís just not worth the hassle without tuning aids. Probably because I donít really know what each note sounds like having never played horns or strings.

Fills are the other thing. Iíve never been captain fancy pants, so complicated fills take a ton of work to figure out. Iíve been working hard on these lately and finally see some confident executions, but I guess 35 years of not playing enough variety didnít force me to grow. Thatís changing now. Drums used to be a way of popping off steam and it was fine for years. Itís all I ever really had time for, but Iíve been really focusing on trying to master the instrument.

Drums have been getting more fun by the minute since!
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Old 03-12-2019, 04:45 PM
Swissward Flamtacles Swissward Flamtacles is offline
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

How I usually replace a resonant head on a snare:
- rotate it a bit to make sure it sits nicely on the bearing edge
- put hoop onto the drum and repeat
- insert tension rods and make sure they are in line with the lugs
- finger tighten tension rods
- continue with a drum key

- realize that the gap in the hoop is nowhere near the strainer
- go back to step 1
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  #7  
Old 03-12-2019, 04:53 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I still really struggle putting snare wires back after replacing a snare-side head or replacing with new snare wires. I always think, 'I need someone to hold the other end while I attach this end.' And that's what I usually do!
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  #8  
Old 03-12-2019, 05:02 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

My equipment is very simple, so not much there.

Tuning isn't muhch of an issue either.

I will however struggle a bit with anything new or a style I haven't played for a while.

I move my kit around more now and change a few things regularly. That's probably part of the reason why I've started dropping my sticks a lot again. Might also be related to me playing much more and right now not really stopping when I'm tired.
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  #9  
Old 03-12-2019, 05:15 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

After decades of playing with no hearing protection I struggle to hear. I'm old too so I struggle to remember. LOL. I struggle starting off songs-like a mental apprehension I can't seem to beat worried I'll screw it up (you can often be your own worse enemy). That arises sometimes learning new songs-some part can just jump out and bite you as a mental block. I guess more like "drummer anxiety" -Oh no don't screw that up. I struggle with fills too-in fact more and more I like accent on toms rather than drum rolls on toms (but I like in practice playing doubles, triples and rudiments on toms-I don't like to play them with music more and more for some reason-I don't know if that is good or bad)? I struggle with sticking with my double pedal long enough to gain much success. I struggle with poor technique but I don't know if I can fix it at this late date-old habits and all. I struggle with solos but I generally don't like them-though there are some exceptions. I struggle with a bad temper and it can get the better of me so I fear I'm going to mouth off and get my butt kicked-I'm old I don't think I can back it up anymore LOL. Well there's a start to my struggles but I don't want to bore you with the rest.
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Old 03-12-2019, 05:33 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

For years I struggled with getting my shuffle feeling good and confident. So I joined a blues band - talk about jumping off the deep end!

Now I feel great about my regular shuffle. I'm still very insecure and hesitant with my half-time shuffle, though. I end up playing the hi-hat with both hands; if I try to do it with just the right hand, it becomes a spectacular train wreck within a couple of measures. More practice, I guess!
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Old 03-12-2019, 05:53 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Somebody said in an interview posted on here months ago that the last thing a drummer learns is confidence. Very profound, and true...
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  #12  
Old 03-12-2019, 06:39 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
Somebody said in an interview posted on here months ago that the last thing a drummer learns is confidence. Very profound, and true...
Very true, and I think in this YouTube age it is probably even more difficult because all we see are all these chops drummers and there's less opportunity to go out and play in a lot of ways than there used to be.
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  #13  
Old 03-12-2019, 06:54 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Very true, and I think in this YouTube age it is probably even more difficult because all we see are all these chops drummers and there's less opportunity to go out and play in a lot of ways than there used to be.
YouTube makes almost everyone else look like incompetent schmucks. It’s easy to forget all the different angles and camera shots make it so easy to take out flubs and insert perfectly executed parts. The more pizzazz the more opportunity to fix things.

You then get one guy posting something 99% accurate with one take and they get shredded, because they didn’t meet the fake standards. I also feel this “standard” is partly responsible for live gigs dying. Tough to compete with all the “top performances,” when everyone expects a band to provide the same level of performances others have posted on YouTube.
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  #14  
Old 03-12-2019, 06:55 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Jeez, this would be a very long list. I have days when I feel like I can do nothing wrong, and days when I feel like I just got started. :)
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  #15  
Old 03-12-2019, 07:38 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Somebody said in an interview posted on here months ago that the last thing a drummer learns is confidence. Very profound, and true...
Ha, ha, ha, ha.. That is true-probably the reason I have "anxiety"- the root problem-well that and I generally suck LOL.
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  #16  
Old 03-12-2019, 11:47 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I struggle with composing a drum part. When somebody comes to me with a new song, or maybe just a new chord progression and wants me to create a drum track then I feel awkward. I can play some typical overused drum groove but I really want to create something better.
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  #17  
Old 03-13-2019, 12:46 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I struggle with not overplaying. When I record myself playing and listen back I wonder why I felt the need to add in modulation, displacement, and linear chops all over the place. At the time it feels great and I am having fun.

Playing slow is another one. I like to play fast and fill up space. See first comment.

Almost 25 years in and I over tighten my snare too. I have started dialing back the resos as well with good results. my 12 inch tom is also a pain. I can get the 10,14 and 16 to sound amazing quick.
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  #18  
Old 03-13-2019, 12:59 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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I struggle with not overplaying. When I record myself playing and listen back I wonder why I felt the need to add in modulation, displacement, and linear chops all over the place. At the time it feels great and I am having fun.

Playing slow is another one. I like to play fast and fill up space. See first comment.
I too have these same issues. Playing slower has gotten easier, but sometimes hurts my brain. When just playing a groove, sometimes I feel compelled to insert stuff that had no business being there. If I don't keep myself in check, my practice/playing time turns into Solos 101.
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Old 03-13-2019, 11:27 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Bass players................I'm here all week!
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Old 03-13-2019, 05:54 PM
Dan Knowlton Dan Knowlton is offline
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Bass players................I'm here all week!
Well...speaking as a bassist and drummer I would say it is drummers overplaying and not being able to keep time. As a drummer and a bassist, I would say it is the band leader not being able to clearly describe what he is trying to do in a song!
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  #21  
Old 03-13-2019, 06:36 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Only things I haven't practiced like I should.

Edit: after all these years I'm still struggling with losing my sticks because as I move around the kit they get snagged on a splash or ride cymbal.
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  #22  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:00 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Well...speaking as a bassist and drummer I would say it is drummers overplaying and not being able to keep time. As a drummer and a bassist, I would say it is the band leader not being able to clearly describe what he is trying to do in a song!
Wow, first post and it's a bite welcome to drummer world! I'm gonna hedge my bets and say you're 100% bassist seeing as you missed the joke.

The sarcasm was as obvious as a galloping horse. That's what gave the bassist bit away. How's the colouring in book or did you eat all the crayons?

Are you aware of rule number 2?
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:07 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

"Correct" grip.
Double stroke rolls.
Burying the beater.
Breathing right.
Tuning.

All symptoms of being self-taught... I wasn't even aware that some of these were issues until I started perusing DW a few years ago.
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  #24  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:09 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

5/4... i can play 4/4 or 3/4 all night no issues.. fast or slow.. but soon as i hit 5/4 i get thrown off like i'm on a mechanical bull. In all fairness though i haven't worked on it enough to complain, my own laziness is why i suck after all this time :)

In perfect strangers there are 2 parts the go into 5/4 and every now and then i nail it, most of the time though.. Stumble stumble &*@!$!!!!

P.S. My right arm locking up on fast long hi-hat parts.. I raised my hats a bit and it's helped but still can't go more than 10-15 minutes non-stop without having issues.
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  #25  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:10 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
"Correct" grip.
Double stroke rolls.
Burying the beater.
Breathing right.
Tuning.

All symptoms of being self-taught... I wasn't even aware that some of these were issues until I started perusing DW a few years ago.
Nothing wrong with burying the beater, a teacher used to give me hell for it, then Jim Riley talked about how he burys it and as long as you get the sound you want and it works who cares :)

If i try not burying it i end up doing random unwanted doubles and triples..
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  #26  
Old 03-13-2019, 07:13 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
"Correct" grip.
As long as the sticks aren't being dropped a lot, I say do what's most comfortable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
Double stroke rolls.
Besides playing at church, I can't remember the last time I had to use a double-stroke roll in a band situation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
Burying the beater.
Do it with pride.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
Breathing right.
As long as you aren't dying, who cares?

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Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
Tuning.
I STILL struggle with this. No shame in it.
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  #27  
Old 03-13-2019, 08:09 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I'm told that I still struggle to load the dishwasher properly. Apparently one of my big problems is that I don't fully wash the dishes before I put them in. After all these years you'd think I'd have it down, but I've been informed this isn't the case.
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  #28  
Old 03-13-2019, 10:31 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Hitting the splash cymbal immediately after the joke.

It's kind of schmaltzy, that's probably why I'm not always eager to do it, but people expect it.

I just got a new dishwasher, and it says to not pre rinse.

I'm having a hard time following through with that.
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Old 03-14-2019, 05:49 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

playing slow, near below 100 bpm
leave the spaces in while playing slow
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Old 03-15-2019, 04:02 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

STILL TO THIS DAY... I struggle with speeding up the beat when coming out of a fill. And!!! Playing super slow beats. Why do I bother. They just kill me. Aargh!!!
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  #31  
Old 03-15-2019, 02:40 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Closed double stroke rolls. I have a clean open roll at lower tempos, but at some point it turns into a buzz roll. It's like flipping a switch. And I got nothing in between. I couldn't play a decent double stroke roll at 120 to save my life.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mustion View Post
Somebody said in an interview posted on here months ago that the last thing a drummer learns is confidence. Very profound, and true...
I'm not a confident drummer, but I play one on stage. Pretending helps. If you can fool everyone else, maybe you can fool yourself, a little bit.
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  #32  
Old 03-15-2019, 03:14 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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STILL TO THIS DAY... I struggle with speeding up the beat when coming out of a fill. And!!! Playing super slow beats. Why do I bother. They just kill me. Aargh!!!
I hate playing with a metronome because they always slow down at the chorus.
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Old 03-15-2019, 08:45 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Closed double stroke rolls. I have a clean open roll at lower tempos, but at some point it turns into a buzz roll.
What is a closed double stroke roll to you? From my understanding, an open roll is doubles and a closed roll is a press/buzz roll.

What really helped clean up my doubles was practicing Chapin's method of accenting the second stroke. I call it "hechando gordas" because it reminds me of the rhythm my Nana would make with her hands when she made tortillas. Like so: rR lL rR lL...ect..
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Old 03-15-2019, 08:47 PM
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What really helped clean up my doubles was practicing Chapin's method of accenting the second stroke. I call it "hechando gordas" because it reminds me of the rhythm my Nana would make with her hands when she made tortillas. Like so: rR lL rR lL...ect..
That really works, eh? I've been meaning to try that ever since seeing the Chapin video (which, by the way, is amazing).
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Old 03-15-2019, 10:23 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Double bass drum strikes...you know..single foot "da da" in quick succession. Been playing a year now and still no closer to getting it.
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  #36  
Old 03-16-2019, 06:57 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Double bass drum strikes...you know..single foot "da da" in quick succession. Been playing a year now and still no closer to getting it.
Try using your ankle. Get the first hit with your toes then drop your foot for the second. You can do it in reverse too if you'd like.
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Old 03-16-2019, 09:59 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Try using your ankle. Get the first hit with your toes then drop your foot for the second. You can do it in reverse too if you'd like.
Hey thanks...thats a really simple clear explanation, I'll try it today.
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  #38  
Old 03-16-2019, 11:02 AM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

I still can't bury the beater into the bass drum without beater dribble.
I can't play match grip because I put too much emphasis on reinventing my traditional grip.
I hate tuning. But I like playing on tuned drums. I found the TuneBot last year and it's solving this issue.
I haven't mastered brushes yet. Although I just started on Ed Soph's method.
I can't do the stick twirls that alot of drummers can do. But I can balance a drumstick on my finger and put it to my nose and take it back. (What else are you going to work on while wittling time away during marching band rehearsals?)
I think I have a complex when watching drummers play from the audience perspective. Somehow drumming looks twice as hard from the front than from behind. But it's a good complex to have since it makes me work harder.
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Old 03-16-2019, 02:42 PM
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Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

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Originally Posted by rhumbagirl View Post
I still can't bury the beater into the bass drum without beater dribble.
I can't play match grip because I put too much emphasis on reinventing my traditional grip.
I hate tuning. But I like playing on tuned drums. I found the TuneBot last year and it's solving this issue.
I haven't mastered brushes yet. Although I just started on Ed Soph's method.
I can't do the stick twirls that alot of drummers can do. But I can balance a drumstick on my finger and put it to my nose and take it back. (What else are you going to work on while wittling time away during marching band rehearsals?)
I think I have a complex when watching drummers play from the audience perspective. Somehow drumming looks twice as hard from the front than from behind. But it's a good complex to have since it makes me work harder.
I had the same issue with the bass dribble.. i switched to a bomber beater and no more issue and i LOVE the sound more than a normal beater...
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  #40  
Old 03-17-2019, 12:40 AM
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Fishnmusicn Fishnmusicn is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Norristown,Pa USA
Posts: 234
Default Re: Are there simple things you struggle with even though you've been playing a while?

Looks like confidence is a common issue here with drummers in general ( or some ). I can identify. I also play keyboard and guitar and have never had the insecurity I get with them as I do when playing drums - never, I can get it or I can suck. Overplaying has always been a problem for me. The last band I was in was for most parts my last shot at giving it a go. Old friends involved and the like. Unfortunately, my good buddy ( an old friend) the lead guitarist had MS which got worse, and the keyboard player was going through a divorce and couldn't make practice, and it all came undone. It was a depressing time for months afterwards, as the band was beginning to gel, and my role had a lot of input. As I'm getting older, I still relish playing just for fun on my E-kit and will most likely be searching out a drum circle to get something creative going. The last band had a stationery kit there at the practice space which made it a breeze not to lug back and forth. I'd be real lucky to find another band like that, but you never know. I still say, once a drummer, always a drummer, and if it feels good to you, then enjoy it for as long as you can :)
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