September 30th, 2017

Basics #5: Beat Placements

The idea of using beat placements as a way to practice just about any rhythmic figure was taught to me by Trevor Tomkins while I was at Guildhall, but you can find something similar in Benny Greb's material, and Jim Blackley makes use of a similar idea especially with accents, in Syncopated Rolls.

The idea is both simple and complex, so I've included the master sheet and then an example so you can see how it works. Take any rhythmic comping idea and practice putting it in different places in the bar while playing jazz time. It is a very systematic approach and covers all the possibilities. Each bar should be practiced many times over before moving to the next one. Once you are comfortable with this start mixing the bars/placements to create comping patterns and try with other figures such as those from basics #4 and basics #2. This will build your comping vocabulary.

Jazz Drumming Basics #5, Jazz beat placemenst Jazz Drumming Basics #5, Jazz beat placements example
Filed Under : Jazz Drumming: Basics
August 16th, 2017

Basics #4: Triplet Comping

One of the quintessential elements of jazz drumming is triplet comping, something used heavily by people like Elvin Jones. This usually means filling in the remaining triplets between each quarter note with the snare drum and/or bass drum. The worksheet shows you how to count each beat, "1-trip-let" "2-trip-let", how the notes line up in the different parts, and where to place the comping note. Work on this slowly, while counting a loud and make sure it is led by the cymbal. These figures should sit lightly below the cymbal line and give it some forward momentum. Don't drown the cymbal in loud comping patterns! Listen to Coltrane Plays the Blues for some Elvin examples of these patterns, and more, in use.

Jazz Drumming, Triplet Comping
Filed Under : Jazz Drumming: Basics



Jun 9th, 2017

Idea #35: Mixed Grouping Fills

Here you'll find a collection of exercises for fills or licks incorporating the bass drum wth the hands. What I hope you find interesting is the 16th-note groupings - a group of 4, then two groups of 6 - which sound pretty hip. a. is the basic figure; b. is a voicing around the kit; c. is the figure reversed. In the pdf you'll find an exercise with a single kick, and the third exercise shifts between triplets and 16ths - two beats of each. There are plenty of ways to go with this from here. Find your own voicings, then try changing the order - 6/4/6. We can explore some odd note groupings another time.

Jazz Drumming Idea #35, Jazz Drumming, Around the drum kit
Filed Under : Jazz Drumming: Ideas
Mar 9th, 2017

Idea #34: Triplet Hand Co-ordination

This is the triplet version, more for jazz time playing, of an idea from a long time ago which you can now find in the Ideas for Jazz Drumming e-book. It works on hand co-ordination, but the unisons are very important - no flamming! Play with a feathered bass on all four and hi-hat on 2 and 4. You can voice the hands between the cymbal and the snare, but also try other sounds. Start slow.

Jazz Drumming Idea #34, Jazz Drumming, Hand Co-ordination
Filed Under : Jazz Drumming: Ideas

Idea #33: 7 beat comping ideas

Basics #3/Idea #32: Triplet Flow

Idea #31: 5 over 4 Paradiddles

Idea #30: Five Beat Comping

Idea #29: Hand to Foot Control

Idea #28: Advanced Comping

Claudio Slon: Captain Bacardi

Basics #2: Beginning Jazz Comping

Idea #27: Rolls at different tempos

Idea #26: Stick Control

Idea #25.3: The Other - Extensions

Idea #25.2: The Other - Phrases and Unisons

Idea #25.1: Other simple phrase