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Dynamic Shaping

Posted by on Mar 7, 2019 in Technique, Vocabulary | 0 comments

One of Brian Blade’s many devices that makes his approach so captivating. Luckily, it’s something we can all adopt fairly easily.

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5 Minute Jazz Hands @ 120 BPM

Posted by on Mar 19, 2018 in Technique | 2 comments

This is the goal tempo. This takes exactly 5 minutes to complete (minus my yapping at the intro, yada yada yada).

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5 Minute Jazz Hands @ 110 BPM

Posted by on Mar 8, 2018 in Technique | 0 comments

We take another trip up the metronome to 110 BPM. It’s basically 6-ish minute jazz hands at this tempo, but we’re almost there…

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5 Minute Jazz Hands @ 100 BPM

Posted by on Feb 27, 2018 in Technique | 0 comments

Let’s bump the metronome up 10 clicks as we march toward 120 BPM.

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5 Minute Jazz Hands: Intro and 90 BPM

Posted by on Feb 20, 2018 in Technique | 2 comments

For years I’ve been struggling to find an all-encompassing warmup that doesn’t take too long. So I created one that gets me fully ready to play in just 5 minutes, and also warms me up using language and rudiments I’ll end up using on my gigs.

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The Dribbling Game

Posted by on Nov 28, 2017 in Technique | 4 comments

Finger control is one of the hardest things to develop. It’s the final frontier of hand technique. But before worrying about working through pages and pages of 16th note exercises, try approaching it like you probably approached your favorite sport as a kid.

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Brush Comping Within the Time

Posted by on Oct 2, 2017 in Technique | 5 comments

Toni is one of our members, and he’s struggling with how to comp more on the brushes with it messing up his brush pattern. Here’s how I solved that riddle

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The Philly Joe Jones “Gallop”

Posted by on Sep 18, 2017 in Technique | 0 comments

Ever wonder how great drummers like Philly Joe Jones can play brushes so freakin’ fast?? Well, he’s got a little secret.

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Rolls Part 2: Press Roll

Posted by on Sep 4, 2017 in Technique | 0 comments

Now that we’ve looked into the buzz (or “closed”) roll, the next step is to apply some pressure. Hence, the “press” roll. Blakey did it best…

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Rolls Part 1: Buzz Roll

Posted by on Aug 22, 2017 in Technique | 0 comments

There’s lot of confusion about the difference between a buzz roll and a press roll (are they the same thing??). I’m gonna break down the differences, and how to execute them. First, let’s start with the buzz roll:

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Directional Brushes: Vertical, Diagonal, & Horizontal

Posted by on Jul 3, 2017 in Technique | 0 comments

Brushes afford us the opportunity to create 3-dimensional (as I like to call it) sounds with phrases we already know. And it’s all about direction.

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Comping Grid

Posted by on May 15, 2017 in Technique | 0 comments

Here’s a sequence I use to either work out a technique issue, or to run through a new ostinato.

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The Elvin “Sweep” (Lesson Request)

Posted by on Apr 8, 2016 in Technique | 0 comments

Jim asked for some more Elvin. That’s a request I can’t ignore!

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MD Series: The Other Half, Parts 1 & 2

Posted by on Mar 10, 2016 in Technique | 0 comments

In the second article I published in Modern Drummer, I addressed a technique issue that many have to deal with when making the switch from playing contemporary grooves (pop, funk, country, etc) to playing swing. Swing uses the “Other Half.”

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Doubles on the Floor Tom (Lesson Request)

Posted by on Feb 11, 2016 in Technique | 1 comment

This is a common issue we all have to work on. I delve into how I practice it, but pay close attention at the end when I break down WHY I like practicing it this way.

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Footloose: Heel Up Hi-Hat Technique

Posted by on Jul 16, 2015 in Technique | 1 comment

I got a request for some lessons on hi-hat technique, so I wanted to start with the Heel Up method. I play this one a lot and I’ll show you why, as well as some of the issues you might be having with it and how to correct them.

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Down-Up Stroke on the Hi-Hat

Posted by on Apr 23, 2015 in Technique | 4 comments

Here’s a Member Request Video, where I explain how to use a Down/Up Stroke to play faster patterns on the Hi-Hat. I’m big on being able to break up the accents in this stroke so that it doesn’t get monotonous. In this lesson I show some of the ways I’ve found useful to make it sound musical and relaxed.

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Rudimental Ritual, Part 10: The Complete Rudimental Ritual

Posted by on Dec 19, 2014 in Technique | 0 comments

This is the final segment of the Rudimental Ritual. We cover the end of the Chops Builders section with a flurry of flams. Like, 15,000 of them. If you’ve made it this far, congratulations!

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Rudimental Ritual, Part 9: Chops Builders

Posted by on Dec 9, 2014 in Technique | 0 comments

FINAL SECTION!! We break this up into two parts (as usual) so that leaves us on the cusp of completing the Ritual.

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One Handed Buzz Roll Trick

Posted by on Nov 25, 2014 in Technique | 3 comments

In trying to work more buzz rolls into my playing, I discovered this little move that helped smooth out my buzz when I play it one-handed.

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