How To Play Drums – The Only Basic Techniques You Need To Know!
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There are lots of musicians, including you, that would love to learn how to play drums. Its no surprise as drummers are in high demand these days and drums is one of the most popular instruments in the world.
The basic techniques are all you need to learn drums, but before that, we are going to talk about a lot more than techniques. This is because learning to play drums can take a while if the player isn’t familiar with some basic parts and rudiments. However, constant practice habits of learning rhythm and rudiments would help boost your play in no time!
GETTING FAMILIAR WITH THE INSTRUMENT
There are a lot of players today, even some highly skilled ones, who know nothing about the hardware of drums. It is sad to see skilled players struggling to tell what is good or bad on a drums set, or even what the names of some parts are.
Some players are so terrible that they can even fix some minor faults on the drums! All this is because they are not familiar with the parts of the drums or they are too lazy to take out the time and learn it.
You should make sure that you get to know the types of drums, drum heads, drums sizes, cymbal types and sizes, and the necessary accessories that every drummer needs.
LEARNING TIME SIGNATURES
Time signatures are the most important thing to learn on a drums set. As a drummer, you are responsible for keeping the time of everyone in the band.
Your grooves tell the entire story of the time signature, tempo, and genre of song you or your band is playing. So, ensure that you learn everything about the time signatures. The most common time signature is the 4/4 time signature.
Basically, most hip hop songs use this time. Other time signatures are 6/8 , 5/4, and 7/8, just to name a few. The basic way of counting the 4 beats in a 4/4 time signature is the same way you count normal numbers 1, 2, 3, 4.
This is where the action begins. All the time signatures and names of hardware would make you feel like you are in school.
No drummer likes writing and reading over playing drums. It’s drums! And it’s full of ACTION! There are tons of grooves you can learn, and the internet has made a lot of free materials available to all.
However, what you need to learn in grooves is the genre of the song. Your groove gives your listeners an 80% clue of the genre of song you are playing. Learn simple rock grooves, funk grooves, trap grooves, and a bit of ballad, and you would be fine for a start.
Rudiments are the most necessary part of learning how to play drums. Every drummer that can’t play at least one rudiment must learn one as soon as possible.
Before you learn rudiments, make sure you are familiar with time signatures like the quarter note, eighth note, 16th note, 32nd note, and 64th note. The eight note is counted as “1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and” and the loop goes again and again.
16th notes are counted as “1 e and a 2 e and a 3 e and a 4 e and a” and the loop goes again. Note that the numbers indicate the accents of the beats in four notes. Once you are good with that, you can start with the single stroke roll rudiment.
Other rudiments include paradiddles, 6 stroke roll, double stroke roll, Swiss flam, flam tap, and much more.
APPLYING DYNAMICS TO RUDIMENTS
As you learn each rudiment, you should try to incorporate some dynamics to the rudiment. Dynamics means that you should learn to play the rudiment all over the drums.
Learn to play the rudiment on one part of the drum, then move to another part, and move to another random part as you interchange parts randomly, then play it on two parts of the drums together.
APPLYING RUDIMENTS TO GROOVES
Once you can move around the drums with the rudiments, you should learn to play it in a groove you are learning. Rudiments make grooves sound sweeter – no buts about it! Especially if you have mastered ghosting some notes.
PRACTICING WITH A METRONOME
The last part of our discussion is playing with a metronome. A metronome helps you learn to keep time as well as teach you the diverse types of time signatures. It is very useful, especially for studio drummers. However, make sure you are always on time. A lot of live performances these days use loops and metronomes!