Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Another Day, Another Rant

Hi folks,
I've been  perusing social media lately ( always a treacherous thing for me ) and I keep running into references to Max Roach. Awesome right? Except that these people seem to always focus on how fast he can play. Mr. Roach certainly could play with a lot of velocity, but to focus on that is getting such a tiny part of the picture. One of the catalysts for all this discussion seems to be this album.  ( I'm just focusing on the track "Figure Eights", but you get the idea. )

In all honesty,  I love both Buddy and Max but this album really represents a lot of what I hate about how drums are presented. The "drum battle ' usually focuses on technique and doesn't take into account feel, sound, ideas, etc. So folks were talking about how Buddy won on this album. THERE IS NO WINNING OR LOSING IN MUSIC, THIS IS ART!

Buddy is great.
Max is great.
We have much to learn from both of them
End of story


Okay, to end on a positive note and as a palette cleanser. ( You van find many better performances from Rich and Roach elsewhere ) here's the recently departed John Abercrombie with Michael Brecker, Marc Johnson, and Peter Erskine playing Johnson's wonderful "Samurai Hee Haw". Enjoy.

See? Music is wonderful when it isn't a competition!

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Friday, August 18, 2017

Short and sweet with Stewart Copeland

A couple of very illuminating videos with Stewart Copeland. He was the first non-Jazz player to really inspire me to follow my own path. He's very witty as well.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

The information is only the beginning

Hey folks,
 Been practicing a to of piano for some gigs so I thought I'd dig into a bit of this video by the wonderful Keith Carlock.....

Great stuff. But when I recently started getting a chance to work on it, I tried the following variations. ( P.S. I tried all of these while singing " I Remember You" in my head.)

1. The lick as triplets.
2. The lick with a two-stroke buzz at the end rather than the doubles.
3. keeping 2 & 4 on the hi-hat during the above examples.
3. Substituting the bass drum for hi-hat in the lick. ( This can be quite challenging starting with the two notes on the left foot, especially as the tempos increase.) All the while feathering four on the bass drum.
4. Dividing the hand part of the lick between hi-hat and snare. Playing it as a funk groove/fill ( in 8th notes) and a shuffle ( in triplets).
5. Doing 4 but with hi-hat foot starting the lick again.

These are just a few ideas, but hopefully it will get you thinking about different ways you can utilize anything you learn. When you learn ten different things it can be challenging to link up all that information. If you learn ten different ways to play one thing, you develop theme and variation. This will enable you to have a vocabulary that you can fit into many musical situations.

Until next time.....

Thursday, August 10, 2017

RIP Glen Campbell

Q: What does this have to do with drums?