Monday, January 17, 2022

"Slashing" Flams

 Okay, this is one of those things that I don't have a name for, but I thought the "slashing flam" sounds sort of swashbuckling, so let's go with that for now. It involves hitting two different drum/cymbal surfaces almost simultaneously, with one stroke, creating a flam sound between those surfaces. The history of me using this technique is sort of funny. In the '80s I was checking out an Ed Soph instructional video and was trying to learn this thing he was teaching where you sort of pull your arm out for accents or something. Anyway, i never learned the technique and probably misunderstood it in the first place, but afterward I noticed that I could hit either left side cymbal/small tom or hi-hat/snare almost simultaneously. But I currently started working on this with my right hand to play right side cymbal/floor tom or left side cymbal/small tom. Here is my first attempt, playing it in a 7 thing with a 3 beat cross stick…..

It's hard to see here, but I'm sort of making a circular/scooping motion with my arm so I can reach both surfaces on the way down. It's interesting, it seems to bring the sound of the tom out more when I buzz the stroke, otherwise it's easy to lose the sound of the drum over the volume of the cymbal. I will keep working with it though.

Here's another video where you can see the motion I'm making a little better. Sorry about the low volume of my talking in this one…..

Finally, I mention how this technique can have sort of a loose, almost crude feel that I really like. I'm not sure if this is what he's doing on this tune, but on the Fleetwood Mac tune, "Hold Me" there's a great fill after the break down, (2:45) where he sounds like he went for his tom and accidentally hit his cymbal too! Great, cool fill! Here it is….

Also, although this has nothing to do with what I was discussing, check out how he switches from hi-hat to bell of the cymbal halfway through each chorus. A truly unique player, who also looks great in archeologist's garb! :) 

Have fun! 

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