Ever tried playing the drums?

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gofishduo
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Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by gofishduo » Fri Mar 11, 2011 7:29 pm

Hi all...How many of you as musicians in general, have thought about playing drums? My musical career has up to this point been focussed on guitar/bass, vocals and synth/drm mch., programming....I always thought that playing drums was way too 'physically involving' for me to even consider!...

And then, there was the myth that drummers were stupid! Ha ha!

So to consider taking up drums, you potentially have to take some crap from ppl who think you are taking the easy way out of playing music, and banging something with a stick!

I've been 'lurking' around some famous drum forums, and the standard they hold over eachothers heads(no pun etc..) is nothing short of horrendous! Don't submit any kind of audio demo with any kind of imperfections in your playing...you will be crucified! The adage that 'drummers are idiots' is something that drummers themselves find very hard to live down...the pressure!

Anyway, getting past all that, I have been learning drums for 18 months now on an entry level 6 pc. Pearl kit, with a pearl dbl kick pedal, and an entry level set of Zildian cymbals....

I figured all that practice with instruments in bands would give me a good head-start in the 'timing' department, and I have programmed a drum machine with probably over 200 songs on a note-for-note basis, so I thought I knew the fundamentals of what is required for drumming..

OK....'maybe' some of that experience transferred into starting off at a higher level than most, but I can report that learning drums is like...'learning how to walk again after some kind of spine trauma!'

Admittedly, I want to be able to play double kick like 'Joey Jordison'..(that's Slipknot for those who aren't into metal..)..and for anybody who has heard him play, 'that' is setting the bar about as high as you can go!

I practice along to 'Psychosocial' and 'Dead Memories'...two tracks that are kinda mild in the outright dbl-kick speed this guy is capable of...and there are parts to these songs that I still to this day cannot play!

Why do I keep pursuing this relentless dream that is so near yet so far? Well I tell myself that everyday I hear an improvement...every time I practice, I hear 'something' coming together piece-by-piece.

I've kinda accepted that I'll never be able to do 32'nds at 120bpm...a more realistic figure would be 16ths at 120! yeah! That would be awesome! Sometimes I can touch on that speed and keep it up 'in-time' and with 'good' feel....I just wish i could pull it off on demand and be rock-solid...all the time! Thanks for listening..bobby t
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by Frodis » Fri Mar 11, 2011 10:28 pm

Not all of the 'famous' drum forums are so critical. There are a number of them that try to encourage up and coming players. The trouble with some sites is they are populated with testosterone filled teenagers who are really more interested in comparing penis size using drumming as the analogy. Being able to graciously take criticism as well as constructively give criticism is something that doesn't come easy to some, and never comes to some others.

As a working drummer, I also consider myself a musician foremost and it is the musician in me that informs the drummer. Drummers, while often perceived as the guys who you can see hanging around musicians, oft times take on the role of band leader and this isn't just because they are the guys with two sticks to bang together to count the rest of the band in.

I encourage you to continue drumming and I hope the musician in you can inform the drummer. The drummer you never knew was inside you might just teach the musician a thing or two, as well.

I think I recall an interview with Lamb of God drummer Chris Adler where he talked about the fact that he wasn't supposed to be the drummer at all and that he was a guitar player that stepped in to help out on a temporary basis. Now look how Chris has become one of the most respected heavy metal drummers out there. No one would believe it if he told them he wasn't a drummer.

Regards,
Mike H
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by surfercook » Fri Mar 11, 2011 10:50 pm

Playing drums is good for the mind and soul...just like any musical instrument. And they are definitely not easy. A buddy of mine has a kit set up in his basement and every time I get behind it it just feels sooo cool to keep even a basic beat w/the bass drum, high hat and ride cymbal. He took a few lessons and knows how to really make the kit work.
Stick w/it. You won't be sorry! :drum:
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by lucas » Fri Mar 11, 2011 11:03 pm

if I could afford an electronic kit (since I'm in an apartment) I would get one and learn.
it always looks easy until you try to do it.. and keep it going.
turns out 2-3 minutes is a really long time. :shock:

I never considered any of the drummers I played with or knew to be stupid.
and all of them were definitely considered musicians.

might be better to just get the fundamentals down first before going straight to the double kick speed thrash, etc.
I suspect you didn't 'shred' on guitar before learning the basics there.
build the skill, then the speed.
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by magicaxeman » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:32 am

Donkeys years ago I was your average guitarist, playing with and in local bands and jamming around as you do when a mate who was the drummer in another mates band didn't turn up for rehearsal, his kit was all set up so the guys where each trying them out for a laugh, it came to my turn and I managed to hold a beat, before I knew it the rest of the guys had plugged in and started to jam along.
That was it.. I was the new drummer with zero experience bar mums tuppaware as a kiddy.

I learn't on the fly, just by playing, but the one thing I would say is paramount in learning is playing with other people.
These days a lot of people sit at home, read up, go through tuition DVD's etc but the best way to learn and get better is just to get out and play with others, it doesn't matter if you screw up, you always will and as a guitarist you know that we learn to cover our little fluff's and screw ups, well its the same with drumming, you learn to cover or recover from mistakes, you learn how to keep that internal clock ticking at a regular pace and not let yourself drift with the guitarist or bassist.

So thats my advice, find some local lads, get together and just play.
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by guitar fan » Sat Mar 12, 2011 3:49 am

Hi Bob
I remember you told me you actually play drums a lot.
Send me a track,three minutes of drums, I'll make a sample. :D ;)
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by gwood » Sat Mar 12, 2011 4:33 am

I love playing drums and seem to have some aptitude, whenever we're practicing or jamming, I take a turn at the drums. This is not to say that I'm good, but I can usually hold the beat and do some modest fill, hit the cymbals at the right time. I always thought that I could improve, even get good, but I never had room at home for a set. Oh, well.
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by gofishduo » Sat Mar 12, 2011 7:12 pm

Frodis...Thanks for the support and encouragement Mike! I really appreciate! It's strange sometimes how 'circumstances' can change our lives and direction, like that Lamb Of God guy!

Surfercook...Thanks buddy! You are so right! Fanx for the encouragement!

Lucas...Thanks for the advice, I'll definately take that on board. Hell yeah! Get yourself an E-kit for sure! I guess drumming is like watching ppl play tennis...just try and throw that ball in the air and serve it with full power!

magicaxeman...How yah doin? I'm also an Essex boy from way back! I was born there! Hey your story sounds remarkably similar to Mike's story about Chris Adler...yes your quite correct about finding some local lads to play with..that's some good advice, much appreciate!

Guitarfan...How are you Guy? fanx for your response...so you want a three minute track of drums? OK, any particular preference for tempo or style? Would a 16bit 44.1khz stereo wave file be suitable? or would you prefer an mp3? Could you p.m. me with a private e-mail addy, or do you have something more suitable in mind? Thanks for your request! I am most excited about just exactly what you are going to come up with!

gwood...How are you doing buddy? Thats interesting! You should definately consider grabbing a kit for yourself...it appears all the hard works done mate! I purchased my kit from a private seller off the internet...they even delivered it personally, and spent a cpl of days on holidays nearby at port Lincoln! The kit I purchased was owned by a female, so it was immaculate apart from needing new heads...go for it mate!

Fanx in general for all your encouragement ppl! I'd have to say it definately helps to reach out to like minded ppl and get their take on things...OK, I have been concentrating on dbl kick techniques probably over and above the fundamental moves...but you need to understand that I probably wouldn't have taken up the drums, if all I could achieve was a standard kick-snare thing...that doesn't turn me on much at all. I can play slap bass pretty fast, and do some chunky guitar chuggin'...so I want to be able to play the drums using methods that enhance what I can do with guitars.

It took me a cpl of years to 'get' the slap bass thing, and I can tell you that double kick riffs are way...way more physically demanding! And it's not just a physical dexterity that is required for kick drum, there are other factors to be considered like, seat height and type, beater type and length, batter head type and tension, adjuster spring tension, bass port size and location, internal baffling, front head tension, footwear, pedal grip, not to mention heal up and heal down techniques! All of this stuff has to be adjusted and fine-tuned slowly over time....a beginner like myself has no real idea about just exactly how to set up a kit so it can be played comfortably and naturally...it all has to be sussed out by familiarity and practice. Then there's the fact that I am using a double kick pedal instead of two single pedals and two separate bass drums....the pro's swear by having two kick drums! Doh! Anyway, have a good one! bobby t
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by tonyoci » Sat Mar 12, 2011 10:21 pm

I've said this to a lot of people so I agree.

Drums are ridiculously hard, I think you have to have a natural time clock in your head, you have to able to move all 4 limbs at once doing different things and you have to have great physical fitness. IT's different to a musical musical instrument (:)) but it's just as hard.

When you listen to most drummers they are holding a beat but doing a lot of off beat stuff and I just can't get my brain around that.
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by gwood » Sun Mar 13, 2011 10:46 am

gofishduo wrote:gwood...How are you doing buddy?

Other than a having a cold and messing my back up a few days ago (sneeze...ouch!), OK, I guess. Thanks.
gofishduo wrote:You should definately consider grabbing a kit for yourself...
Impossible. My house is about 950 sq ft, no basement, stuffed attic. When Charlie brings his drums here, they take up half of the biggest room, and it's only a basic kit. I don't even have room for another book around here!
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by Sungodv » Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:46 am

Gotta get my mind off the disaster in Japan.... :cry:

Finding a really good drummer is quite a feat. Being a bassist, my love for a good drummer is hard to explain.
It is a basic instrument so there are those that make attempts because of it's accessibilty, but because of the coordination required, few do it well.
As stated, it's hard to have your extremities do different things all at the same time. Many of us can do rudimentary things on a drum set, but only few can do the real intricate stuff.
The bass drum is really hard for me. I would have to do a separate take for the bass drum alone. To do it all at one time is amazing to me.
Banging on pots and lids with wooden spoons along to 45 RPM records is how I started. How people could play a song on guitar was pretty darn magical to a six year old.

My favorite drummers are:

Jeff Porcaro (taken way too soon)

Frank Beard

...and or course, Ringo
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by voclizr » Sun Mar 13, 2011 2:16 pm

You have to be an absolute MORON to think playing the drums is easy! The sheer physical stamina it takes alone to play with both arms and both legs makes it a task more than I could ever do. You don't see too many good drummers that aren't relatively healthy looking. Practicing on a full kit must be close to the equivalent of working out in a gym! Some pieces I've listened to that are fast and require the kick drum almost constantly moving make me wonder "How do they do that?". There's also the timing issue mentioned above. I could never be a drummer because I'd suck at keeping time. Listening back to my old early acoustic stuff is witness to this. I ALWAYS started out slow and picked up speed as the tune went on. That's a No No for a drummer!!

Nothing done well is ever easy to do. It's just that a talented player sometimes makes it look that way.

My fav drummers would include
Danny Seraphine (Chicago's original)
Carl Palmer
Buddy Rich
Dave Garibaldi
Bobby Colomby
.......and Ringo's not bad either. ;)

:D JB

Oh, BTW-Drums ARE "musical" musical instruments by every sense of the word. Many don't realize that kit drums can be and are frequently tuned to pitch. :)
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by gwood » Sun Mar 13, 2011 9:11 pm

voclizr wrote:Practicing on a full kit must be close to the equivalent of working out in a gym!
Well, I've never worked out in a gym, but drumming's not all that strenuous, really. I'm in fairly poor shape, and Charlie's even worse, and we can both bash those things for a long time. I'm sure being in good shape helps, but I wouldn't say it's necessary. Now that I think of it, playing guitar and singing are more tiring.
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Re: Ever tried playing the drums?

Post by gofishduo » Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:45 pm

tonyoci...I wholeheartedly agree...I haven't yet quite worked out just 'why' I have decided to play drums at this later half of my musical career. Sure, like others have said, I marvel also at the energy and skills required to do this...I guess logically I 'know' I can learn 'some' skills on the drums, at this point I don't know how far I have to go to feel like I've 'mastered' the drumkit...now think about that.."mastering the drumkit!?" What would I have to do, to master the drumkit? Sounds like an awfully big ask to me! And, do I 'have' to master the drumkit? What other options are there? Can I just be OK or something?

gwood...sorry to hear your crook mate(that's ozzy for 'your not feeling well'..) Don't forget to look after yourself mate(that means don't make it worse!..) Ok ok! I hear yah! You haven't got space for a drum kit...at least you let your buddy bring his over occasionally! Thats gotta be worth some credibility...You know you could consider an e-kit....some of those things are skinnier than a Biafran skeleton!(I hope my joking around doesn't incur the wrath of the politically correct brigade..)...no bigger than a small table in the corner! You could have two!

sungodv...yeah it sure is wierd at the moment. We've just come off the back of an earthquake in New Zealand...their could be a faultline running north to south in these parts.
Hey you've got an e-kit haven't you sun? What are your likes and dislikes? I'd have to agree..the kick drum is particularly difficult for me too! Some kick riffs simply defy my ability to even 'move' my legs! I give them the instructions and nothing happens! One thing I have learned is that 'sheer practice' will develop 'some' skills, and I can confidently say that 'anyone' can benefit from that...that's whats got me this far anyhoo!

voclizr...Quite correct JB! I don't know where or how all this anti-drummer s@$t started! I can offer my opinion as a relative new-comer to drumming, and that is..."It will test you mentally, physically and emotionally"...thats just about everything isn't it? Oh, wait a minute! It will test the depth of your pockets too!
Point taken with the tuning of the drums thing...there you go! That's a whole new ball-game right there! Actually, I did have a go at 'tuning' (and I use that term in the loosest of ways possible!..) the drums, but not to some recognized musical note off of a scale, more like having 'musical' sounding intervals between the drums...so when I do a fill, the toms sound like...'someone else' whose good? ha ha!

and finally gwood again...well, I'd have to agree with that statement! I does feel like a full gym workout! And the amazing thing is, I'm the lazyest bast**d you'll ever meet when it comes to getting off my ar** and doing something! OK, so you don't find it pyhsically draining? Then I'd be practicing even more than I do if that was me!

Thanks everybody! It's been great talking to yah! bobby t
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