Charlie's Practice Blog

Day 1, 1 hour.

Listened to Jazz song.

Did a simple search on YouTube to find Jazz songs and found playlist with loads of different jazz songs, with different tempos and instrumentation.

Picked out key features of this style in drum section.

The drum part in jazz is mainly swing rhythms and that the tempo changes a lot. Sometimes the drum kit is played with brushes which gives more variety of sounds on the snare plus it gives it more of a relaxed feel. It is very clear that there is solo sections which all instruments involved have one.

Listening closely to the drum section and thinking about how I could learn this and put it into my playing.

I thought about how learning working in different tempos will be helpful and learning to play with brushes because these are two key features in jazz so it will be good if I could get this right.

Day 2: 30 minutes

Working specifically on playing brushes.

In these 30 minutes I want to know the basic techniques on using brushes. How to hold them and why and also what different sounds can be played which I haven't played before.

Watched lessons online on how to improvise in different time signatures.

Went onto YouTube and simply typed in " Drum lesson jazz with brushes" and I found a lot of videos on the different techniques used. I found one which just took me over the basics and two of the most simple brush patterns and kept playing these over and over again until I got them.

What I did next was I listened to Scott Hamilton's song "I'm Glad there is you" and listened to the work done on the snare and tried to replicate that which went well.

What went well what didn't go well.

I stuck to my task that I had to do but however learning the new patterns and new techniques I got frustrated with myself so wasted time stressing out over something I shouldn't really be. So next time I'm just going to take my time, breathe and not get too frustrated as much.

Day 3: 30 minutes

Work on solo section.

When I first went about this I just simply started to listen to listen to drumless backing tracks and tried to play along and see what happened. This though was not the correct way to go about it. So after this mistake I did a simple search of "Jazz Drum Solo Lesson" and I found some really good lesson about rolling in solos and taking it slow compared to other solos in different genres I'm used to. I also found that to make the rolls work in a tempo I have to speed up my speed in my arms and wrist to get the timing perfect. So whenever I have free time I will sit down with my drum stick and tap on whatever I have to speed up my hands.

Used different backing tracks at different tempos.

After getting more of an idea of what I need to do in solo sections I went back and listened to drumless jazz backing tracks and applied what I had learnt before hand and played along with the track. I played along with different tempo tracks so I could see what works well and what doesn't work well in certain tempos.

Day 4: 30 minutes

Started to work on different genre, RnB.

RnB has a lot of different genres under its umbrella. So I did a search on YouTube to find playlist of loads of different songs, with different tempos and different instruments used.

Pick out key features of this style.

Two key features that I picked out which will benefit me in my learning are that, the drum rhythms stay the same all the way through the songs but what is different is that they are played on drum machines so I need to figure out a way to try and make an acoustic kit sound like that. The other key feature is that RnB song are very boomy and bassy so when playing I would need to make my playing very bassy and boomy. Part of my practice time will be how to make the kick as boomy as I can.

Listen to the drum parts in detail and think about the way the drums are played and how I could apply that to my playing.

I thought about is how the different subsection of RnB and how the rhythms from jazz and blues will work in the different song. Also look at how the sticks are held and how the attack is created.

Day 5: 1 hour

Looked closely at the drum parts and the techniques used.

What I want to achieve today is to get more of a ruff idea about the beats and the techniques used to create these beats and fills.

Watched video lesson on different fills and beats I could play to show of my skills.

The way I went about learning different beats is typing into YouTube "RnB drum lessons" and I found a lot about the grooves but watching them most of them were the same. I did however find one about 16th notes in a RnB groove which I found very helpful.

After practicing this groove for about 15 minutes I moved on to finding songs that I can play for next session. I wanted to find songs with different tempos so I could practice different rudiments at different speeds.

What went well what didn't go so well.

What went well was that I got everything done what I wanted to get done. However what didn't go so well was that when I was looking for the songs for my next session I kept getting distracted by other YouTube videos which has nothing to do with my task. What also happened was I found songs but they weren't RnB songs so I had a hard job trying to find them. To prevent getting distracted from other videos I will set a time limit where I look for so many songs in that time then go and watch random videos for a time then go back until a have a good list of different songs with different tempos.

Day 6: 30 minutes

Play along with the songs picked last time.

What I did was went through the song I found the other session and played along with them. I worked out what fills went well and which ones didn't. However some songs were very similar so there wasn't much I could do to expand my ideas. But I did look up some different complex fills that I could try and learn. Yes these were hard but I wanted to push myself to do something that is challenging. I didn't manage to play the complex fill correctly but I play a simpler version the fill.

Overall I have learnt different drumming techniques which will help me improve my drumming and the way I play certain genres of music. It has helped me choose how to play certain songs in the future.


Created with images by Ska-te - "percussion drums drum kit"

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