From the May issue of Drum | BY JARED FALK | DAY 8 of 10
Today’s Focus: Hands & Feet
Duration: 30 Minutes Practice each exercise individually for five minutes, and then play them in sequence for 15 minutes.
Sequels are never as good as the original, right? Well, we’re going break that rule by testing your abilities to play groupings of three, five, and seven between the hands and feet.
For Ex. 1, we play groups of three using sixteenth-note triplets. The right and left hands alternate as you place the kicks in between. As an added challenge, you can also play quarter-notes at the same time with your hi-hat foot. Once you’ve nailed the basic pattern, feel free to start moving it around the drums — this works especially well in solos.
Ex. 2 is also played as sixteenth-note triplets, but now we use groups of five. I’ve become obsessed with using RLRLL as a hand pattern (thanks to Benny Greb), so in this case I split it up between the hands and feet. What would normally be played with the left hand is now played on the bass drum, as we split the two main hand strokes between the right and left hands. Take your time with this one and make sure to practice using a metronome so you know you’re playing it in time using the correct note values.
The final challenge in Ex. 3 is the same concept as the previous exercise, but this time we play sevens. Similar to playing fives as RLRLL, we play sevens as RLRLRLL, while placing the main foot where our left hand had been, and alternating the hits with the hands. You’ll notice that the hand lead patterns actually change each time the sequence repeats. The first exercise is written in 4/4, the next one is 5/4, and the last one is 7/4. I’ve done this so they all naturally repeat and it creates a nice sequence of exercises for practicing.
Start practicing all of these at 50–60 bpm and speed them up in 5 bpm increments as you get comfortable with the patterns.
Practice The Sequence First
Practice the sequence of the patterns first, and then assign a note value.
Want An Added Challenge?
Try to play patterns using the hi-hat foot or alternate bass drum pedal.