By Tiger Bill Meligari
This lesson continues from where our previous lesson ended. If you haven’t yet worked on Accented Triplets: Buddy Style Part 1, please follow that link and practice that lesson before moving on to this one. Here, we take our accented triplet patterns to the next level by applying additional sticking variations.
Watch the video demonstration as I play each of the five accented triplet patterns using three sticking patterns: single strokes (as used in Part 1), double strokes, and single paradiddles. The goal is to make the accents sound exactly the same regardless of the sticking pattern. You must also be careful not to lose the two distinct dynamic levels between the accented notes (loud) and the unaccented notes (soft).
Once you can successfully apply these sticking patterns at slow tempos, gradually increase the speed until you start to feel tension creeping in. If that happens, stop and shake out your wrists and arms before trying the exercise again. With regular practice, you should be able to increase both speed and endurance before tension creeps in.
Here are the steps to take to perfect this lesson:
1) On a practice pad, repeat each of the five 4-bar phrases separately. Apply one of the three sticking variations each time through, as shown in the video. You’ll notice that these exercises all start with a right-hand lead but you should practice them with a left-hand lead as well. This will help you develop speed and endurance in both hands at an equal pace.
2) On a practice pad, play the five 4-bar patterns straight through before repeating them. Apply one of the three sticking patterns each time through. Write down a metronome time in your workout notebook at a tempo where the exercises are comfortable for you to play. Increase that tempo a click or two at each practice session until you’ve reached your first goal, which I suggest is 208 bpm. Once you feel comfortable playing these drills at that tempo, you are ready to take them to the drum set.
3) Play each accented note on a tom (any of your toms) and each unaccented note on your snare drum. There is only one “must” and that is not to play any crossovers. Avoid creating any tom patterns that force you to cross one hand over the other. The key here is to be creative when applying these exercises to the drum set. That is why I have chosen not to write the tom patterns for you. Use my accented patterns as the base but be creative when you spread them around the drum set while, at the same time, being careful to apply the correct sticking pattern to each drill. Note: These exercises are written in 4/4 time so I suggest adding your bass drum on all four quarter-notes and your hi-hat on 2 and 4.
4) Now it’s time to add some crossovers to your patterns. Crossovers were a huge part of Buddy’s bag of tricks and you will go a long way if you learn to add them to your own bag. Crossovers not only look showy to your audience but they also can produce some incredible sounds that are impossible to duplicate without them. Note: Add a foot pattern to these drills such as the one suggested in step 3.
If you have any questions on this lesson, please leave a comment for me below.
Until next time: Have fun and stay loose!
Tiger Bill Meligari