BY “TIGER” BILL MELIGARI
If you worked on my previous lesson, both on the pad and the drum kit, then you’ll probably be ready for this. If you haven’t seen that lesson yet, I suggest you work on Chops Builder – Part1 before you start woodshedding this. This workout will take your technique to the next level by adding accents.
Refer to the music notation and then watch the video for a demonstration. Even though you may have gotten the unaccented Chops Builder in Part 1 up to speed, you’ll probably need to slow down a bit until your muscle memory gets the chance to become familiar with the accents in this version. As always, the key is to start at a comfortable tempo and gradually increase your speed. Stop immediately upon feeling tension, shake your muscles loose and try the exercise again. If you continue to get tense, slow the metronome down until you find a tempo where you can comfortably complete the exercise. Daily practice is what will allow you to steadily increase your speed and endurance.
For best results, practice this accented Chops Builder as follows:
- Disregard the single quarter note in the 9th bar and repeat each of the remaining 8 bars separately, a minimum of four times each, before moving on to the next.
- Disregard the single quarter note in the 9th bar and create 2-bar phrases from the remaining 8 bars. Repeat each 2-bar phrase a minimum of four times before moving on to the next.
- Play the entire 9-bar exercise straight through as written.
- When practicing on the drums, add your feet: Bass drum on the beats of 1, 2 3, 4 and hi-hat on 2 and 4.
- For extra study, practice all of the above variations with a left hand lead.
When moving around the drum set as you play this exercise, remain aware of tension building up anywhere in your body. There is no reason why you can’t play as loose and relaxed on a full kit as you do on a single practice pad. It simply takes practice.
Until next time: Have fun and stay loose!