Melodic Motion Studies for Drumset

  • Posted on: 14 June 2014
  • By: sheldonkreger

In the past, I've struggled with coming up with drum fill ideas off the top of my head. Oftentimes, it's hard to just work with three toms to create something that sounds interesting and not too 'drum-tastic'. In many cases, simply applying rudiments and moving your hands around the drum set sounds flat-out terrible. In addition, you can end up with awkward motions which result in slamming your sticks together or hitting rims at EXACTLY the wrong moment.

So, where do you come up with ideas?

This is where Jeff Salisbury's new book from Hal Leonard comes in. This 69 page book is dedicated to solving exactly the problem above. Divided into six parts, you'll have a chance to try many motions around the drum set.

1. Sticking Around the Clock (moving the hands clockwise or counterclockwise).

2. Vertical, Horizontal, and Diagonal Inversions of Paradiddle-Diddles (easier than it sounds)

3. Outsourcing the Paradiddle

4. Blowing in the Windmills (A concept unique to this book!)

5. Tilting at Windmills or Playing the Numbers

Each section contains many exercises which will develop your coordination *in motion* around the drum set. I've never seen a book like this before.

Noteworthy is the fact that all you need is three toms and your snare drum (plus hats and ride) to work this entire book.

Although I found that learning the stickings was easy and familiar, in many cases, I found that the exercises were difficult to execute. Although it's good to have challenge, I really dislike crossing my drumsticks . . . EVER . . . so I chose not to practice exercises which involved crossing the hands over one another. Although there is certainly benefit in practicing things that are hard, I've found that even if I work on things that are REALLY HARD (like crossing the sticks in a fast fill), I can never really integrate it into my playing. Perhaps I'm just lazy!

Regardless, I love this book because it is opening up new doors for fill phrases which I would have never thought of on my own. It's also enabling me to be creative and try the stickings in ways which are comfortable for me.

You can purchase this book from Hal Leonard directly.

Jeff Salisbury
Hal Leonard

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