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Old 02-24-2010, 05:31 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Drummers!

I got a kit last Dec. don't get the opportunity to play it much. But basically, how long did it take you to learn everything to the point where you were "good", enough to be in a band I guess.

How much harder is it to teach yourself than to get lessons?
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Old 02-24-2010, 05:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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teaching yourself how to play the drums is not impossible, but instruction of some kind or another is inarguably beneficial. having the internet is a powerful tool for any musician wanting to pick up pointers or, in some cases, all-out lesson plans from an online instructor. but a real person in the same room as you who is experienced and can have a continuous dialogue with you in real time is extraordinarily beneficial because they can tell you what you as an individual should be doing with your physical self in order to develop a sufficient musical vocabulary to express your ideas.

i say about music that one should suck up as much information as is made available.
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Old 02-24-2010, 05:51 PM   #3 (permalink)
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True, I was gonna start going to that freedrumlessons.com or whatever it is. But then again it's so bland and hard to get into.
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Old 02-24-2010, 06:56 PM   #4 (permalink)
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i've found youtube to be a pretty valuable resource. you can find 2-10 minute vids with simple ideas in them for you to work on that will help your playing. if you are going to go the route with no formal instruction i would suggest getting some good books with different approaches in them. a list of rudiments and a practice pad will also help you grow faster if you spend a sufficient amount of time with them. any good drummer practices rudiments on a regular basis. many drummers today agree that Jojo Mayer's instructional video is a must-have for anyone taking a musical approach to the drumset. you might be able to find in a torrent somewhere if you can't afford to pay 60 bucks for it. nonetheless, it's worth 60 bucks.

but really, just practicepracticepractice.
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Old 02-24-2010, 07:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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In regard to the rudiments, yea, I already know of a site that offers all 40.
And, this is a kinda sillly question, but how important is it to know how to read music?
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Old 02-24-2010, 07:08 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by daltonstrife View Post
And, this is a kinda sillly question, but how important is it to know how to read music?
considering the average guitar player can't. it's not that big of a deal unless you're looking to be a pro studio session musician, part of an orchestra, or one of those hired gun cheese balls backing a pop star.
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Old 02-24-2010, 07:44 PM   #7 (permalink)
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So, would you say most bands don't know how to?
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Old 02-25-2010, 06:41 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by daltonstrife View Post
I got a kit last Dec. don't get the opportunity to play it much. But basically, how long did it take you to learn everything to the point where you were "good", enough to be in a band I guess.

How much harder is it to teach yourself than to get lessons?
I started beating on desks, counter-tops, and any available surface since I was about 8 years old I think. After that I started making my own drum sets out of my mom's plastic-ware and cookie tins and pan tops and generally developed a sense of coordination and rhythm by practicing along to any recorded music I could find or just by playing along to music on the radio. Eventually I got a real drum set and it all snowballed up-hill from there. Today I would consider myself a very competent drummer, but there is ALWAYS room to improve on musical ability.

Obviously, the key element of becoming a decent drummer is practice. Yea, it may take less time for a person to get "technically" good if they have someone telling them exactly what to do and how to do it, but the real elements involved in what it takes to become a competent drummer are coordination, timing, and a very keen ability to understand musical structure at an instinctual level. This can be taught to a very minimal extent, but the majority of it has to be learned and practiced through action.

The important thing you need to understand is that simply going to an instructor is not going to make you a good drummer in X amount of time. You literally have to create the connections in your brain through practice and understanding. To some this comes naturally, and to others it's more of a challenge. But in either situation, the common denominator is the drummer's willingness and passion to play and practice as much as possible. If you're a weekend warrior, don't expect a significant amount of growth in a short period of time, even with an instructor.
Drum practice should be a daily thing. You have to create an ability in your brain that's a lot more complex than learning how to play tic-tac-toe or getting good at headshots in Modern Warfare 2.
The time-frame at which you'll become good enough to drum for a GOOD band is directly proportionate to the amount of time and effort you put into your trade.
I'm not going to lie... It doesn't happen overnight. It takes years before you're ever even comfortable with your own playing along side an established drummer. Most of us aren't gifted virtuoso's of drumming from birth. All I can say is that you need to invest the time and the effort, and yes, it would be beneficial to get all the instruction you can...
But don't expect that just because you pay for an instructor that you'll pop out the other end a good drummer.

Use the internet. Tutorial videos. Friends that drum a little better than you. Learn their secrets, techniques and methods. Read articles. And most of all, APPLY what you learn VIGOROUSLY. All the time. Drumming should be your life.

The most important thing I can say, though, is don't look for an easy way to become a good drummer. It's not going to happen and you'll waste your time doing so. If being a good drummer is what you want, you better be damned prepared to work for it. Instruction or not.
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Old 02-25-2010, 08:33 PM   #9 (permalink)
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i agree with everything freebase dali just said.

as far as reading music, sheet music for kit drumming is pretty basic and shouldn't take anyone that long to pick up on. it will feel weird and you might play the lines in a stuttered or choppy manner when you start, but with practice you'll eventually be able to read and play as though you were reading words and speaking them aloud. it's something which could be viewed as not completely necessary as not a lot of bands use scored music, but to be proficient at it is to be that much more in tune with how your instrument functions out of and within an ensemble of any kind.

it can also be a valuable creative tool in the sense that if you have something that is technically beyond your current reach and the complexity of it has something to do with your inability to overcome it, then the ability to visualize it in a linear manner or even write it down will give you mental reference points and even further your facility to slow it down.
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Old 03-03-2010, 01:34 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The most important thing I would stress to get right if you're teaching yourself is TECHNIQUE!

When I first started drums I had lessons, but after my first year I had to take a break due to lack of funds... Long story short, my technique absolutely fell to pieces without me even realising. I went back for lessons the next year and my new teacher had to help me repair all the damage (took months).

If you think you can handle getting your technique down on your own then go for it, but I would seriously suggest getting at least ONE lesson on technique and going from there. Bad technique can be a huge roadblock later on down the track... It might limit your speed, stamina, and overall sound... You may even end up severely injuring your wrists (have heard of people not being able to play for months because of injuries).

But besides that, if you're teaching yourself then try and feature at least some rudiments in each of your practices. Master the basics before moving on to more complex things. It's frustrating to go back and learn basic rhythms you never looked at (and can't play well) when you're rolling sixteenth triplets at 150bpm no sweat.

Anyway, good luck with whatever you do!
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