New Mod Orange

personal drumming habits, etc.

Monday, May 20, 2013

take 2

I am drumming again, have been since last November. This is the final push towards attempted pro musicianship. I saved up money working 6 Days a week for the state, went hard to the verge of having a mental breakdown at that job, and had to quit for that reason. my body also completely atrophied during that time. now im 27, doing bike delivery for sandwiches 20 hrs a week (getting in shape, oh yeah), trying to burn cash as slowly as possible and get good at drums and guitar at the same time. Not good, but jawdroppingly incredible. At least thats the goal i am remaining in pursuit of, cause you're either in, or youre out. Cash in those chips in. The goal is for an October tour, so 4 more months doing Austin party time and on the bike by day. Mind body spirit total emersion, I am trying to become strong. i didnt have a kit set up until january...i was living in a coop and was doing basic drumpad stuff at first. its finally starting to get fun, its been a slog but i am starting to get good. i got new heads for my toms, a 13 inch free standing rack and a 15 inch floor tom, and they are able to hold much lower pitch, which was necessary. i have a double kick pedal, 15 inch high hats and currently no cymbals. that is by design, because i didnt want to get too involved with cymbals when i was first getting started, less i develop any bad habits. its not too late for that, but think if i am careful i have the chops to keep it under control. ;so its been around 6 months. as an aspiring professional musician in the competative marketplace it is necessary that i produce a steady stream of content of some kind. well, if im gonna do that on my terms, i think a resuccitated drum blog is in the works. this subject is close to my heart, and i hope someone finds it interesting. I'll try and throw some juicy tidbits about my personal life in there. Me and my roommate were just talking about how your sexuality is one of the things closest to your soul. That thought just came up again because guess drumming is another one of those. Anyways bon voyage etc, this will be comprehensively linked thru tumblr etc relatively soon. Peace -e

Monday, March 10, 2008

Blog Recucetation

There is no fucking way thats how you spell that word. Anyways I thought I'd bring this here motherfuck back from the grave. Right now Im doing a 4 hr radio slot, from 1-5 in the morning. Its fun. Im a late night DJ kind of guy. A real "fuck you listeners, I'm doing this for me, so step the fuck off" kind of guy. You know, a personality DJ. A real asshole. Papa knows best.

So this is going to be a place for what now? I barely drum. My sticks are all fucked. I'm so over spending money on music gear, including sticks and strings. I'm all about spending money on making vinyl records, and sticking gas in a tank for tour (what do you think gas will cost this summer?) I'm about spending money on nothing, and working as little as possible. I'm all about wishing I hadn't signed a lease on RanchO for one more year (although sort of I'm cool with it) and just crashing like a fucking bum somewhere and not having rent to pay and sticking my shit in a storage unit. I've got so much shit, which is to say gear and furniture, and 1/3rd of a giant ancient TV. You know there is so much Vampire Weekend shit talk going around, and those guys are so obviously oblivious that I almost find the need to put my college degree and affluent, basically normal Jewish background into hiding for professional reasons. But fuck that, really, of course I wont really do that. A person is a person and if you treat people that way (aka respectfully) and do your best not to wear fucking polo shirts for your rock and roll cover shoot for Spin Magazine, hopefully you come out OK. I mean, Gibby Haynes went to college, how hard can it be to disown the whole thing, for real?

Side note: Bradford Cox is an art rocker because he wears a dress on stage? Jesus I haven't seen a band do that since....oh wait...Phish. Hmm...
I think I'm getting over the whole Deerhunter thing, which is weird because when Cryptograms came out I thought it was really, really like, the shit for real. Its not aging well, in fact, I dont even want to fucking listen to it. It gives me a gag reflex, which is bizarre. I have gotten that about records before and then come back to them. The one I can straight up think about is The new Pornographers first 2 records, which I listened the shit out of. Im even (totally shockingly) warmming to their 4th one, Challengers, which is really strange. I had listened to it in the store and was like "this sucks" but Daniel (my brother) wanted it and gave me the CD after he got the MP3s of it (kids these days). Its like A.C. Newman lite in a way, but also like Canadians in their 30s making records. I hope I never make records that sound like that, but for falling asleep, the whole losing interest thing works well. That's fucked up to write, but hey I call em like i see em (sorta).

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Beat #2: 12/8 rock groove

The beats are the meat of a drum blog right? Thats why Im relieved to having a second one up here. It helps even out the ranting/personal details. This one kinda got cut off at the end, but ignore the accent on the very last snare hit, that was a dumb idea. This beat came to me out of a practice beat for the half time shuffle. The practice beat was just the first triplet repeated over and over. I can barely play this at Q=60 with the hi hat as written right now, but there is only 3 parts to the beat with no technical effects so its pretty easy to practice and get better at, just practice in this order and you should be golden.

1. hands only
2. hi hat and kick only
3. snare and kick with hi hats on all three beats of the triplet
4. the beat as written really slow

Saturday, September 29, 2007

"Simple" Drumming

Shitty drummers always use fills. They usually posses certain characteristics that make the fills unbearable, but lets stick that aside.

I have a goal. I've been working this into my practice schedule where I get a CD on headphones and just play along to it straight through. I pick an easy one, the first selection was The Strokes-Is This It. Future picks are going to be Wire-Pink Flag (which I unsuccessfully attempted to do 2 years ago,) Sam Cooke-Live at the Harlem Club, and Jon Richman and the Modern Lovers. I played through Marvin Gaye's greatest Motown hits and that was excellent, though I feel like I was leaving a lot out. Still, by not playing all the notes and fills that are visible in their absence, you get a feel for how the songs work.

Its interesting, simple records might have one drum break in the whole thing, or one complicated ride pattern, but its enough to make you realize that these drummers could be playing a lot more, and are consciously choosing not to . And it makes the song work which is the ultimate goal. Many of the returns to the chorus on Is This It are made stronger by the lack of a drum fill. If the first half of the measure is the same in chorus and verse, you arent going to even notice the shift until the song demands it (it will be seemless).

I was thinking to myself "this is R&B drumming! whoa!" Actually, its soul drumming, more Sam Cooke than Marvin Gaye, but the point remains that you simplify your life and make your playing better by playing with the music enough to really start to smell what they are stepping in.

Your Left Hand Must Always Know What Your Right Hand Is Doing

That sort of came to me. Maybe its obvious, but I'm starting to feel like the most essential relation is between the hands, and not necessarily the kick and the snare. Anyways even if its too vague to mean anything, it sounds like something out of Oblique Strategies, right?

Now quick, whatever this post says to do, do the opposite (*wink*)

Friday, September 28, 2007

Breaking The Endurance Exercise Down...WAY Down

Ok, so I got a little high to practice drums today. Just a teensy bit high. Well, more like alot. The thing I really did was dig into the endurance exercise (outside of playing along with Marvin Gaye's greatest Motown singles which is a whole nother thing in itself). Mostly the single stroke one, but later I found it helped me with my double stroke one as well.

Its probably worth explaining in depth at this point, but the endurance exercise I'm doing is like this:
there are 16 counts total (i count it as 8 and 8 in my head, but really its written as 4 beats divided into 16th notes) and it goes into double time for first only the last count, then the last 2, then the last 3, until it goes all the way up to being in double time the whole time. Each pattern is held 4 times, so first you play 15 16th notes followed by 2 32nd notes 4 times, then 14 16th notes followed by 4 32nd notes and on and on.

OK. One of the first things I did was with how I was counting it. It used to be if for example i was counting the one where the 32nds come in on beat 12, I would count 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 1, 2, 3, and then quit counting while the 32nds went on. So the first thing I changed was I started to count 1-8 1-8 every time out loud, no matter where the switch was.

Another thing I did was change it to an exercise that was 8 counts total. Then on the even numbered ones I would accent all the single strokes and not the doubles (still counting through). For the odd ones, I would accent the single strokes only on the hand where the additional single stroke lied. This was the most effective of all the drills for correcting my weak spots.

For these I divided the exercise up into only evens and only odds. So I would do 8 counts solid single strokes (16th notes) 4 times, then 6 counts single stroke and 2 counts with the 32nd notes, then 4 and 4, 2 and 6 and finally all 8 counts with the 32nds and then back down.

I counted this 3 ways: 1-8 every time, then only counting the single strokes and then only counting the double strokes, which seemed to help my ear (ex. single stroke, single stroke, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8)

Anyways if you are having trouble upping the tempo on the endurance exercise this is probably a great way to go into it, because you address every single beat, so you can really isolate the exact spot where you begin to have trouble.

Also its worth doing extra single strokes with your weak hand before getting into this.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Sexual Frustration

...will make you practice drums longer than anything else. Not because its going to help you get laid, just because you gotta get all that tension out! The way things are going I hope I don't meet a woman for at least 2 weeks, cause then I'll really have made some progress, but uuh, ... not too much longer than that, please!

Today saw a new one session record: 2 hours 39 minutes, not counting breaks....practice lasted from 8 - 11:30 PM.