Discuss drumming technique here
By sebaT
#31025
Hy everybody!

Let`s say that you have 2 hours of practice time every day, and that you don`t know that many rhythms....

how would you divide the practice time, regarding technique ( tones, flams, strenght/stamina, timing/precision....) and the songs/rhythms ??? :flex:

Enjoy! :D
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By fattyboombatty
#31029
I would use drum rudiments, single stroke, double, triple and quad strokes. Paradiddle, Flam taps... etc etc.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paradiddle ... _rudiments

I usually use these as a warm up anyhow, starting slow, building speed until I can barely hold it together, then slowing down again, remembering to breathe, and not tense up.
To translate to a djembe, you can substitute some of the left & right with slaps, tones and bass.
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By e2c
#31033
sebaT, are you new to playing djembe?

If so... work on playing tones, slaps and basses. Just relax and get a feel for your drum, for hand position, for sound, for the feel of the skin itself and of how you can create the various sounds. It takes a while for most folks to develop clear differentiation between tones and slaps, and laying a good foundation for what you want to do is very important.

Then, move on to working with some actual music - a rhythm you're learning. You'll be learning phrasing and timing in the process, and W. African djembe patterns are just *not* like what's played in US popular music. It takes time for the patterns and phrasing to start sinking in and making sense on a gut level, or at least, that's certainly been the case for me.

as for speed/tempo, it takes some time to build up the chops to play fast. If you can play well at a moderate tempo and feel the groove, you'll get to the "speed" part as a natural outgrowth of your practice and playing.

and - as Duga said - listen.

Personally, I wouldn't recommend drum rudiments, but that's up to you. I think slap, tone and bass - and advancing to rolls and proper handing - are the "rudiments" (foundations) of djembe playing. You will also want to learn how to play a basic flam, since that's generally part of the call.

However... if you're doing "world percussion" gigs and need to be versatile, then the rudiments might be helpful.

It all depends on what you want to do, and where you want your playing to go.
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By michi
#31038
fattyboombatty wrote:I would use drum rudiments, single stroke, double, triple and quad strokes. Paradiddle, Flam taps... etc etc.
The next time someone mentions rudiments around here, I'm going to ruthlessly exercise my moderation powers and shut down the entire board for two weeks!

Michi.

PS: That was a joke ;)
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By e2c
#31045
michi wrote:
fattyboombatty wrote:I would use drum rudiments, single stroke, double, triple and quad strokes. Paradiddle, Flam taps... etc etc.
The next time someone mentions rudiments around here, I'm going to ruthlessly exercise my moderation powers and shut down the entire board for two weeks!

Michi.

PS: That was a joke ;)
Uh huh... ;P
By sebaT
#31057
I`m not a newbie anymore, can play slap, tone, bass pretty good and relaxed.... what i mean by that is that i more or less know exactly what i need to do and how it feels to play a good clear bass/tone/slap..... but.... there are closed slap, muff tone, that hollow sounding slap, and i know 2 ways + the malian way (where the hand goes deeper into the drum) for slaps, etc....
that is the one thing i like to spend 30 min every day, because i don`t believe there is an end when developing tones on the djembe.....

rudiments..... imo.... that is something you can develop, without creating bad habits or bad technique, only when you master the basic tones.... plus it gives you more space to be creative with them, and regarding westafrican music only, there is actually no need for them, except flams and single stroke rolls.... other rudiments are usefull when you play djembe kan or more than one drum... like tumbadoras (congas)..... but i think flams (also a rudiment) are very important for djembe, and in regard of western music, there is that book "Stick control for the snare drummer" that can be applied to djembe for deveoping dexterity, strenght in the weak hand, stamina etc....

Listening is something I do the rest of the day, i`m listening to Sega Sidibe as i type :D the question was about time spent on the djembe....

Don`t know where i`m gonna end up, but westafrican music is the road i wanna learn to play djembe through, and dunun offcourse :D i don`t have dununs yet, so i use a old, not so good tom, from a drum set, i lay it on a chair, then play like the real thing, with a nail and everything :D

Thank ya!
Enjoy! :D
By bubudi
#31071
fatty, if you do a search on this site for 'rudiments' you'll see that it has been thoroughly debated. traditional style djembe players pretty much agree that the djembe has its own set of rudiments, and that drumkit rudiments are of limited use to traditional style djembe playing. some of the djembe rudiments have been covered elsewhere on this forum (though mostly without the keyword 'rudiments'!).
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By gr3vans
#31108
sebaT wrote:I read a lot of rudiments but not much answers to my question..... how do we change that?? :D
if you can play for a dance class every day that would be awesome. augment that with heady comprehension time, working with timing, listening and transcribing then realizing that all the work you did was wrong :doh:, etc. strength will come from playing. If you practice two hours a day, you're doing fine. just try not to burn in bad habits and be willing and able to adjust when you find new players and teachers. and find as many of those as you can. you can extend your 'practice' time by doing stupid things like listen to a metronome while you make breakfast, leave it on while you take a shower and come back to see if you're still on time, or just listening to good recordings while you work or drive. put it in your life. You don't need to 'know' a lot of rhythms, just practice what you know over and over and over.

what do you currently do for practice? I'm personally pretty non-regimented and need to fix that.


as for rudiments..... don't worry, I've scripted a political answer.

[monotone response]Snare drum rudiments are fun, complex and interesting. If you practice snare drum rudiments on a snare drum your potential for understanding time, rhythm and snare drum technique will increase. Two of these things apply to djembe music; therefore, there is a significant benefit. [/monotone response] HOWEVER! Of greater value would be to practice djembe music on a djembe. just sayin.

I would encourage you to practice with others as often as you can. this is ensemble music.

this forum has many discussions on technique. read them, experiment and listen. there are many paths to follow. record yourself and listen to your technique. find what works for you now and constantly work on it and let it change. it has been my experience that the sound your hand makes changes over time as your hand actually changes from playing. that is coupled with strength, fineness and general body mechanics, as well as a good understanding of what sounds you're trying to play. find a way to speak the sounds and words you want to pass through your instrument. you don't need 'practice time' to do that, just a lot of alone time or patient people in your life that wont think you're crazy or annoying...
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By michi
#31109
gr3vans wrote:[monotone response]… Two of these things apply to djembe music; therefore, there is a significant benefit. [/monotone response]
Skating on thin ice here… ;)
HOWEVER! Of greater value would be to practice djembe music on a djembe. just sayin.
Yep.

Personally, I don't have a practice regime. What I play is pretty much where my mood and fancy take me. At times, I get interested in a particular technique and I practice that. Other times, I just jam and see where it takes me. Still other times, I pick a piece of music I like, such as a long break, and learn that. Still other times, I work on technique and my sounds.

There really is no concept of "It's now Tuesday, and I'm going to practice X" or of "it's 10:25 am, time to change to double-speed triplets."

A mechanical or regimented approach to practice has never worked for me. Rather, I just wander around until I stumble across something interesting. For example, when I play and try a particular technique and mess it up, I might stop doing whatever I was doing and focus for a while on the bit I just messed up. Other times, I ignore the messed-up bit and just keep going because I'm having too much fun doing what I'm doing right now.

How one practices is very much a matter of personality, I think. For some people, a set schedule works best, for people, something much less structured works better. It really is up to you. The most important thing is the playing time, IMO. There is no such thing as a wasted hour on the djembe. Just play, play, play, and you'll get better as a side-effect.

Michi.
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By TwoKnivesTan
#31174
I generally follow this pattern:

Two days a week I practice the basics: tone/slap/bass, flams, and roulements. I then shift the notes and mix up some patterns, playing along with a metronome in both 4/4 and 12/8 time. I start the practice slowly, and build up speed as the session progresses.

Two days a week I practice on the dunun, playing the dununba, sangban and kenkeni parts in accompaniment to songs I've programmed into Acoustica Beatcraft. I found the dunun practice to be essential to "feeling" the West African rhythms.

Two days a week I practice traditional West African songs on the djembe, with accompaniment from Acoustica Beatcraft.

Each of the sessions lasts between one and two hours.

The other week day, I have a four hour practice with my West African ensemble group.

...and then I fit in two to three hours of didgeridoo throughout the week. I gotta get a life!
By bubudi
#31224
some words on frequency of practice: does more practice time mean faster improvement? not necessarily. if you're talking about 30 mins v 10 mins then ok, regular intervals of 30 mins will likely give you faster results than intervals of 10 mins. however, there comes a point when "less is more". i don't recommend playing every single day - at least 1 day off per week (2 is optimal for me). allow some breathing time for the music to just sink in. an occassional 2 hour session is good but for regular sessions, i recommend 45-90 mins for disciplined players who have already reached an advanced student level in their playing. i've been involved in groups that did 3-4 hours per session and progress was slow until i made the suggestion to reduce sessions to 2 hours or less and just really focus for that time. i would leave after 90 mins feeling that we actually made very good progress. however, i'd recommend shorter sessions for beginners or intermediates - there's a saturation point in concentration, discipline, technique, endurance, energy, playing fitness, etc and it takes a while to gradually increase it. also, if you're stretched for time, two 20 min sessions per week will be better than only one 40 min session. however, if your only "practice" is class, you're simply not trying at all.