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Thread: Uh-oh, Timing Problem

  1. #1

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    Unhappy Uh-oh, Timing Problem

    Hey everyone. I have some basic beats and a few little fills, everything based on 4, like doing 4 hits to all three toms or hitting the snare 8 times or hitting the snare four times, then 1 snare 1 tom, 1 snare 2nd tom etc, then go back into my beat. I always thought it sounded good. BUT, I turned on my clicker and you guessed it, not only am I not on 1, I am off with the clicking and my high-hat. I am not taking lessons, I don't really get what a 16th note and all that is, I guess I am trying to figure out how to solve this. Please don't tell me anything too technical, I already don't get it. I love you all, thanks so much for any help you can give me. Oh, and my basic beats are fine, I stay right with it, it is getting back after the fill that I find I am all messed up. Please help! We are having an open jam party Sunday.

  2. #2

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    Ok, basics. If you break up what your playing into a verbal count it should be something like 1+2+3+4+1+2+3+4+ etc... Your hi-hat should play every note (so 1+2+3+....) Your kick should play eveyr ODD note (so the 1 and 3's) and the snare should play every even note (the 2 and 4's). Now, when playing a fill, a rule that often helps beginners is to keep the kick going on every odd and even count (so 1, 2, 3, 4) and letting your hands continue playing all notes (1+2+3+4+..) So keeping it in fours, a really, really basic fill would mean each tom would be hit by 2 strokes , with the first stroke on each tom being in time with the kick.

    So, an example would be, starting on small tom, then moving to middle tom, then floor tom, then snare - 1(kick+right hand)+(left hand)2(kick and right hand)+(left hand)3(kick and right hand)+(lefth hand)4(kick and right hand)+(left hand) - with each Numbe r(1, 2, 3, 4) being the next tom. 1=small tom, 2=then middle tom 3=then floor tom 4=snare - than back to your beat.

    So, to advance on that, speed up your hands, but keep your kick the same. The above count represent 8th notes. The more common setup is 16th notes (i recently got refreshed on what was 8th, 16th and 32nd notes because i forgot). To count for 16th we do the 1e+a 2e+a 3e+a 4e+a. Your beat can still just go 1+2+3+4+ and when you do the fill all your doing is moving your hands with the 1e+a 2e+a count. Your foot still just follows 1 2 3 4. So 1e+a = hands play each count right and left (1=right hand, e=left hand, +=right hand, a=left hand) while the foot only counts the 1, then on the 2 the foot again and your hands are on the next tom, starting with your right hand and so on.

    Your tempo should be slow to begin with until your comfortable though. I'm not sure if I am explaining this in a way you will understand though. Basic principle, keep your foot going at a constant and steady tempo throughout the beat and fill and let your hands follow your foot.

    BTYW - I am assuming your are right handed. If you are left handed, just reverse.
    Last edited by crazymanwithaplunger; 04-23-2007 at 09:20 PM.
    "What consumes your mind, controls your life" - So, what consumes your mind?

  3. #3

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    Thank you so much for taking the time to break this down for me, I really do appreciate it. I will print this out and study it and apply this to my drumming.

  4. #4

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    Ill try to answer your question the best i can. For your timing problems, I had the same problem doing a fill and then realizing "oops I'm off beat, AGAIN!". first of all.. I strongly suggest you use a metronome when you practice, this will sort of build a clock inside your brain and you'll become better and better at keeping time. Whats happening is your doing a beat and then you go to do a fill and you speed the fill up-or slow it down then your off beat once you start your beat again. So just keep trying to do fills (landing them on time) and using your metronome!! you'll get better with practice i PROMISE!!!! I dunno if you do this already but try playing the drums to songs, you don't have to play exactly to what the drummer is playing, just play along with it and make up your own fills and stuff, thats what i did. Also believe it or not, eventually you will be able to tell if your off beat or not without using a metronome, that comes with time. so the cool thing is, you can do a fill and you can tell if it was off beat.

    For your question of 16th timing I had a hard time grasping this, but its really not hard. ill try not to be to technical. To start off, 16th notes are 2x as fast as 8th notes. So take the song Boulevard Of Broken Dreams by greenday for instance. Listen to the beginning drumming of the song. the drummer is playing 8th notes on the high hat. So keeping in mind that 16 notes are 2x as fast as 8th notes, "IF" the drummer was playing 16th notes on the high hat the 'ticking' of the stick on the high hat would be twice as fast. But the tempo of the song wouldn't change. This doesn't just apply to your high hat, it can apply to any part of the drum set , your foot pedal, your high hat pedal , your fills, your beats etc they all can be played in 16th notes!

    hope this helps, sorry its long but its the only way i can explain it

    Heres the link of bulivard of broken dreams>>>>>http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bxfpMGLMZ7Y

  5. #5

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    To start off, 16th notes are 2x as fast as 8th notes
    Yeah, but like is mentioned, the TEMPO (speed of the song) doesn't change, your just playing twice as many notes or stokes in the same time period. That is why I tried to give you the counting with words/vocal sounds. If you count out loud as you play it will help with your timing also, as we have natural rythm and tempo when we speak. It's a wierd thing, but saying it out loud, while you sound like an idiot, helps your timing stay better. Also I do agree, if you have a metronome, use it as much as possible.

    Remember this is just a basic starting point, as there is lots more to it. Getting down the basic 1+2+3+, or 1e+a 2e+a will allow you to then learn doubles and paradiddles more effectively, as well as triplets and pretty much everything else built around the basic 4/4 pattern, just remembering to play each one within that counting structure of 1+2+3+4+.

    So for example, to learn a triplet - remember the count goes 1, 2, 3, 4 and each triplet times within that count. So for example a basic triplet is 1e+2e+3e+4e+ - or you could say aloud trip-a-let, trip-e-let, trip-elet, trip-e-let, playing a stroke for each sylable, with the kick coming on each number (1,2,3,4) and still conforming to the timing and tempo of your original 1+2+3+4+ or 1e+a2e+a etc... make sense? For this reason triplets sound really cool (odd number of strokes to an even count), but seem hard when your first learning, because your just trying to keep time with an even number of strokes, and now here you are trying to fit an odd amount of strokes to an even numbered count, but when you start just counting it and breaking it down, they aren't that hard.

    example of above triplets:
    1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + = basic beat (8th notes)
    1e+2e+3e+4e+ = a triplet fill with each number (1, 2, 3, 4)being the kick aswell and moving onto the next tom
    1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + = back to the beat

    I know you didn't ask about triplets specifically, but I was showing an example of how using the kick and counting method can be applied to most things when your first learning, plus if you didn't before, now you know how to play triplets.
    Last edited by crazymanwithaplunger; 04-24-2007 at 12:26 AM.
    "What consumes your mind, controls your life" - So, what consumes your mind?

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    Thanks again, I printed everything here, will go over it with tine footh comb. I really appreciate your help with this technical boring stuff, I don't want to get off on the wrong foot (feet, and hands!) You guys are my heros.

  7. #7

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    you got it bro! get on the right track

  8. #8

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    Its sis Laferin! Dont be so rude :D

  9. #9

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    Lol!

  10. #10

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    Well, I guess I got homework for a few days!
    Thanks crazyman and lafirin, thanks a lot for the explanations, this is what helps us moving forward.

  11. #11

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    Also, in regards to timing, playing a 16th note fill (1e+a etc )while keeping a 1234 beat on the bass drum or high hat requires a certain amount of coordination for drummers just starting out. Well at least I remember it took me to develop some coordination on the set before being able to do it ( in time) . so get the beat and the fill you want. start off really slow to get the feel and then speed it up.

    And what helps alot is practicing those independance exercises to develop a brain in each limb LOL
    Last edited by livewire80; 04-24-2007 at 04:33 AM.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by livewire80
    Also, in regards to timing, playing a 16th note fill (1e+a etc )while keeping a 1234 beat on the bass drum or high hat requires a certain amount of coordination for drummers just starting out. Well at least I remember it took me to develop some coordination on the set before being able to do it ( in time) . so get the beat and the fill you want. start off really slow to get the feel and then speed it up.

    And what helps alot is practicing those independance exercises to develop a brain in each limb LOL
    Yeah totally agree with you here. Start S L O W L Y. I mean real slow. I'm talking like 50 BPM or something, just until you are comfortable. Do it over and over. It is boring at first, but in no time you will be able to speed up. But that is also why I said ot count out loud, because as you do that it helps you keep track of what you are doing. At least, that's what worked for me at the start. Other people may find different things obviously.

    The biggest thing is to keep at it. I have recently been attempting to finally train myself on double-kick, mainly because I have been slack and only ever really used it for triplets and stuff. ATM though, I am basically just tapping my feet at 16th notes for about 15 minutes at only, I think it was like 80 BPM. Not quick, because I am trying to learn it accurately and effectively, I am keeping it slow and comfortable. Once that get's easy, I will speed it up to say 90 BPM or 100 BPM. It may take a couple of days, it may take weeks, but if I want to be able to play the stuff I wanna play, I have to just keep going, eventualy I wanna be playing 16th's at like 200 220 BPM. If I can do that I will be happy. But not just the speed, but accurately (no double taps, or "flam" style hits) and consistantly in speed and firmness, so i'm not hard at times and soft at others. Anway's, enough about me and what I'm trying to do.

    Let me now if something doesn't make sense, or if you have additional questions.
    "What consumes your mind, controls your life" - So, what consumes your mind?

  13. #13

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    Start at 60 bpm cos thats a beat a second. I good place to start IMO.

  14. #14

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    60 bpm is a nice tempo to start generally, although there are some things I learn such as those independance exercises or learning a new fill and beat that sometimes i take back to 45bpm.

  15. #15

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    I have to say I didn't quite get what you were saying at first crazy but I was able to spend about 10-15 minutes on a drum kit tonight and I applied what you suggested and by george, I did it. I was able to go from my basic 8th note beat into a 16th note fill using my snare and toms and it sounded pretty darn good if I do say so myself. My girls were watching me and they said it sounded very cool! I'm really beginning to see that my practice is paying off.

  16. #16

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    Cool Uh-oh, Timing Problem

    Not quite so uh-oh as in the first post, I see...

    but the metronome and counting will help you get the timing smoother each time.

    Sounds great! (pun intended)
    keep the beat goin' ... Don't keep it to yourself!

    Charlie

    "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away." --Henry David Thoreau, "Walden," 1854

    "There's a lot to be said for Time Honored tradition and value." --In memory of Frank "fiacovaz" Iacovazzi

    "Maybe your drums can be beat, but you can't."--Jack Keck

  17. #17

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    i didnt check your profile i meant dudet

  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by drum_chick
    I have to say I didn't quite get what you were saying at first crazy but I was able to spend about 10-15 minutes on a drum kit tonight and I applied what you suggested and by george, I did it. I was able to go from my basic 8th note beat into a 16th note fill using my snare and toms and it sounded pretty darn good if I do say so myself. My girls were watching me and they said it sounded very cool! I'm really beginning to see that my practice is paying off.
    That's good to hear DC. I know the way I wrote it seems a little confusing, but I'm not sure how else to write it down. Just going LRLRL and things like that wouldn't have been enough I don't think to get the message across. Glad to hear though that I could be of some help.
    "What consumes your mind, controls your life" - So, what consumes your mind?

  19. #19

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    good stuff

  20. #20

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    Ha! I studied what you all gave me, then went through everything with the clicker and got it! I did it at about 50bpm, no probs, so I moved up to 90bpm and I am right on, come back in on one and everything. Thank you guys, you helped me so much!!! You Rock!!

  21. #21

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    You guys are not going to believe this. I was at the music store buying a new peddle for my high-hat and was goofing around on the drums. The drum guy came up and said "Wow, your timing is excellent." Can you believe it? I figure if he was just being polite, he would have said, "you are good on those drums" or something vague. I owe to you all, a thousand thanks! You experienced drummers really make a difference for us.

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Drummina
    You guys are not going to believe this. I was at the music store buying a new peddle for my high-hat and was goofing around on the drums. The drum guy came up and said "Wow, your timing is excellent." Can you believe it? I figure if he was just being polite, he would have said, "you are good on those drums" or something vague. I owe to you all, a thousand thanks! You experienced drummers really make a difference for us.
    That's great drummina, way to go, that should get you motivated to get back on track with practicing.........

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