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Thread: Beginners Songs/Exercises

  1. #1

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    Default Beginners Songs/Exercises

    I'm a complete beginner for drums, I don't know what to learn first or play first. I can play the basic beat that's on all of the beginner youtube videos with kick pedal on 1 and 3 and stuff. I've played rock band so I'm not completely clueless about my coordination and rhythm, I just don't know where to start. Can anyone help me? (I have an electronic kit if it means anything)

  2. #2

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    Well, definitely practice the rudiments of course.
    Some good online lessons. Lots really.

    But, if you are like me, you are going to wantbto mix in practicing rudiments with playing SOMETHING that sounds like a song. No matter how bad it is at first.

    The first song I learned to play, all the way through, was My Kinda Lover, Billy Squier. Basic beat and simple rolls.

    Keep at it. One day you'll say wow, I'm not too bad.
    Drummer Chick

  3. #3

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    I just learned That's What You Get by Paramore...is that a simpler song? The problem is that I have to use earphones from my mp3 and so the cord prevents me from moving to the toms. *siiiigh* I watched a cover of That's What You Get and there weren't really toms, and I liked the song =]. I'll check out that song you posted chewgravel, thanks.

  4. #4

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    i could list a bunch of easy songs you can play along with and say practise your rudiments

    get drum lessons for at least 6 months, unlearn all the bad habits from youtube and rockband then join a real band

    when your rich and famous remember me

  5. #5

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    Itchies 100% right. Do yourself a big favor and get some instruction. If for any reason, technique. Yeh you can pick up a lot from YouTube, good and bad. Your learning curve time will be cut down somewhat which is a plus if your older.

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  6. #6

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    Itchie's right, lessons with a good drum teacher, who knows how to address fundamentals, but can make it a bit fun, will help to correct any bad habits picked up by "self-teaching". See if you can find someone willing to teach you for more than the "half-hour stock-standard" time, for a reasonable price, of course. In my experience, I feel a lot of people, even if they're at a certain level, can't have everything compressed into a half hour lesson, beginners especially.

    Incidentally, I teach all students how to read, rudiments/fundamentals of theory, good posture and finding the right grip, as well as the fun stuff - learning songs! For the absolute beginner who wants some easy songs, I charted the following:

    1)We Will Rock You (Queen): Possibly the no-brainer, one bar of written rhythm, and 2 mins worth of repeats for verse and chorus sections. No fills!
    2)Not Of This Earth (Joe Satriani): Another 'easy to read', one bar of notation at the beginning (the classic "boom bap, boom-boom bap" beat) and 4 mins worth of repeat bars, again, no fills. However, this chart introduces repeat endings and other necessary chart short-cuts.
    3)Every Breath You Take (The Police): Introduces a new rhythm (slight change in kick drum pattern in comparison to the Satriani tune). Also introduces how to read a simple three note fill at the end of certain sections.
    4)When The World Is Running Down...(also The Police): No crashes, no fills, simple boom bap boom bap beat BUT it's the faster song of the bunch, so that tries out another skill to master....keeping a tempo without slowing down. Again, all charted, more repeat signs for the student.
    5)Walking On The Sun (Smash Mouth): a recognisable 90's song, I tell the student that if they can do the bridge part of "Every Breath You Take" with it's notated kick and hi-hat pattern for the feet, (right hand's on the ride)..then add one more kick note, then they have the basic pattern for this song. Also, one fill introduces a drag, another fill introduces a paradiddle between right foot and left hand.
    6)A Hard Day's Night (The Beatles): Without the Beatles, you wouldn't have a good body of work that represents 60-70's rock. The chart for this has a certain basic beat, however the speed can be a little tricky for a beginner at first...warming up helps. It had one snare/kick/hi-hat build up that can be a trainwreck if you tense up playing it.
    7)Boulevard Of Broken Dreams (Green Day): A slower song than the others mentioned, but introduced into the lessons for that very reason...mastering tempo! The student will see two basic rhythms (with repeats), one for the verses, another for choruses (basically); however, there are also two bar variations, drags pop up as part of a simple fill, cymbal accents appear on the chart, and more importantly...rests! Naturally, a few students can find it a little tricky to take it all in, so lesson by lesson, section by section, I break it down.

    And I know a few in DC Chat would roll their eyes, but also amongst the easy charts I've done (because a student wanted to learn it, so hey, I notated it!) is:
    8)Dead Leaves And The Dirty Ground (The White Stripes) very simple rhythm by Meg White...however.. got to remember what you think and what is are two different things...when I notated it, was surprised to figure out two verses have structures are ten bars in length, not 8, 12 or a usual multiple of 4. The last one only is a regular 8. So, the rhythm's a cinch to play, but you'll still need the chart to get through as a beginner.

    And there are more easy and difficult charts that I get people through, I think I've transcribed about 8-10 years worth, averaging a new chart a week or a month allowing for time and how simple or complex. But those eight I mentioned are good for beginners wanting to learn how to read, whilst addressing a few (not all) basic fundamentals.
    Last edited by Drumbledore; 12-26-2010 at 12:01 PM.
    "...it's the Paradigm Of The Cosmos!" Stewart Copeland on Youtube

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  7. #7

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    Alright thanks for all the advice guys...the only problem is that getting lessons isn't really an option. Don't ask why, that's just how it is. I'll check out those songs you suggested Drumbledore, you seem like you know what you're talking about.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by DolphinBrick View Post
    I'll check out those songs you suggested Drumbledore, you seem like you know what you're talking about.
    Drumbledore hasn't been around here a long time, but he is already a well respected member. He is obviously a drum teacher who knows what he is doing. You are smart to pay attention to him DolphinBrick.
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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by DolphinBrick View Post
    Alright thanks for all the advice guys...the only problem is that getting lessons isn't really an option. Don't ask why, that's just how it is. I'll check out those songs you suggested Drumbledore, you seem like you know what you're talking about.
    Thats to bad, sorry to hear that. Thing is, a drum teacher can teach you propper stick handling, timing and tempo, cymbal striking, drumming theory, rudiments ect. Rudiments, theory and timing are a biggy. I've learned so much more by an experienced drummer watching me and correcting mistakes and bad habits.

    But if it's not possible for you to get lessons, make sure you keep comming back here with questions. There are tons of great drummers on this site that can answer about any question on drumming you have or problems and they give great advice in a very respectful way. So don't be shy about anything drumming.

    Just remember. As a drummer, and I'm new at this too, I've learned one important bit of advice and you'll hear it from alot of drummers on this site. This is that though playing along with songs are important, you should strive to also be creative in your own way. Take time out from playing with songs to experiment with your own style.

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  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by DolphinBrick View Post
    I'm a complete beginner for drums, I don't know what to learn first or play first. I can play the basic beat that's on all of the beginner youtube videos with kick pedal on 1 and 3 and stuff. I've played rock band so I'm not completely clueless about my coordination and rhythm, I just don't know where to start. Can anyone help me? (I have an electronic kit if it means anything)
    Let your intuition guide you. Take a basic beat and then add an extra beat on to that here and there and keep experimenting. That's what I did in the beginning days before I could afford drum lessons. Your creative mind can carry you far. You just have to trust it.

    DB... there's also the "Drum Links" drop down box at top right. Some cool links there to more free drum info.

    Good luck!
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  11. #11

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    I've been practicing that paradiddle, the RLRR LRLL thing but I can't get my left hand in the groove of it. My right hand picked it up easily, but that because since I was little I've been always tapping beats on things, my right hand always got faster beats :P. Where would paradiddles be used in songs and stuff?


    To chewgravel, thanks a lot for the private message, it's just I can't respond until I have more posts :/

  12. #12

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    I like to play to rap tunes ,they have a built in click track! Just do your thing.

  13. #13

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    Well post some more things to get that count up
    Drummer Chick

  14. #14

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    I asked this question when I first started playing. I think a lot of seasoned drummers forget just how hard you struggle when you start. Because even some of the "easy" songs were really tough for a beginner. Basically what you're looking for is something that is straight 8th notes with almost no fills and at a slow tempo.

    The song I found the easiest to pick up when I was starting was "Yellow" by Coldplay. Grab the tab from ttabs (http://www.ttabs.com/tabs.php?id=235575). The groove is simple with a little persistance you'll be playing it in no time.

    Good luck!

  15. #15

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    I like the Joe Satriani, Not Of This Earth suggestion by Drumbledore. It's straight constant eighth notes with the right hand ( if your righty) Kick on every 1, 5, 6. Snare on every 3 and 7.
    This is an excellent basic beat to start off with.
    Last edited by Olimpass; 12-30-2010 at 03:12 AM.

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by pastor_bob View Post
    Drumbledore hasn't been around here a long time, but he is already a well respected member. He is obviously a drum teacher who knows what he is doing. You are smart to pay attention to him DolphinBrick.
    Wow....I have ...respeck?? **Sniff**....t'ank YOOOOUUU PB!!

    (PB forgot to add that I'm a certified smart aaa-...leck)

    Lol, tah PB....but even teachers need to learn, and boy do I learn sometimes from a few of the guys I teach. Really, and it's only my opinion mind, you don't necessarily teach....you create an atmosphere that allows a student to eventually teach themselves.

    But hey, have fun along the way too....nothing too sucky about this job folks LOL.
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  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by DolphinBrick View Post
    I've been practicing that paradiddle, the RLRR LRLL thing but I can't get my left hand in the groove of it. My right hand picked it up easily, but that because since I was little I've been always tapping beats on things, my right hand always got faster beats :P. Where would paradiddles be used in songs and stuff?


    To chewgravel, thanks a lot for the private message, it's just I can't respond until I have more posts :/
    I think people missed this question mate...

    A simple answer is that paradiddles in themselves are rarely used in a song, but the rudiment itself is used to learn control, and build technique. Basically, as you have discovered, you have a strong hand a weak hand. Like most people you are right hand dominant, so your left hand has a lot of catching up to do. The paradiddle is great to see this, and great to over come it.

    Get some sort of metronome, if you have an iPod or android device you can use them to download metronome apps, otherwise buy a metronome or find one online and use that. Set it slow until you can do your paradiddles smooth and evenly, then gradually increase the tempo of the metronome. It's slow and painful at first and boring as heck, but one day things will fall into place and you'll be flying along and finding ways they can be used in songs as part of fills or even to build rhythms around, as shown by a teacher I used watch named Chris Quinlan. He has a youtube channel actually....

    here's an example of a double paradiddle rhythm using piccolo toms...

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8rKFSgc5ylw"]YouTube - Double Paradiddle Melody with Double Kick[/ame]
    "What consumes your mind, controls your life" - So, what consumes your mind?

  18. #18

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    Here's another example of him using it to actually create a rhythm

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GmvyA7YdcoE"]YouTube - Drum n' Bass Paradiddle Lesson - mm369[/ame]
    "What consumes your mind, controls your life" - So, what consumes your mind?

  19. #19

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    Practicing triplets is great for hand strength too. Besides the usual RLR LRL combination, I'd also recommend a couple others: RLL RLL and the other one being LLR LLR. Just so you can work more with the left hand.
    "...it's the Paradigm Of The Cosmos!" Stewart Copeland on Youtube

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  20. #20

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    One thing I'm not sure anyone else has mentioned is when you are doing any rudiments, or something new DO IT SLOW!!! It is key to learning anything new, do it slow and everytime you practice at it try and get a little bit faster, do not tense up always stay relaxed.

    Also I noticed you said lessons aren't an option but thats a real shame, I have been playing for 17 years without any lessons and only in the last two years have I learned rudiments and proper sticking techniques and had to unlearn all the bad habits I had taught myself.

    Oh...and if I haven't said already, welcome to DC, DolphinBrick, let the learning and sharing commence.
    Mike.

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  21. #21

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    Welcome to the board DB.

    Youve already rec'd a ton of good info and tips and Im going to add drum rolls to that list.

    Start in the center of the drum and see how close you are able to get the tips of your drum stick with out hitting the other one. Slowly move off to the right edge of the head, back to center then off to your left.

    Remember the longer you practice and the more often you can practice, the quicker you will learn and the more you learn the easier other drum related issues seem to be to learn.
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  22. #22

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    Paradiddles are in use all over the place. Sometimes just not noticed as such:
    Almost in the basic rock beat between left hand and feet(Lhand-Rkick-LLhand-Rkick-Lhand-RRkick). Syncopated paradiddles common in fills in part or whole. You'll see when you do them for a while how to incorporate them partially or totally.
    Last edited by slinglander; 01-16-2011 at 04:38 PM. Reason: spelling

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