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Thread: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

  1. #1

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    Default Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    Greetings, all.

    I am one of the drummers for my university's Jazz Band, and we have several swing tunes this semester. One of them reads "swing in 2" for most of the song, but during the section that's open for solos, it reads "swing in 4". The tempo doesn't change, and I don't understand exactly what the difference is. What is the difference between a swing rhythm "in 2" and "in 4"?

    Thanks,
    Jason
    My 1960 Ludwig Drumset
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    Splash = 12
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  2. #2

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    Usually it's how the section of the song is phrased with relation to the chords. The first section will have a "2 feel" while the solo section will have a 4 feel. Listen to the song and you'll be able to hear it.
    - Tom

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  3. #3

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    I think of it as a bass drum feel, in four would be typical four-on-the-floor along with a walking bassline and two would be bass on 1 and 3, maybe to go with a halftime bassline.

  4. #4

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    I would interpret that as follows:

    Swing in two = Bass on 1 and 3, Hat/Snare on 2 and 4. Ride cymbal 1 2 + 3 4 + (swung of course)

    Swing in four = Bass on 1 Hat/Snare on 3, Ride 1 2 3 4 + (swung of course)

    So it would kinda be a half time feel with your feet/snare, but the tempo would stay the same on your cymbal minus the + of 2.

    The swing in four section would open you a lot for play with bass/snare interplay to accent the soloist.


    Tan

  5. #5

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    Quote Originally Posted by mainedrummah View Post
    I think of it as a bass drum feel, in four would be typical four-on-the-floor along with a walking bassline and two would be bass on 1 and 3, maybe to go with a halftime bassline.
    I think you might be right there. The sax player in my band could verify this when I see him at the gig tonight, as he's pretty well schooled in jazz theory.
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  6. #6

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    Here's a lesson from Dunbar in "Rock" swing in 2 and 4. It's about the melody of the song and changing the feel of the song with the drums.

    [ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=303mB_GslLU&feature=related"]YouTube - Journey - You´re On Your Own[/ame]
    Last edited by Riverr1; 02-22-2011 at 09:42 PM.

  7. #7

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    It doesn't help that every arranger has his/her own interpretation, but in general, the following is true.

    Play a fairly fast standard swing beat, with the bass drum on one and three, snare on 2 and 4, and count, with the bass Drum:- "1-2-2-2-3-2-4-2-5-2-6-2-7-2-8-2" and you've just played 8 bars of "Swing in 2" Now without stopping or changing anything else, play bass drum on all four beats, and counting with the bass drum:- "1-2-3-4-2-2-3-4-3-2-3-4-4-2-3-4-5-2-3-4-6-2-3-4-7-2-3-4-8-2-3-4" and you've just played 8 bars of "Swing in 4".

    Of course, you don't have to play strictly 2 or 4 in the bar Bass drum when you're playing the tune, but this illustrates the feel change.

    Beware though, the change from "in 4" to "in 2" is often used as a way of doubling the tempo and vice versa. You're as well to check with the MD on this.

    Andy

  8. #8

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    Default Re: Swing In 2? Swing In 4?

    When a ' 2 feel ' is required I often accent only the ands of the trad ride pattern . ding , ding , AH ding , ding , AH ding etc

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