16 Mar, 2016

1 Note Groupings with "Lead Hand" motion


One of the most challenging rhythms for drummers to play is off-beat 16th notes. Having the ability to place single 16ths on either the "e" or the "ah" of the beat (or as I would call them the "ka" and “mi”) is by no means an easy feat. In this series of posts we have been studying all the possible 16th note subdivisions and practicing playing them against a “check pattern”. Now we’ve come to the final category, the 1-note groupings. You’ll notice I’ve left the most difficult groupings until last.

Although not technically a grouping as such (since when has 1 been a group?) we call them a group because it’s useful to categorise 16th note subdivisions as either 1, 2, or 3 note groupings.

I call these the “yin and yang” because #A and #C are the easiest subdivisions of all 14 so far, and #B and #D the most difficult. #A is essentially just playing on the beat, and #C is a duple division playing off-beat 8th notes, making them easy to place. However #B and #D are extremely difficult. You have to feel all three 16th note rests to accurately place the “ka” and the “mi”. Try voicing these rests on the toms or on the rim of the snare at first, then try eventually just thinking them.

Just as the in previous weeks play one bar of the check pattern followed by one bar of a 1-note grouping. Keep the same sticking as the check pattern, only each time notice you are omitting three strokes.

Have these exercise helped with your 16th note timings? Leave a comment below to let me know what you think of the 1-note groupings and what tempo you can get them to. Remember, share your practice videos on the Facebook page and tag them with #WarmupWednesday. Happy practicing.