If the same old basic blues drum beats have you down in the dumps, then no worries. The blues are the basics of music, but they can also be a bit tricky at times.
Intermediate blues drum beats are the second level of basic drum beats for the blues. Before we get on to the examples (and we all know you are itching to play) there are a few things we need to go over.
Firstly, you need to analyze the way you hold your sticks. If your grip is comfortable you can move on to the next step. If it isn’t then you need to try a different grip. Having an uncomfortable grip can wreak havoc upon your coordination.
Next you need to critique your own power. The blues are not music styling based upon hard hitting, cymbal breaking, drum head snapping strokes. If you are deafening yourself when you strike then you are playing too hard. If you have already deafened yourself to the point of not realizing how hard you are hitting, have a close friend come listen to you and tell you.
The final piece on our pre-example checklist is a double ender. Can you read sheet music? If you can, then move on to part two. If you can’t then you need to learn as to be able to read the examples. There are many lessons available for free that can teach you to read basic drum notation.
Part two of the final preparation is; can you sight read? Being able to read sheet music is great, but if you can’t read while you are playing you may forget notes, jumble note values, or strike the wrong notes mistakenly. Once more, there are many lessons for free that can teach you to read basic drum notation, so if you don’t know how to, take full advantage of them.
The shuffle is a staple in blues music, but because of its odd rest placement (the middle note of each triplet) it can be difficult for some. This intermediate blues drum beat, one learn properly, can take your blues drumming to a whole new level.
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Note the overall, shambling feel of the piece, how it seems to trot along. This is the signature feel of the shuffle. Like all exercises, when approaching this one, start off slowly with a metronome, making sure to strike simultaneous notes simultaneously.
Our second intermediate blues drum beat is a shuffle using ghost notes on the snare instead of rests.
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This is exercise is the reason why it was so important that you be sure you are proficient at controlling your power, have a comfortable grip, and be well coordinated. The added ghost notes may not seem like much, but you must control your power when striking them and they must come out evenly. This is a more modern sounding blues drumming line, influenced heavily by jazz, so it is very important that you be well aware of all your movements and note waste any energy.
Using a metronome, practice these two intermediate blues drum beat patterns. Use the techniques given to your advantage; add them to your own playing style. Practice hard, and soon you will come to master these intermediate blues drum beats!
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