Mike Michalkow’s face is known to almost everybody who did at least ten minutes of online searching for drumming material. That sole fact gives him credibility.
So, when I put my hands on his DVD, “Moeller Method Secrets”, I watched the material with a totally positive attitude, expecting great content, and that is what I received.
I decided to pen this review of his course for drummers who aren’t sure what the course is about and would like to know my opinion of this DVD drumming course.
Named after – what a surprise! – it’s inventor, Stanford A. Moeller, the Moeller technique is a group of useful snare drumming practices allowing drummers to use their hands more effectively, to enhance their accentuation skills and produce a richer sound by investing less energy.
Undoubtedly, “the Moeller” has become one of the most renowned drumming techniques nowadays. Well, that is not hard to understand – as Michalkow’s DVD represents quite nicely, the advantages of this seemingly simple technique are hard to measure.
The essence of the technique is the Moeller stroke, a special way of moving the drumstick by applying a whipping motion that starts from your elbow and ends, moving through your hand, in the drumstick – or maybe on the drumhead. The stroke is fueled by the energy gained from the whipping motion, which changes the way the drumstick rebounds in its foundations: you can pull beautiful triplets with a single whipping motion in a controlled manner.
Mike Michalkow does not only cover what is the immediate subject of the program. He gives a very comprehensive presentation of hand technique. He starts out by explaining the differences between the traditional and the standard grip, showing us how to practice each. Then he builds up slowly, presenting the different branches of the actual Moeller technique. He explains patiently how to play the technique using different stick heights producing different sound levels.
The progressive approach the DVD follows is very beginner-friendly, since it covers everything from holding the drumstick to advanced accenting techniques. For starters, that is awesome because you do not have to go around looking for introductory lessons so that you can understand what the DVD in question is about later. You are given the chance to build your skills from the ground up.
On the other hand, advanced players may also benefit from watching the DVD from the beginning. For example, I realized a grip error of mine after years of drumming, and I am sure that many successful drummers have tiny errors that keep them from getting better and reaching their potential.
Moeller Method Secrets is a specialized drumming course that teaches you great techniques and includes the following:
– Drums Rudiment Video
– Lock Grip Technique Video
– Drumming Essentials eBook
– Drum Kits Lessons eBook
– Unlimited Email, Phone & Forum Support!
No, not too much, at least. One thing that I could not explain was the absence of the “wow” sensation while watching the DVD. For sure, Mike Michalkow is a spectacular drummer, and he surely does the job of explaining the subject very well. Still yet, you sometimes find yourself looking for sensation, you find yourself craving so that you could say “ah, I learned this from Dave Weckl”.
Of course, this might sound silly, because it is silly. It is a matter of personal preference, and vanity should never play a role in the education of a musician. As a matter of fact, Mike Michalkow is one of the best instructors to be found, and his first DVD offers really valuable information.
Where from here? We highly recommend Moeller Method Secrets…
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