Drumming seems endless. There are thousands of drumming techniques, and each technique branches of into half a dozen more. If you are looking to keep track of your basic drumming techniques in between drum lessons and tutoring, we have a treat for you.
In this section of the website, we will give you a list comprised of the most basic and most used drumming techniques you will come across.
The single stroke: the single stroke is the most basic rudiment of all. It is a simple stroke of your drum stick using the wrist and the two smallest digits (ring finger and pinky finger).
The double stroke: the double stroke is a doubled single stroke. This technique makes full usage of the bounce, which is the technique in which you bounce your stick off of your palm using your two smaller digits (ring finger and pinky finger) to redirect the stick towards your drum head.
The diddle: the diddle is a double stroke played at the current speed of a piece. This means that if it is surrounded by sixteenth notes, the diddle will be a sixteenth note double stroke.
The paradiddle: the paradiddle is an alternating stroke which employs two single strokes follow by a double stroke. In the case of a right handed drummer, the paradiddle stroking pattern would go; right, left, right, right.
The drag: the drag is a double stroke played at twice the speed of the current piece. This means that if you are playing an eighth note piece, the drag will be a double stroke sixteenth note pair. This creates a dragging effect along the end of a note.
The flam: the flam is an alternating note technique. The first hand plays a grace note, followed up by an accented note using the opposite hand. This creates a vast contrast between the two notes, giving an extreme textural difference.
The roll: a drum technique which employs a continuous alternating fluid motion. In the case of a double stroke, the roll would consist of a double stroke by the main hand, followed by the off hand, and the pattern would continue at a steady tempo.
On beat: the quarter note rhythm in a 4/4 measure, or the main beat in a measure. Counted as the one, two, three, four, etc. note. Most commonly accented note in modern music.
Off beat: the note follow the on beat. This note is referred to by ‘and.’ This note is commonly accented in funk and jazz.
Syncopation: accenting awkwardly. Syncopation is the style of playing which accents odd and sometimes unpredictable notes. To the non-musical ear syncopation tends to sound random, as the notes are usually unevenly placed from one another falling on strange beats.
Ghost/Grace note: the grace/ghost note is a note that is felt, not heard. The grace/ghost note is barely audible and is little more than a brush of the drum head.
Accented note: an accented note is a note that is played loudly with extra force as to bring further attention to it. Accented notes are commonly used to bring full attention to an important note or grouping of notes.
#1 – 2 Common Drumstick Grips That Are Used for Different Purposes
Depending on the kinds and styles of music you want to play, there are essentially 2 kinds of drumstick grips that you need to learn: the traditional grip and the matched grip.
#2 – Improve Your Groove by Playing With Dynamics And Feelings
Have you ever wondered why some drummers stand out from the crowd with their playing while others just sound like ‘the others’? The key lies in dynamics and how subtle variations can actually define you.
#3 – Playing a One Handed Drum Roll in Less Than 30 Minutes
What are one-handed drum rolls? Well, as the name suggests, 1-handed drum rolls is effectively using performed using the speed of one single hand. Note: practice is required here!
#4 – Secrets of Simplistic Drumming And Why It Works
Let’s be honest here. Whenever we play drums, we tend to show off our skills at every given opportunity. While this can draw the attention to you, this might also compromise the overall timing and rhythm of the band. Sometimes, simple is better.
#5 – Speed Drumming Techniques For Pace And Power
Today’s lesson will touch on essential speed techniques that thrash and heavy metal players will find very useful. Of course, speed and power without control is just garbage to the ears.
#6 – Let’s Get Buzzing With Multiple Bounce Roll
Commonly referred to as the buzz roll, the multiple bounce is a very commonly heard feature in many kinds of music today. With some practice, you too can add this into your arsenal of beats.
#7 – How To Apply The Free Stroke Technique
The free stroke technique was first popularized by the military in the early 1800s. Not only does it enable the drummer to have better control, it also allows the drummer to move with free motions.
#8 – Microphone Techniques And Drums to Get the Best Sounds
Why do you need to learn to mic up a drumset? Well, in live performances or in studio recordings, understanding how to get a good tone and sound will mean that half the battle is won already.
#9 – 3 Methods of Working The Cymbals
When playing the drums, most people tend to overlook how versatile the cymbals can be. Between rudiments and solos, different techniques on the cymbals can help you achieve a huge array of different tones.
#10 – How to Make Creative Sounds on the Drumset
Being creative on the drumset and playing unexpected things can really help your skill levels to improve by leaps and bounds. It can also help you explore your way around the instrument.
#11 – 2 Easy Ways to Embellishing Your Grooves Using Ghost Notes
Learning to embellish your fills can really make your personal style stand out. Did you know that most drummers tend to overlook this creative process? If you want to look for alternative ways to spice up your playing, this is something you should read now.
#12 - Moeller Method Strokes And Tricks
What is the Moeller method and why should you care? Well, if you want to maximize your power, strokes and gain full control of your hand movements, this is an essential skill to pick up.