Category Archives: Drum Lessons

Playing Ghost Notes In A Shuffle Groove Like Reelin’ In The Years

I’ve been listening to Steely Dan’s Album Can’t Buy A Thrill a lot lately and two songs really stand out. One is Dirty Work, a very laid back, greasy and dark tune with a funky groove. The other is Reelin’ In The Years which bounces along beautifully, driven by Jim Hodder’s light and fluffy shuffle […]

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How To Play The Jazz Ride (Swing) Pattern

Here’s my latest YouTube video demonstrating the way I play the swing pattern on the ride cymbal. I learned this approach from the great Ralph Salmins and find it’s a great way to play an even, relaxed and swinging jazz ride. The key thing is to spend plenty of time working on the two-for-one rebound […]

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Developing Coordination With Afrobeat Drumming Pt. 4

This is the final post of a four part series of exercises to help develop your coordination with Afrobeat drumming inspired by Tony Allen’s first Afrobeat groove.

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Developing Coordination With Afrobeat Drumming Pt. 3

If you haven’t seen them already, Check out part 1 and part 2. So let’s continue to develop our coordination with Tony Allen’s first groove of Afrobeat. Now that we can play a bunch of different ride and snare patterns, it’s time to do some work on the left foot. A unique aspect of Tony […]

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The Drum Bits For James Brown’s I Got You

Here’s a quick guide to the main drum grooves for James Brown’s I Got You which should be in any drummer’s repertoire, if you ask me. Melvin Parker played drums on this classic soul number. Download the sheet music PDF here – Essential Components of I Got You by James Brown And here’s a video […]

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The Groove Bits For James Brown’s Cold Sweat

Here’s the main groove bits for James Brown’s Cold Sweat played originally by Clyde Stubblefield. Download the sheet music PDF here: James Brown – Cold Sweat Bits.

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Drum Intro For Tony Allen’s Go Back From His Latest Album

Damon Albarn is a pretty lucky guy since his rock star status allows him to play with musicians of the calibre of Tony Allen. Having said that, he’s quite good at songwriting and Go Back from the album Film Of Life is really good. On the album version of the song is this intro which […]

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Funky Left-Hand Open Hi Hat Splashes

Here’s a sheet of exercises I wrote to develop the facility to play open hi hat splashes on the ee’s and ah’s using the left hand. These exercises are based on the famous Bernard Purdie lick you can hear in Aretha Franklin’s Rocksteady and which is a staple of funk drumming. If you watch Purdie […]

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Drum Lessons In North-West London

A quick note to let you know I still have a few free slots available for drumming students in the North-West London area. Please get in touch if you want drum lessons starting in September. I teach in Mill Hill and Colindale and can work with people of all abilities from beginners to advanced. I […]

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Lady Marmalade Drum Lesson

I am finding myself doing video lessons and bunging them up on Youtube for students in various contexts. Here is a lesson on the famous groove for Lady Marmalade by Labelle, played originally by drummer Herman “Roscoe” Ernest III. First, let’s watch him explain the groove’s provenance. The clip is off a DVD called New […]

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