In my last post I shared a bunch of exercises based on Tony Allen’s first Afrobeat groove that worked on some different ride patterns to help free us up to improvise with Afrobeat drumming. In this post we’ll look at changing the snare part around still based on the same original groove.
The object of these exercises is to develop the facility to improvise freely with all limbs. The way I work on stuff like this is to practice each individual exercise until it feels easy and smooth. I am enjoying playing to a metronome that’s set to click 16ths, it allows me to be very fussy with my timing. Once I feel that the patterns are settling in, I’ll play them in sequence maybe four or eight bars at a time. If that’s feeling good, I do the same to music. Finally, I will play four bar phrases with three of the original groove and one of a variation until I can do all of that in sequence to music. During this process I always spend some time improvising with the patterns I’m getting good at along to music.
For practicing you can try something like Fela’s Go Slow or Look & Laugh. Any of the slower tracks really.
Download the PDF here: Variations On The First Afrobeat Groove – Snare Patterns