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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 stroke so that you produce the “ga-dang” part of the the rhythm with only one movement of the hand. You then get three sounds with only two hand movements.

When playing the ride, I recommend using French Grip, i.e. with the thumb on top. The stick pivots over the forefinger and middle finger and if you persist, you can get two even sounds from one hand movement.

Please be aware there are several approaches to playing the swing ride pattern. This is the one I use most of the time and the way I teach my students to play a swing.

Thanks to my colleague, guitar teacher, recording and videoing guy Rodrigo Lemos for filming and editing this video.