I’ve been writing a lot about independence lately. That’s because I’ve been thinking about groove and pocket and how to make stuff feel really good. I’ve also been thinking, as I often do, about how to sound different from other drummers. To combine these two thoughts, working on independence with unusual cymbal patterns began to make sense to me. And when I started experimenting with “weird” cymbal ostinatos like the “1e-a2-and-a” pattern that I’ve been writing about, I began to realize that there are many cymbal ostinatos that you pretty much never hear any drummers play, and that might actually sound good.
By the way, here are links to the articles on the “1e-a2-and-a” pattern if you’re interested:
I see the fact that no one is using these patterns as an opportunity to sound unique. I understand that sounding unique at the expense of sounding good or tasteful is a mistake, so I have to trust myself (and I do, after many years of playing) to use my ears and use “good taste.” But so far, my exploration into this world of unique cymbal patterns has yielded good results.
One that I’ve only started with is playing the last three notes of a group of 16th notes as an ostinato. I think it has a lot of possible playing applications. When I shed this, I seem to naturally accent the last note (the “a”). I really like the way it sounds.
So, to get started, I offer you part 1, which begins the process of independence by working on eighth note ideas and grooves with your snare and bass drum. The right hand simply plays the following:
Here is the PDF with the first 22 exercises to begin developing this independence: “E-And-A” Independence Part 1.
Download it, print it out, and take it to your practice room.
Let me know what you think by commenting on this post.