Even More Clave Independence

Some Stuff Im working on 2Having already dug pretty deeply into Ignacio Berroa’s fabulous book, “Groovin In Clave,” which is to clave what Chapin’s famous work,“Advanced Techniques For The Modern Drummer” was to the jazz ride cymbal pattern, I’ve found that I need more interesting things to do with right hand clave. If you read my blog regularly, or if you’ve been following my clave explorations, you’ll already know that I’ve been creating my own clave exercises for a while. I’ve also begun writing about this on my other blog, which is located on my personal “professional drummer” website, www.markfeldman.org. The most recent worksheet on clave was written there: www.markfeldman.org/some-stuff-im-working-on-1/.

So why more of this?

One of the things that really excites me about playing right hand clave is the idea of being able to solo against it. This means that I’ve got to go deeper. So if the patterns on this worksheet appear too complicated to be useful, just know that I am seeking total freedom to play intricate hand/foot combinations while maintaing the clave pattern with my cymbal hand.

Let me give you a little more information on what I’m going for here. I love Keith Carlock’s playing and his soloing is a revelation because he has applied the idea of jazz interplay between the snare, bass drum and hi-hat to funk. One of Keith’s main innovations is that he can solo while maintaining an eighth note cymbal ostinato. I have been working on this myself and with these clave exercises, I am seeking to use this same idea only while maintaining the clave rhythm instead of the eighth note pattern. So, you will notice that the patterns are starting to get funk related. I love how Keith “fills in the holes” with his left hand and I am seeking to do the same here…..all while playing clave with my right hand.

So, explanations aside, here is the latest worksheet for you to download: Some Stuff Im working on 2.