Top Qualities Of Good Drummers You Can Develop From Drum Lessons (Part 1 of 2)
An anonymous author uttered these words: “An excellent drummer can make a mediocre band sound great, and an average drummer can make a great band sound mediocre.” Hmmm…Did this quote just put pressure on you to persevere with your drum lessons? This quote about drummers may be overrated. But you could never deny the fact that a great drum playing keeps the music tight and solid.
If you were to audition as drummer of a band,, here is a checklist of the most sought-after qualities that make a good drummer:
What are the top qualities that make a great drummer?
1) Physical Technique
a) Body posture
i) A drummer should sit-up straight. Slouching is a no-no.
ii) A drummer’s stool should be set at the right, comfortable height. The height of your stool could help you set your body’s posture and movement.
b) Proper grip for drumsticks: In drum lessons, you will learn the different ways of holding a drumstick. Yet, all these stress on the correct grip. It will power-up your performance, allow bounce, movement, and control, and prevent muscle and hand injuries.
c) Developing muscle memory: Muscle memory is the level of playing where you can confidently say that you can ‘play a drum pattern in your sleep or with eyes closed’. It is ‘auto-programming’ your muscles to move by habit, without requiring too much thought or effort. This makes room for better executions of patterns, grooves, and frills. It also allows you to multi-task by focusing on your other roles as timekeeper or listening to the rhythm.
2) Skills Technique
a. Sticks and Pedals: A good drummer has marked a solid technique on how he handles sticks and how he attacks the pedals. As mentioned above, there are numerous grip techniques and pedal techniques that you can master over time. Use the best methods that work for you and what the song calls for.
b. Tempo : Songs have a wide range of tempo. A great drummer should be able to play at a speed required for by the song. A rock drummer may often play at full speed, but they can play rock ballads too.
c. Dynamics or volume: Drums are not always played at full volume. It takes a good drummer to know the right moments when to tone-up or tone-down.
d. Listening skills: Drummers actually don’t just bang to the beat of their own drum. They have to drive the beat. And at the same time, play in-sync with the rest of the band. Listening is crucial for you to able to do both.
e. Timing: Being touted as the ‘masters of timing’ may sound like a tall order for drummers. Yet, timing skills would really get you the job. Drummers are expected to have an ‘internal clock to keep the rhythm and tempo precise, steady, and flowing. Playing with the metronome is good to start with. However, a drummer should build inner confidence to carry the cudgels of driving and keeping time.
If you are an aspiring drummer, take your drum lessons to heart. You may be naturally gifted, but the above drumming skills are developed and honed through practice and discipline.