Monday, May 07, 2012

How to play the brushes

Now we're talking- here's something substantial for you: I was able to shame Ted @ Trap'd into finally labelling his posts, and now I can link to his entire great series on playing the brushes. I plan on working through it this evening:

I've lost all patience with 95% of all "lesson" videos, but I love these things.

A little more after the break:

My big revelation about this came in about 1999, when a trad jazz organization chartered a music cruise on the boat I was working on. That week the bassist and I did our regular gig, then went to the upstairs lounge to accompany the guest musicians for another 2-3 hours, which I did with a snare drum and brushes. I've never had any kind of real schooling with my brush playing- I've never really worked much of anything up in the practice room, apart from learning a few basic moves. I developed my whole (fairly limited, functional) thing on the job.

So after a few days of playing with the trad guys, some of the fancier moves I would see the real brush masters doing just started emerging. They're very natural to the music, and to the way the body interacts with it, and I believe they came out of the countless hours players spent on the stand. So don't sweat fully developing these things in the practice room- get them together, then get playing with people. That holds for everything in drumming, actually.


Ted Warren said...

Thanks for posting this Todd and your comment about playing them with people is right on the money!

Todd Bishop said...

Thanks! And thanks for again for doing this series- excellent work, man!