Friday, February 14, 2014

“When in doubt, groove.”

Branford Marsalis's drummer Justin Faulkner gives a drum clinic at the Seattle, and says lots of great stuff:

Part 2 is after the break:

[h/t to S_Funk at Drummerworld]


Thomasz said...

Thanks for putting these up - fascinating stuff.

It made me think that there's still some controversy over the swung ride thing.

I think elsewhere you've said that the ride pattern is not based on the triplet subdivision, but more as a nebulous, personal interpretation of the skip note placement. But here, Faulkner is pretty adamant about its being specifically triplets.

I suppose it's a bit of both?

Todd Bishop said...

Right— I did like everything he had to say, and wouldn't dispute any of it— he's obviously very much about what works on the stand/on the job. But there are also many examples of well-known professional players doing exactly the things he's saying you shouldn't do. I think most of the best players I know will vary their interpretation according to tempo, the music they're playing, and who they're playing with— a more difficult thing to do if you've just been thinking “swing is triplets and that's it.” I think my view is fairly nuanced— not “you should not play triplets”, but more “whether you're playing triplets or not, you usually should not be thinking triplets.” And of course the usually is operative; there are times you when you can think triplets— on a 12/8-feel ballad, on a shuffle, or on a slower Elvin-type feel.

And I should clarify that my swing feel is most often very close to triplets, if not triplets exactly.

Thomasz said...

Thanks - a well put response. I get it now. My apologies for being slightly pedantic.

It's interesting when he gives a warning about not copying Tony Williams' 'straighter' swing. In a big ensemble context that might get you fired... but then again it all depends on what's being played, of course.

I suppose you just gotta listen... and be smart.