Thursday, June 23, 2016

A Funky Primer: double-time feel lesson

Getting back into teaching out of a book I haven't used in some time: A Funky Primer, by my former college professor Charles Dowd. I felt it was getting a little dated, and I was putting all my energy into developing a Syncopation-based rock/funk method (which I'll be releasing in book form whenever I can finish it)... plus a student walked off with my copy. I bought it again recently, and, you know, it's actually quite decent for functional timekeeping vocabulary for any straight-8th note music with a backbeat. Much of the stuff you wouldn't necessarily play verbatim in real music, but it teaches you a lot of important moves. So we're using it again.

Here's a little unit I was doing with a student: a few selected patterns from pages 25 and 28, centered around making a double time feel. I extended the exercises a little bit by making some of the bass drum notes optional— play all the patterns with and without the circled bass drum notes. These are from page 25:

These patterns from page 28 are also helpful:

Altogether, with the optional versions, that's 18 patterns; an easy little unit. Students tend to gravitate towards their own personal “generic” medium tempo, and these double time feel patterns seem to be a good way to instantly get them to play much faster than they're accustomed to.


Jim Cheseborough said...

Very cool.
Hey, what's the circled bass drum notion mean?

Jim Cheseborough said...
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