Friday, March 19, 2021

Reed tweak: filling the long gaps

Here's a tweak to an ordinary straight 8th note Syncopation practice method: right hand plays the melody rhythm, left hand fills in the remaining 8th notes. Usually with the RH on a cymbal, with the bass drum in unison, left hand on the snare drum, like so:  

We could call this the stick control interpretation, because the result is exactly what we'd get if you played the first pages of Stone with the Rs on the cym/bass drum, Ls on the snare drum, each played with the indicated hand. This is the major Reed method you use to get an ECM-type feel.

With that basic drill, the left hand fills in one, two, or three 8th notes in a row. With this tweak we're going to play a left handed paradiddle where the left would have played two notes, and a left handed double paradiddle where the left would have played three. Play the single lefts normally. Do this with pp. 30-32 and 34-45 of Reed (current edition). 

First play these warmups— they cover all the forms the paradiddle fills will occur when practicing the method out of Syncopation:

Here are the first six lines of the well known p. 38 (née 37) Syncopation Exercise 1, written out with this tweak. I don't feel like writing up a full-blown key, so you'll have to get out your book and compare the two. 

This is not unlike my recent uptempo method, in that we have to do some next-level reading— we have to do different things with spaces (or runs of 8ths) of different lengths. It seems daunting in the abstract, but it's reasonably easy when you just do it. 

Finally, try using your own four or six note stickings or patterns as well. Best if they start with the left hand, and release with the right, at first. I'll share some of mine soon.  

Get the pdf

1 comment:

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