The importance of being realistic about time frames

doggyd69b

Drum Expert
This is a great insight, and it hits home for me. I've been playing for a while and I've hit a plateau of sorts with my playing. I've never been very quick around the kit, and for the last few years I've been thinking about speed a lot, for the hands and the feet. Well, to get faster, I need to polish my technique, to make it smoother and more effortless. So I've been working on that. Building my weak hand, things of that nature. Several years later, I don't feel like I've gained much in terms of speed, ironically. But my stroke is better, and the drums sound better when I hit them than they did 3 years ago. I'm more relaxed and I enjoy it more.

I recently played a St. Patrick's Day gig at a bar where they had 7 or 8 bands all using the same beat-up PDP drum kit. The sound engineer told me that the drums sounded better when I was playing them, clean and punchy. If that's the result of 3 years of working on "speed", then I'll take it!
I say don't worry too much about the speed, think about clean hits vs fast and sloppy, some drummers are able to practice fast parts at a very slow speed then progressively speed them up until the desired speed is reached....(Actually, most drummers will be able to do that just fine). I find that way harder than playing the parts at the right speed. Yes, at first I make a few mistakes and the part is not clean but after a few attempts, I usually am able to nail the part and move on., It is also a lot different when you are just practicing the part alone than when you are playing a song and the part comes in at some point because a lot of people tend to anticipate and miss the correct timing even though they are capable of playing the part alone just fine... Regardless of which drummer you are, I say focus on clarity/cleanliness and the speed is secondary.
Dave Lombardo's fills (Slayer) sound good not because he is fast but because he is a precise drummer. his fills are not particularly fast but they serve the songs well, Paul Bostaph's fills are faster (Took Lombardo's place) not sure if you are familiar with Slayer's history (check out Ghost of war for an example of Lombardo's fills, and Dittohead for an example of Bostaph's fills). To me Bostaph is a much better drummer....and way less ego. But Lombardo's fills sound cleaner....
 

Otto

Platinum Member
I say don't worry too much about the speed, think about clean hits vs fast and sloppy, some drummers are able to practice fast parts at a very slow speed then progressively speed them up until the desired speed is reached....(Actually, most drummers will be able to do that just fine). I find that way harder than playing the parts at the right speed. Yes, at first I make a few mistakes and the part is not clean but after a few attempts, I usually am able to nail the part and move on., It is also a lot different when you are just practicing the part alone than when you are playing a song and the part comes in at some point because a lot of people tend to anticipate and miss the correct timing even though they are capable of playing the part alone just fine... Regardless of which drummer you are, I say focus on clarity/cleanliness and the speed is secondary.
Dave Lombardo's fills (Slayer) sound good not because he is fast but because he is a precise drummer. his fills are not particularly fast but they serve the songs well, Paul Bostaph's fills are faster (Took Lombardo's place) not sure if you are familiar with Slayer's history (check out Ghost of war for an example of Lombardo's fills, and Dittohead for an example of Bostaph's fills). To me Bostaph is a much better drummer....and way less ego. But Lombardo's fills sound cleaner....
Isn't that the point though?...even seeking speed will give you effects you didn't intend...like an efficiency that makes slow individual strikes distinct and clean without sounding too sticcato.

I don't think time is wasted...even in more obscure endeavours...I have had ideas spring from an old tv theme song that i would never have found if I was not couch potato-ed at the time...we never know what builds the perfect moment until it is flashing at us from its receding point in the past.
 

doggyd69b

Drum Expert
Isn't that the point though?...even seeking speed will give you effects you didn't intend...like an efficiency that makes slow individual strikes distinct and clean without sounding too sticcato.

I don't think time is wasted...even in more obscure endeavours...I have had ideas spring from an old tv theme song that i would never have found if I was not couch potato-ed at the time...we never know what builds the perfect moment until it is flashing at us from its receding point in the past.
Back to my original reply if you learn by practicing slow and speeding up, then do that...
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
If I knew exactly when it was time for me to buy the farm, I could give you a really precise answer on the timeframe question.
 

Rock Salad

Junior Member
It's good to have goals. Some of us are content wandering aimlessly and won't improve as much as we could if we don't commit to some goals.
I probably ought to give myself some deadlines
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
Time frames are putting unnecessary pressure on yourself, learning takes as long as it takes. You can only say you've fully learnt something when it becomes subconscious.

I don't get the obsession with speed, it's the most boring one trick pony going. Keep it in the bag by all means for the end of gig madness. I've gone down the play as fast as you can cul-de-sac, glad I got that out of my system young. As for clean hits get good technique and get into recording, that shows your flaws in the cold hard light of day! Plus pad work.

Taste is the goal I strive for and the most overlooked lesson in the YouTube bedroom warrior times we live in. Same applies to gospel chops aka DYNAMICS ARE FOR PUSSIES PLAYING.

The kind of playing I strive to achieve is the least sellable and least glamorous drumming going. Try getting a young kid on board saying that your goal on stage should be to be the least noticed person on it but still be responsible for holding everything together and nobody watching appreciates you for it!
 

Cmdr. Ross

Silver Member
(the world of hand technique instruction is littered with mouthy idiots).

But who else to aspire to be like? YouTube is just a click away *shrug*
I follow Rob Brown and he took a solid year to work on just the hands. For me, it was a very well received year & the lessons helped me a lot.

Two drummers have inspired me to work on certain things: Stan Lynch formerly of Tom Petty & the Heartbreakers & Neil Peart of Rush.
Stan was the first rock drummer I saw play traditional grip. Something I hadn't thought possible as an early teen.
Neil helped me with composition and accuracy. Something my teenage, heavy metal playing ass needed more than anything. :LOL:
 

doggyd69b

Drum Expert
It's good to have goals. Some of us are content wandering aimlessly and won't improve as much as we could if we don't commit to some goals.
I probably ought to give myself some deadlines.
let's say you did that (gave yourself some deadlines) now you met said deadlines... now what? If you don't have a goal in mind I say it's pointless to try to develop a specific skill. For example, I personally want to increase my double bass speed so I can play like David Diepold, the hands part I can do no problem but the bass is just ridiculously fast for me at this time. I can do maybe 70 percent speed of his speed. So, that is My goal to increase my speed to be able to play that. Do you have any goal set or you just want to get fast? I may need to learn a different technique I can get BabyMetal's Road of resistance fast with swivel but still a ways to go to Diepold's speeds...
 
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