What is wrong with my Funky Drummer groove?

s1212z

Drum Expert
Hip-Hop owes a huge debt of gratitude (and some overdue royalties) to Mr. Stubblefield, Mr. Coleman, and the lovely Ms. Lyn Collins.
So many samples of their work out there that many just don't recognize. Ms. Collins being the one very few actually know.
Who recognizes this beat (and lyric)?
According to Wiki, Prince paid his medical bills before Clyde passed away along with other fund raising.
 

Xstr8edgtnrdrmrX

Platinum Member
I wonder if your hi hat foot is moving just a bit late on the last open before beat 4, and that is throwing off the subdivisional flow to the next beat one? That happened to me when I tried to play the same beat after hearing yours. I wanted to "feel it out".

It was like a balance thign in my core because of how the right and left foot were interacting....
 

Yamaha Rider

Silver Member
Hip-Hop owes a huge debt of gratitude (and some overdue royalties) to Mr. Stubblefield, Mr. Coleman, and the lovely Ms. Lyn Collins.
So many samples of their work out there that many just don't recognize. Ms. Collins being the one very few actually know.
Who recognizes this beat (and lyric)?
One of my fave dance records ❤
 

s1212z

Drum Expert
I tried this groove over the weekend, first time playing in a while. The 9 min version is a nice workout! I try to keep the 16ths light as possible, it’s how I hear it. I realize Clyde had a unique left hand approach and how he got his sound, I find it hard emulate


Jojo’s take


The man himself. He wasn’t comfortable on this set but great to hear him talk

 

s1212z

Drum Expert
I've seen videos of him playing trad in his early years then matched later on. So if he was switching back and forth, in his early years, IDK. I suspect he may be traditional in Funky Drummer, just by the sound of the ruffs, accents and the lightness in certain areas. My trad is garbage so I have to play it matched so the conveniences of trad is lost....it's a nice challenge and fun too. Especially those fast/short ruffs are easier and more relaxed in trad but I finding to put in finger pressure or adjust a choke in the grip for the ruff...but then you have to switch it to emulate the other ghost and accent to pop which are definitely more relaxed to my ear. His nuance touch and details are so brilliant to the groove along with the super light 16ths.



A good look at the matches left hand:

 
Last edited:

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
I'll tell you what I hear and how I play it faster hat tempo than yours. In highly technical terms ROFL. Just kidding I see my hands following the groove in groups of 7 then 6. First grouping on Dat, dat, dat , dat, dat, dat, dat, then flam the snare with hat on four and flam snare on 7. Then keep going with dat, dat, dat, dat/dum flam on 4, dat, dat/dum-snare on 6. Works for me-dat, dat, dat, dat/dum, dat, dat, dat/dum, dat, dat, dat, dat/dum, dat, dat/dum. I just keep a fast tempo on my dat, dats LOL. But Clyde likes to mix it up and adds drags and different accents too-so it's not always that constant pattern but mostly-so I go by feel for those drags. He's an awesome drummer.
 
Last edited:

oldskoolsoul

Silver Member
..Caught this the other day...hurts to watch. I don't know what this is but it ain't the groove..

But he grooves like hell or not..?

Then who cares if he is playing the exact notes or just something that pops up in his mind at that moment..?

To groove, playing music, to swing, thats what the whole thing is about, not about playing notes or copying exactly what he played a few decades ago..

Check how Daru Jones plays this..

 

s1212z

Drum Expert
But he grooves like hell or not..?

Then who cares if he is playing the exact notes or just something that pops up in his mind at that moment..?

To groove, playing music, to swing, thats what the whole thing is about, not about playing notes or copying exactly what he played a few decades ago..

Check how Daru Jones plays this..

It's not a question whether it grooves or not...nothing wrong with interpretation either, Clyde grooves all the time. However it's arguably the most important grooves of the 20th century just for Funky Drummer alone....not to mention sample derivatives sparking a genre, just a masterpiece.

Found this gem, he honestly doesn't remember!

 

Supernoodle

Senior Member
Caught this the other day...hurts to watch. I don't know what this is but it ain't the groove and pretty sure it wasn't this loud either. Let's assume Clyde couldn't play it like he did in 1970.
Didn't he come to hate his own creation? Can't remember where I heard him say it... Problem is the first half of it became the standard beginner beat, but with no dynamics and accents, all beats loud on the snare, which sounds awful.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
I started noodling to this a couple of days ago to see if what I remembered playing and described on here was the same-and heck no. I don't play it fast, nor flams, not consistent -it's all over the place. I think I was thinking of another JB song ROFL. I don't think there is any hard and fast way to play it-you follow James and try to hit his accents.
 
Last edited:

s1212z

Drum Expert
Hard to say, been watching all the videos and sounded like he was genuinely humbled on the scope of samples but the money lose comes up and sure that doesn't feel good. I think he may have got his cancer diagnosis near this time and probably not at his peak form when with JB. Every early video, he was playing traditional grip and like many players they may have hand issues later on. Otherwise that video series is really great with Jabo, glad they got some recognition they deserved.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member

Is this funkier? I’m hitting the 2 and 4 harder.
That's it-I think it sounds "funky" cause the nature of recording-move closer. If you use an iPhone or single mic Zoom placement completely changes sound of drums. It's just missing the music and being able to follow accents of song. Once I add the song in my mind it falls nto place it sounds to me. Clyde shifts things a bit during the song. That or we both have screwed it up ROFL.
 

Push pull stroke

Platinum Member
That's it-I think it sounds "funky" cause the nature of recording-move closer. If you use an iPhone or single mic Zoom placement completely changes sound of drums. It's just missing the music and being able to follow accents of song. Once I add the song in my mind it falls nto place it sounds to me. Clyde shifts things a bit during the song. That or we both have screwed it up ROFL.

Yeah, I do think it’s a lot easier to get into the feel if you’ve got the other parts playing along.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Yep I didn't really add open hats till middle (and I added the drags early) and I also did like the video posted of Daru Jones-adding pauses towards middle (that in itself is an accent). I think I got into the groove better than last minute. It really all sounds good to me no matter the video and how you play it. I agree with OldSkool and just find the groove and play like you like-that's what Clyde said he did.
 
Top