The Drum Solo Discussion Thread

JDA

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turning into a Yoko thread..
"If Yoko can solo so can you"

that'll be....the err my err..final word on it ...today.
take it to heart.

~~~~~~~~~~~

"What happened Officer?"
"I caught him soloing at 45 mph."
"That's not a crime is it?"
"Did you hear him?"
 
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Rock Salad

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I'll grant that my soloing is self indulgence. Usually no one has asked for it.
Ours is a very straightforward rock & roll band, the audience is largely there to hear some boisterous joy from guys they can relate to. I go up first before each set and break out some brushes or mallets and try to add a small dose of contemplation. Or if I'm rowdy too, I'll just improvise the eighth note grid in 4 bar groups. In a minute or two the other guys finish pee ing and wander up to the stage and we play the songs.
Why not? It's not high art at our shows
 

piccupstix

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I'll grant that my soloing is self indulgence. Usually no one has asked for it.
Ours is a very straightforward rock & roll band, the audience is largely there to hear some boisterous joy from guys they can relate to. I go up first before each set and break out some brushes or mallets and try to add a small dose of contemplation. Or if I'm rowdy too, I'll just improvise the eighth note grid in 4 bar groups. In a minute or two the other guys finish pee ing and wander up to the stage and we play the songs.
Why not? It's not high art at our shows
Tossing the Rock Salad, so to speak. ;)
 

RIDDIM

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Just as some solos by other instruments are better than others. A lot of them have me wondering, what the hell was that?
I think it comes down to committing to make a musical statement vs. watch what I can do.
 

hsosdrum

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- Drums are not by their nature a melodic instrument
That depends entirely on how they're played. Any drummer who can't hear the melodies Max Roach plays when he solos just isn't paying enough attention. Drums can be melodic or they can be monotonously one-dimensional, it all depends on how they're being played.
- Drum solos are often quite different from other instrument solos - a guitar solo is taking place over the form of a song, with the rest of the band still playing. Drum solos are often "everyone leaves the stage and lets our drummer do their thing
Absolutely true, and it puts extra pressure on the drummer to: a) Play something original, b) Play something that will impress the audience and c) Play something the audience can relate to. Each of these brings with it a tremendous amount of latitude. Some drummers are good at this, some aren't.
- Most drummers are not good soloists, and think that playing the fastest stuff possible is how to make a good solo
Again, absolutely true. (And I'll add here that IMHO most guitarists, keyboard players and players of other "melody" instruments in pop, country and rock bands are not good soloists either — few have any original ideas; most simply 'color within the lines', stitching-together solos primarily from blues-based riffs that we've all heard thousands of times before.) But even a solo that's a pure "chops fest" (which many who've commented seem to think includes Buddy Rich's solos) can contain interesting music. It's just that the music goes by so fast that it's difficult to decipher in real-time.
If a guitar/horn solo meant the rest of the band leaving the stage, and the guitarist whipping through as many fast scales as they know, I wouldn't like those either.
For me it completely depends on what was being played and the emotion the player imbued into their playing. John Mclaughlin has played guitar solos that are blisteringly fast but carry so much emotion that they sometimes bring me to tears. Speed is merely one element of style, and by itself, speed does not indicate an absence of musicality. What speed does is place more demands on the listener, to be able to hear everything that's being played, not just the speed. In the case of Buddy Rich's solos, it took me years of listening to get to the point where I could decipher the music in a Buddy Rich solo the very first time I heard it. But then, I've always liked drum solos; you may not feel it's worth your time to bother getting to that point, and I totally understand that.
 

bpaluzzi

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In the case of Buddy Rich's solos, it took me years of listening to get to the point where I could decipher the music in a Buddy Rich solo the very first time I heard it. But then, I've always liked drum solos; you may not feel it's worth your time to bother getting to that point, and I totally understand that.
Or you can understand entirely what he's doing, and still not like it ;)


Note, I didn't say "you can never play a melody on drums". I said drums by their nature are not a melodic instrument. You can play "Call to the Post" on drums, too. They're still not a melodic instrument.
That clip was cute. I'm not compelled to ever watch it again, though.


Guys, it's honestly okay if a drummer doesn't like drum solos.

You don't have to try to convince me otherwise ;)
 

hsosdrum

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Or you can understand entirely what he's doing, and still not like it ;)




Note, I didn't say "you can never play a melody on drums". I said drums by their nature are not a melodic instrument. You can play "Call to the Post" on drums, too. They're still not a melodic instrument.
That clip was cute. I'm not compelled to ever watch it again, though.


Guys, it's honestly okay if a drummer doesn't like drum solos.

You don't have to try to convince me otherwise ;)
I'm not trying to change your mind, I'm trying to explain mine. :thumbup:
 

JDA

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I said drums by their nature are not
hey mom said I was a boy. I don't have to go along with that..
come on man get hip/
Guys, it's honestly okay if a drummer doesn't like drum solos.
Honestly what are you playing along with a keyboard guitar player and bass player.
There's no "other" drummer. You are playing solo
drums. there's no other drummer. you're solo.

about ready to state Drums are a solo instrument period
by their very nature

unless playing with another drummer.
Think it's impossible to not somewhat play solo even when accompanying.
There's no other drummers there; unless you're in with a percussionist

Which many most all drummer will tell you..
It "gets different" when a percussionist is present on stage with you.

That reminds me

percussionist on stage with you turns it/your playing/your thinking/ into a different thing/ you can't ignore/
with a percussionist on stage you're not playing solo anymore. someone's (finally) in your (space)
whereas guitar key sax trombone are outside your field. (of course you bring them in and out direct and shape etc)
Percussionist now you got somebody.
you can lean on and joke with; send secret messages; answer back and forth; .. actually;

Otherwise you're Solo.
ain't (until there is) another drummer in the room

I did it not very long ....I just remembered it was a Different lay of the land..
from being the "solo" (sole) drummer..
 
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Swissward Flamtacles

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Not everybody likes them, that's for sure. Here's a review of Kenny Wheeler's album "Double, Double You"

With Michael Brecker on tenor sax and a rhythm section that is powerful both individually and collectively, he has produced a provocative and often stimulating set of six original works. The horns' interplay on "Three for D'reen," Holland's phenomenal solo on "Blue for Lou" and all five men on the 14-minute "Foxy Trot" share the credit. This could have been a five-star set, but lapses into one of those inevitable closing drum solos. Why? Why? 4 stars.
The drummer is Jack DeJohnette, by the way. :D
 

JDA

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"we're always playing 'a' solo"..


our rides (parts) are 'a' solo..
a creation.

how when where aren't it?
drums are a solo instrument period
unless you've got that percussionist
person across from you.
then it's 2 people.

: )

So for any one to say as a drummer 'they don't like solos or "they can't" or "they won't" play solos, in some ways, doesn't make sense.
We're by nature of the instrument a constant solo construct.
We within the band usually work alone

remember the drum set eliminated 3 or 4 other's jobs
Now, always, we're solo.

: )
 
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multijd

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In the end soloing is part of playing the instrument. And in more than just jazz! Those claiming to know what the average person wants to hear have no clue. Why would so many rock drummers have featured solos if no one wanted to hear them? Also the melodic aspect of soloing really separates the “men from the boys”. This is probably why people claim to not be able to “play jazz” or they don’t understand it. It’s the melody! Learn to play piano and the melody of drums will make sense. Without it you’re just a guy who hangs out with musicians!!
 

paul

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Oh, it's definitely possible. But theory and practice are two very different things. I can count on one hand the number of solos that I feel are engaging in that manner.
Many drum solos don't meet my expectations, either, but criticism of individual performances isn't the same as dismissing the idea altogether. Maybe improve music education to improve solos overall would help.

Or maybe just remember that 49% of drummers are below average. :angel3:
 

paul

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In the end soloing is part of playing the instrument. And in more than just jazz! Those claiming to know what the average person wants to hear have no clue. Why would so many rock drummers have featured solos if no one wanted to hear them? Also the melodic aspect of soloing really separates the “men from the boys”. This is probably why people claim to not be able to “play jazz” or they don’t understand it. It’s the melody! Learn to play piano and the melody of drums will make sense. Without it you’re just a guy who hangs out with musicians!!
It hasn't come up here yet, as far as I can tell, but in my experience most audiences do indeed like drum solos. In my last few rock bands the drum solo has been a consistent way to help fill the tip jar.
 

bpaluzzi

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Many drum solos don't meet my expectations, either, but criticism of individual performances isn't the same as dismissing the idea altogether. Maybe improve music education to improve solos overall would help.
Agreed, but those are separate points of mine:
1 - most drum soloists aren't great
2 - the entire idea of drum solos is "look at me" wankery. :)

I feel the same about bass solos. There are some bassists who are fantastic soloists, and it's always enjoyable to hear them play. But most aren't, and in a standard rock gig, they're pointless eye rolls at best, and room-clearers at worst.
 


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