The key to swing drumming

Tornado

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Early on, I watched Ed Soph do an entire set with brushes from maybe 15 feet away, but I was so green that it all shot right over my head. I was impressed, but I didn't know how to process it.

Ha, same with me. And then even more later on. Ed's brush playing is masterful of course, but Ralph's really spoke to me. It was just so powerful.
 

CAMDRUMS

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It’s an interesting video and I have practiced his “throw up” exercise for a few days now, though I’m not sure I feel much improvement to my swing just yet. Maybe it was pretty decent to begin with :). Anyhow, at one point he shows this chart and in referring to the first three lines, talks about a bass player being able to play the four beats of the measure as either quarters, eighths, or sixteenths. He then talks about drummers being able to do the same thing on the ride cymbal, but what he really means, and what he is really getting at with the throw up exercise, is we are moving our ride stroke in the feel of quarters, similar to how an upright bassist plays quarters with a circular motion, rather than shorter movements. Obviously we can’t get a cymbal to sound out for just a single eighth note unless we are then muting it for an eighth rest, as a bassist can do. So he seems to say that quarter notes that swing well do so because of the movement of our ride stroke. Trying to play quarters with less of a stroke sounds choppy. But then again, it doesn’t feel natural to me to even try playing like that. So for me, yes, the throw up exercise and moving my arm in the feel of quarter notes makes sense. Back to practicing it!
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Houndog

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It’s an interesting video and I have practiced his “throw up” exercise for a few days now, though I’m not sure I feel much improvement to my swing just yet. Maybe it was pretty decent to begin with :). Anyhow, at one point he shows this chart and in referring to the first three lines, talks about a bass player being able to play the four beats of the measure as either quarters, eighths, or sixteenths. He then talks about drummers being able to do the same thing on the ride cymbal, but what he really means, and what he is really getting at with the throw up exercise, is we are moving our ride stroke in the feel of quarters, similar to how an upright bassist plays quarters with a circular motion, rather than shorter movements. Obviously we can’t get a cymbal to sound out for just a single eighth note unless we are then muting it for an eighth rest, as a bassist can do. So he seems to say that quarter notes that swing well do so because of the movement of our ride stroke. Trying to play quarters with less of a stroke sounds choppy. But then again, it doesn’t feel natural to me to even try playing like that. So for me, yes, the throw up exercise and moving my arm in the feel of quarter notes makes sense. Back to practicing it!
View attachment 537955
What stands out in my mind that makes his method “ work “ is that the tip of the stick doesn’t come to a stop …
 

Houndog

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The term throw up is a terrible way to describe what he does .
It’s more like throwing dice and letting stick come back effortlessly.
 

CAMDRUMS

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Okay after working on this some and then going and actually playing some music, I can definitely feel my quarter notes swing much better.
 


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