Who here has skipped/forgone learning doubles on the kick drum?

Thinkwriter

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I'm relatively new to drumming, but I've a pretty good idea what type of drummer I want to be. About the kick doubles thing, I've kind of decided it's not for me. But I wanted to hear your thoughts.

Just a bit of background:
I've seen countless videos explaining different techniques like slide or heel-toe, etc. I find them beyond my capabilities. Perhaps it has something to do with fact I'm usually barefoot or wearing flip-flops (I actually just practice at home). Or it might be my pedals idk. That being said, I've been working on my singles for over 2 years now (just one exercise though done over and over) and I think it's going good certainly can boast of some precision where I land those.

Apart from my struggles figuring it out, I've also convinced myself that 32nd notes are not terribly much "better" than 16th notes. I tried experimenting with grooves/fills that call for doubles, and I found replacing them with singles do the job just fine in most cases. As a beginner, I don't even hear the doubles, go figure!

TLDR: Doubles on kick are lame, but most likely I'm a moron. Thoughts?
 

JDA

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how I see it; It's a musical thing if you're not going to use them you're not going to use them. But in a pinch you may need them (or One...) to get you out of ( and in meter to) what your hands just did or are doing.

In essence that's what they are 'a pinch'. A pinch by the leg or foot however you like to look at it. They are a 'Pinch..
Now if you can imagine that you can do it. When and where ever you use it is another thing. It's just a pinch.
A tensing up of the bottom of the leg to execute. they're a pinch.
 

makinao

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I'm the reverse. I could do it when I was younger. But after a 20 year break, I couldn't. And after 5 years off and on (mostly off), I still can't. I think it's more a coordination problem than technique though. I can do it alone, but not together with other limbs.
 

Old PIT Guy

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... Doubles on kick are lame, but most likely I'm a moron. Thoughts?
One out of two ain't bad? I'm kidding!

Just because you're unable to play them now doesn't mean you won't be able to later on. If you set aside just a few minutes for them when you sit down now it'll add up to a whole lot of time you won't need to spend if and when you do decide you desire that ability.

It's like guys who said the hell with paradiddles or who play heavy music and think ghost notes have no application. Or guitarists who don't spend time with scales: It's a self-serving justification not to put in the work because you find something difficult. Before you know, that attitude carries over into a lot more things than a musical instrument.
 

frankmott

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Forgive my ignorance; are we talking one or two bass drums? What constitutes a "double?" When do two singles become a double?
 

Old PIT Guy

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Forgive my ignorance; are we talking one or two bass drums? What constitutes a "double?" When do two singles become a double?
I assume he's referring to two consecutive notes with one foot usually played as 16th or 32nd (straight or triplet) notes.
 

Thinkwriter

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Forgive my ignorance; are we talking one or two bass drums? What constitutes a "double?" When do two singles become a double?
Single pedal, two hits--the way I understand it is it's supposed to be like the moeller but with the foot
 

Thinkwriter

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how I see it; It's a musical thing if you're not going to use them you're not going to use them. But in a pinch you may need them (or One...) to get you out of ( and in meter to) what your hands just did or are doing.

In essence that's what they are 'a pinch'. A pinch by the leg or foot however you like to look at it. They are a 'Pinch..
Now if you can imagine that you can do it. When and where ever you use it is another thing. It's just a pinch.
A tensing up of the bottom of the leg to execute. they're a pinch.
That makes perfect sense. In a way, that's how it is with most techniques or ideas in your drum vocabulary. But that's a great descriptor of what those are--things that in a 'pinch' you can pull out to communicate your sound.

A crucial point I failed to mention though is that, like everyone, I'm working on other things I feel are more important, at least to me, like flams, push-pull, transcribing songs, etc. The point being, doubles are very low in my priority list in terms of things to be putting time into.
 

cworrick

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I've seen countless videos explaining different techniques like slide or heel-toe, etc. I find them beyond my capabilities. Perhaps it has something to do with fact I'm usually barefoot or wearing flip-flops (I actually just practice at home). Or it might be my pedals idk. That being said, I've been working on my singles for over 2 years now (just one exercise though done over and over) and I think it's going good certainly can boast of some precision where I land those.

I've also convinced myself that 32nd notes are not terribly much "better" than 16th notes. I tried experimenting with grooves/fills that call for doubles, and I found replacing them with singles do the job just fine in most cases. As a beginner, I don't even hear the doubles, go figure!
1. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH DOINg/WORKING SINGLES ON THE BD FOR A YEAR OR MORE. You are working on consistency and groove that others can play along with. That is the most important thing.

2. Try playing in socks instead of Bare feet. The bare foot will stick to the pedal. Socks will let you slide over the pedal for the nuance of doubles. This is what I do. I don't move the foot a lot just a little and it is easier with socks than with bare feet.

3. 32nd notes?!!! I agree with you. For 99.9999999% of music you will never need 32nd notes on a BD.
HOWEVER 16th notes are a different story. Even some slower songs use 16th notes on the bass drum - Toto's "Africa" is the first one that comes to mind. Not fast at all but that 16th pattern makes the groove. It is slow enough that depending on the technique it can be played as two quick singles, but feels better thinking double.

"Africa" could be a great starting point for doubles. I'm sure some other people can come up with some other songs that use a slow 16th pattern as well to start with.

The point is Doubles are a more advanced technique that singles. As someone just starting out (1-2 years) it is not uncommon to not feel comfortable doing them yet. Give your foot time to develop. There are A LOT of fun things to play when you get ready to start doubles. I'm hearing a lot of Latin/Samba, 1/2 samba BD patterns infiltrating into some pop music as well as solos over a samba ostinato pattern.

Videos are a great START to learning techniques to do different things, but remember that is a technique that works for the person doing the video. It may not work for everybody - this includes you. Try it. If it works, Great! If it doesn't, try something else. Everybody is different.

4. Don't Give Up. It will happen over time.
 

Thinkwriter

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there are places in some songs that cry out for a double shot. its part of the music
The only places I really feel they are crucial are when the meter/speed is intentionally ramped up or down, like it's an effect. Like when Benny Greb starts a fill with a 32nd note bass double and then goes sixteenths then 3/8 or something like that (not sure really, sorry).

Everywhere else they sound impressive, albeit superfluous imo.
 

Thinkwriter

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1. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH DOINg/WORKING SINGLES ON THE BD FOR A YEAR OR MORE. You are working on consistency and groove that others can play along with. That is the most important thing.

2. Try playing in socks instead of Bare feet. The bare foot will stick to the pedal. Socks will let you slide over the pedal for the nuance of doubles. This is what I do. I don't move the foot a lot just a little and it is easier with socks than with bare feet.

3. 32nd notes?!!! I agree with you. For 99.9999999% of music you will never need 32nd notes on a BD.
HOWEVER 16th notes are a different story. Even some slower songs use 16th notes on the bass drum - Toto's "Africa" is the first one that comes to mind. Not fast at all but that 16th pattern makes the groove. It is slow enough that depending on the technique it can be played as two quick singles, but feels better thinking double.

"Africa" could be a great starting point for doubles. I'm sure some other people can come up with some other songs that use a slow 16th pattern as well to start with.

The point is Doubles are a more advanced technique that singles. As someone just starting out (1-2 years) it is not uncommon to not feel comfortable doing them yet. Give your foot time to develop. There are A LOT of fun things to play when you get ready to start doubles. I'm hearing a lot of Latin/Samba, 1/2 samba BD patterns infiltrating into some pop music as well as solos over a samba ostinato pattern.

Videos are a great START to learning techniques to do different things, but remember that is a technique that works for the person doing the video. It may not work for everybody - this includes you. Try it. If it works, Great! If it doesn't, try something else. Everybody is different.

4. Don't Give Up. It will happen over time.
Thanks for taking the time to list all that, man! (or lady, in case you're a lady)

#2 -- Read this advice elsewhere. Thought it was about hygiene or something. Will try it.

#3 -- This one's interesting. I thought doubles are mainly for nailing those 32nd notes. The reason is, I can hit consecutive 16th note bass singles with a fair measure of accuracy. Maybe it's not that fast because the fastest tempos I've ever attempted are below 110 bpm, but I can do them without resorting to doubles.

This is new info to me is because all YT lessons I've come across that requires doubles are in 32nd notes. I believe most call these as gospel chops.

Side note: I think I'm forever turned off attempting Rosanna because of one video by YT's 8020 Drummer. All the cover drummers the host evaluated sounded faultless to my ears, but somehow he described nuances I can't even begin to discern.
 

Tama CW

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A lot of basic rock songs, Beatles included, play alternating singles and doubles on BD.....rather than just straight singles......in quarters, eighths, or whatever. That's how you basically learn to double "slowly." Gets a lot easier from there.
Boom.....boom-boom....Boom....boom boom. It probably takes 6-12 months to train those doubling muscles. Last year I tried doing that with opposite foot (switch hi hat and bass drum) as a way to make my left foot catch up. I would note than in the
70's I somehow learned to grind my beater into the kick. Didn't figure out until the 80's that there were better ways to do it. I think I found out from Modern Drummer Mag.....lol. Took me 6 months or so to unlearn that "burying the beater" habit.

For most of my recent practice sessions ALL I do on the kick is doubles for the main beat....with hi hat playing alternating singles......chick....boom-boom.....chick....boom-boom....for minutes at a time.
The hard part is doing everything else with your hands from triples to quads and rolls, and tom to tom fills while still keeping that bass drum and hi heat beat going without a hitch. For years my feet would follow my hands. And that gets ingrained.
Then much harder to break the bad habit years later. So this is my way of trying to break free of the last bit of remaining dependence. You can hide that dependence when just doing BD singles. A lot harder to hide it when
you do slower doubles.....or alternate singles and doubles. My advice is try it all. Don't let that dependence get too ingrained. While it's easier to double on lower friction-bearing pedals, you should be able to do it on almost any intermediate or pro pedal.
I couldn't double on a 60's Kent pedal....that was horrible. But any other pedal I've had including $10 MIJ ones, those would all work. For me, my heel is constantly floating 1/4" to 1" off the pedal. It really never "rests." Bad or good....that's what I do.
I tried all the other techniques and just went to what felt comfortable. Oddly, I tend to play heel down a lot on the hi hat. Though when I break out a double bass drum pedal - both heels come off. When playing double pedal I would often try to play left hand with
right foot.....and left foot with right hand.....to force "changes."

And there is no right way to double. I'd say find ANY way you feel comfortable with right now. Forget that sliding or heel/toe crap "mind confusion" stuff. Just flick the middle of the pedal (moderate leverage there) with the ball/toes of your foot. Flick it...harness the rebound. You'll get used to it. Hey, if 8 year Yoyoka can double and even triple to Led Zep's Good Times Bad Times.....us oldsters can surely learn to double decently. She's all toes and ball of foot .....barely reaching the pedal. Can't even get her heel on the thing. She's been playing for about 5 yrs here.

 
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Matched Gripper

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I'm relatively new to drumming, but I've a pretty good idea what type of drummer I want to be. About the kick doubles thing, I've kind of decided it's not for me. But I wanted to hear your thoughts.

Just a bit of background:
I've seen countless videos explaining different techniques like slide or heel-toe, etc. I find them beyond my capabilities. Perhaps it has something to do with fact I'm usually barefoot or wearing flip-flops (I actually just practice at home). Or it might be my pedals idk. That being said, I've been working on my singles for over 2 years now (just one exercise though done over and over) and I think it's going good certainly can boast of some precision where I land those.

Apart from my struggles figuring it out, I've also convinced myself that 32nd notes are not terribly much "better" than 16th notes. I tried experimenting with grooves/fills that call for doubles, and I found replacing them with singles do the job just fine in most cases. As a beginner, I don't even hear the doubles, go figure!

TLDR: Doubles on kick are lame, but most likely I'm a moron. Thoughts?
Bass pedal doubles are not hard to learn, and there is a lot of musical phrasing you can't play without them. The note value depends on the tempo of the music. Don't get hung up on that.
 

Squirrel Man

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From someone currently working on technique and seeing progress, my input here is I ignored the sliding heel/toe stuff because I needed conditioning first. So I worked on more basic stuff, the sliding stuff can come later but I think one needs to build a foundation of more basic technique first. Walk before you can run thing.

Doubles for me at least haven't been difficult. Transition timing is still a little tricky for me, the stupid fast speed stuff and endurance also. Double flams I can do but not in any practical application.
 

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When i was 17 i broke my leg in a pretty bad car accident just as i was starting drum set. I used that bass drum for my physical therapy for my foot. Good times bad times was my go to excercise for this. 2 years later i was in a fast paced ska punk band and doubles on the bass drum for our music was almost required. Its not impossible to learn how to do it but slow and steady will definitley help win the race. Another good excercise for your bass foot is the live version of my hero by the foo fighters. It doesnt have a lot of doubles, but the pulse of the song is played almost continuously on the bass drum which will help with building strength in that leg. If you use something like that for some endurance training then youll be able to pull off doubles without even thinking about it. It'll just happen. I've found that even if i go a while without playing there are certain things in my toolbox that still work due to muscle memory. Also RLKK over and over starting slow and working it up to faster tempos is a great way to train you foot for doubles.
 

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Old timer here... I think of a DOUBLE as two very rapid notes (32nd usually), typically played with one movement of the foot or a sliding heel/toe motion.

I play 16th note funk patterns with two bass strokes in a row but I do them with two discrete movements of the foot (moving the foot twice), either flat footed or heel up (I am working on both techniques).

Not sure if you would call these two 16th notes DOUBLES even tho there are two 16th bass notes in a row.

Clarification? What are we talking about?
 

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By all means, as a drummer you should never play two or more beats in close proximity to each other!!!
I'd get even snarkier but I get it that you're new to this and finding fast doubles on the bass drum pedal challenging. It'll come and you'll figure it out if you stay with it. Don't think of both notes being bombastic regular rock pattern notes but as quick almost pick-up notes with a "light foot."
 

toddbishop

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Sure, you can get a lot done musically with just single notes on the bass drum. But there are a lot harder things in drumming than this, so if you give up, it doesn't suggest you're going to have a lot of success with other stuff later on. So don't give up, keep working on it.

Turn off the videos though. This is an ordinary drumming ability that doesn't require any special technique. Trying to copy somebody's special technique makes it way harder than it needs to be.
 


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