How Others Have Combined The ‘Options’ (from page 82-84)
In this section we’ll look at how at least six different drummers have (or would) combine the seven options in a unique manner using the same sticking. We’ll use the paradiddlediddle sticking as a starting point:
And we will substitute the last right for a bass drum:
Elvin Jones: Orchestration and Permutation
Elvin was renowned for his ability to improvise with rolling triplet ideas. In 2009 I was honoured to be on the same clinic bill at Music Live at Birmingham N.E.C as Jerry Brown, Robin Guy and many other incredible drummers, including über-drummer Neal Wilkinson. A question was asked in his clinic regarding the use of rudiments in playing and Neal used this example to demonstrate. Using the simple paradiddlediddle substitution idea from above he played this Elvin style jazz time pattern – you should pedal 2 and 4 on the hi hats too, but I have left it out for clarity:
I played around with this idea at home and permutated it to create the Elvin Jones triplet feel. This involved starting on each possible note. The first example gives you a standard jazz ride cymbal pattern, the others are just permutation ideas. Watch out for the left lead ideas and remember to pedal 2 and 4 on the hi hats:
Of course, you could also orchestrate the hands around the kit to further layer the sound and tone– here is a simple right hand orchestration idea:
And here are two examples of the ideas in context of jazz time, one slow, one fast:
Mitch Mitchell: Dynamics and Orchestration
I had read so often of Mitch’s Elvin influence and, of course, I could hear the swing elements in his playing but it wasn’t until Neal played the above idea that I realised there were some directly influenced ideas.
If we take out RLRRLF and purely play around with sound accent ideas and then orchestrate the accents around the kit, we have some perfect Mitch Mitchell fills:
MM EX2 and 3
Clearly you could permutate and play them through differing subdivisions (Mitch was well know for mixing subdivisions in fills) to create even more ideas.
Here are the examples played in a groove and fill context:
David Garibaldi: Dynamics, Subdivision 1&2, Permutation, Orchestration
As our RLRRLF pattern is linear, I instantly tried to figure out how Tower Of Power supremo drummer David Garibaldi may have implemented the pattern. My initial idea consisted simply of some orchestration and the addition of a RLRL sticking at the end to create a bar of sixteenth notes:
Whilst this works fine, I knew there had to be more to this!
The first step was to drop one of the two rights in the sequence to create a five note sequence.
Then I permutated the sticking to begin on a bass drum (we usually start grooves on a bass drum, right?!)
Finally I added the right hand note back in but at double the subdivision it was before:
DG EX2, 3 and 4
Here is the final groove (with an added bass drum at the end to create sixteen notes) with orchestration and dynamic (to create a back beat):
DG EX 5
Tony Williams ‘Blushda’: Subdivisions 1&2 and Orchestration
Tony Williams famous lick – the blushda – can be developed and expanded on using this pattern. Here is the basic sticking followed by the adaptation of the first two strokes into a flam:
TW EX1 and 2
Here it is phrased in 8th note triplets. It also sounds great phrased in 3 16th notes too.
And here’s the fill played in the context of a groove and fill example:
Vinnie Colaiuta/Steve Gadd/Gospel Chops: Subdivisions 1&2, Orchestration, Dynamics and Embellishment
Here’s a linear idea reminiscent of the likes of Vinnie and Gadd and has all the hallmarks of the note heavy Gospel Chops drummers such as Nissan Stewart and Aaron Spears. Embellish this pattern with a stepped hi hat at the end of the phrase. Be sure to fit it in between the bass drum and the first right hand instead of as an sixteenth note. You need to play the stepped hi hat as a short staccato sound:
Orchestrated this way you can create a fast sixteenth note triplet phrase with a backbeat on 2 and 4. The cool part of this is the three hi hat notes, the first of which is pedaled then played with the hands:
Jason Bowld: Orchestration, Subdivisions 1&2, Dynamics, Embellishment
My good friend Jason is renowned for his inventiveness and creativity. I put myself in his shoes for this pattern. Here’s the simplified orchestration:
Now double the right hand on the floor tom:
add in the bass drum:
and finally embellish with the left foot bridged between the hi hat and slave double bass drum pedal:
The point here is that despite the sticking remaining the same, it’s how the drummer combined the options to make themselves sound unique that stands out. Whilst it’s great to work through these examples, the challenge and fun lies in combining the ‘options’ to create your own unique voice – What will YOU come up with?