Category : Lessons

Paid Members HD video lessons. We explore dynamics, phrasing, chops, even/odd meter, PDF charts, soundtrack music, play-along mp3s, and much more. This provides today’s musician with every angle on every subject. Rock, Funk, Latin, Reggae, Samba, Calypso, Disco, Punk, Metal, R&B, Fusion, Jazz, and all other genres are enhanced throughout.

Duple Chant in 9 #2

Weights refers to the specific turning points inside chants. Weights can also be looked at as accents or the overall “skeleton” as I like to call it. Here, the chant is subdivided in 9 by groups of 2/3/3/1 or 2/3/4. The chant neatly fits into the hat and bell-shifting pattern. The weights 2/3/3/1 or 2/3/4 completes the full cycle. The chant begins with a pedaled hat at the top alternating with the bell of the ride cymbal. The top of the chant comes around every two times. Notice how the characteristics change dramatically at only three tempos of 120, 200 and 250 BPM.

Duple Chant in 5 #5

The chant begins with a pedaled hat and kick. The hat and ride keep the pulse on opposite ends. The first snare lands on the “a” of beat 2. Once that is established, everything takes shape. Tempo changes dramatically shift the feel of this particular chant. The slower the tempo results in a funkier feel. The faster tempo results in a robotic feel. It takes two measures to get back to the top of the chant. While improvising, as with all chants, it’s always best to keep the chant going mentally. Physically, by keeping the pedaled hat constant, it’s almost impossible to lose place as long as the ride cymbal is always opposite the hat. Again, Duple Chant in 5 #5 may sound simple, however strong focus and relaxation can help pull this off seamlessly.

Cascara 1 & 2

Two patterns are used in traditional and contemporary Afro-Cuban music deriving from sacred and secular folkloric traditions. The timbalero (solo percussionist) plays these patterns. Over time, this adapted to the full drum kit. The name “Cascara” refers to these patterns being played on the shell of timbales or the rim of the floor tom. Today, Cascara refers to the rhythm itself. The thing to pay attention to as with Son and Rumba Clave are the distinct differences with how the Cascara fits with each Clave. For example, Son Clave pivots on the “and” of 2. Rumba Clave pivots on the “a” of 2. Playing this very slowly will give you the distinct difference. Notice how the Clave is played with the side stick on the snare rim and the Cascara is played on the cowbell, hi hat or ride cymbal. The kick drum is the same for Cascara 1 & 2. It fits between the Clave beats creating a very funky vibe.

Son & Rumba Clave

Legendary Cuban Drummer, Ignacio Berroa, said “Clave is a pattern and a feel around which all the parts of the music has to fit. It’s like a guide that will tell you how to play this music.” There are 2 claves. Son clave and Rumba clave. With Son clave the third beat falls on beat 4. With Rumba clave the third beat falls on the and of beat 4. You can play each clave 3, 2 or 2, 3 meaning the first three beats in the first measure and the last two in the second measure or vice versa. When accompanying music, the melody tells you which type of clave to play. The opening performance switches between Son and Rumba 2,3 claves. The lesson demonstrates Son and Rumba clave at 80, 120 and 140BPM.