This is another performance featuring on the spot creative music with Steve Coleman and special guests. This is a dual cam raw edit. As part of the residency, we performed onstage in venues making this performance captured at Cafe Logan a bit more intimate for the audience. As the drummer, I have to always listen to everything happening. This is a humbling gig to have working with Steve Coleman mostly because the music never becomes relaxing. Anything can happen at anytime. A cue could be thrown inside the most odd place. Rhythmically speaking, it is not enough to look at this as a challenge. You must be alert on all fronts and ready to play against all the music you hear. This performance is a wonderful opportunity to share my experience with this group of musicians.
One of my top warm ups. I developed this during my Reggae Years in my youth. One afternoon I was doing a sound check with some musicians performing reggae music and I came up with this chant. Today I use this chant as one of my warm ups during sound checks. The basic chant enforces an intense solid pocket with the twist of triple feel snare ghost notes not written in the chart. This mimics the sound of slap back delay on hi hat and snare when ghost notes are played on the snare. Or it can be played exactly as written on the chart without ghost notes for independence.
This is a full performance at Reva & David Logan Center for the Arts at University of Chicago featuring alto saxophonist Steve Coleman, myself on drums and the band. The performance was (and currently is) part of a four week residency which also includes workshops and open rehearsals. Steve’s music is full of counter crossing rhythms, time signatures, key changes, melodic references, multi-layered chords, phrases, and cues. Along with all those components comes his unique style and vision behind the music approaching a rhythmic sense unparalleled and completely original. Notice constant usage of multiple drum chants using long and short beats.
We begin this chant at a relaxed tempo of 84 BPM. You can look at this like a string of 16th notes for the length of two measures. Each note is assigned to a specific place on the kit. Something is going on every beat and every half beat. Ghost snare notes are written into this chant. This is a great chant exercise for independence. This is also a great chant for dynamic control when played at 120 BPM or higher at a low volume of a whisper which forces you to focus on stick control, body position, and relaxing your wrists.