Books and DVD’S guaranteed to improve technique

If you have ever felt bored or are wondering what to work on next when sitting at the kit, I have just the info for you. These books and DVD’s I have listed are all full of new techniques and exercises to take you to the next level. I have been through these books/dvd’s myself and have found much gain from all of them and I will point out what I feel the strong points in each one is. In no particular order or importance, lets begin. (I will place links to ebay for these in the bottom of the post for easy access)

1. Future Sounds by David Garibaldi (Tower of Power)

Future sounds is a phenomenal straight up funk primer book. The big word here is permutation! It teaches you all the nuances of playing very creative right hand ostinatos and building coordination behind them. From this book you will go through extensive work with ghost notes, different dynamics in each hand (especially focused on the snare drum hand) different sounds to get from surfaces you strike on the drum and sticks, and over all a dive into approaching most funk rhythms/accents through different sticking patterns and hand placement.

2. Secret Weapons for the Modern Drummer by Jojo Mayer (Nerve)

This DVD takes any hand technique to the next level. If you have ever wanted to improve your hand technique, this DVD will push your hands to a new limit. It goes into extensive detail on the Moeller stroke, Jojo Mayers interpretation of the push/pull technique, finger technique, proper stroke etiquette, explanation of german, french, traditional, and matched grips, and tons of exercises for each and every technique are both displayed and given to you in PDF format. This DVD offers something for all skill levels as well. It starts with the basics and gradually works into more difficult techniques. The best thing about this DVD is that it actually has great explanations of all the aforementioned techniques as well as demonstrations in both slow motion and real time. There is something to be gained from any skill level with this DVD.

3. Groove Alchemy by Stanton Moore (Galactic)

If you have ever wondered, “why am I not grooving, or I just can’t put my touch on this groove” this is the book/dvd for you. It first takes you through the background of the older players who set most of the standard rhythms and ideas you hear from solid players today. You learn grooves from classics like James Brown, Led Zeppelin, The Meters, Bernard Purdie and why they were influential and increases both your history and grammar musically in phrasing these grooves and creating your own ideas. The book comes with an mp3 disc that has all the examples recorded and played by Stanton himself. What you really notice from such a solid player and what really comes to light in this book is just how much impact playing on top/middle/or behind the beat really has. It is talked about frequently and displayed very well in the recorded examples and helps you realize just how to place phrases on top or behind the beat through listening and playing. The biggest thing I noticed upon completion of this book was a much more relaxed approach to being flexible playing time without getting in the way and a much more solid shuffle. It sounds confusing, but if you go through the book it makes tons of sense.

4. Linear Drumming by Mike Johnston (Simon Says, Mikes Lessons)

Yes, this is where you are going to build tons of chop independence and creative freedom around the kit. This book is full of nothing but linear patterns and breaks down how to approach learning each one. After learning only a few, you will already notice yourself becoming way more creative around the kit with both grooves and those “killer fills” you have been trying to find. With this book, I realized that most the stuff that I was completely dumbfounded by really wasn’t that hard. It really is just a ton of linear patterns and getting comfortable voicing them differently around the kit. A lesson in ear training and focus!

5. A Student’s Guide to the Drumset by Dr. G.W. Sandy Schaefer

This book is coordination to the extreme! It is a book that will never stop being used. To this day I still pull this book out to work with new hand techniques, ostinatos, and ideas. It takes you through the basic coordination for nearly every style of music including Rock, Latin, Jazz, Afro Cuban, Mambo, Bossa Nova, Linear, and even gives you a few solo ideas at the end. This should definitely be the first book anyone that is serious about learning drumset buys and for a good reason, it spans all skill levels including beginner/advanced. You can always pull this book out and apply new methods to the exercises placed in this book which almost makes it a “never ending book” so to speak. It never ends and that is why I love it! If interested e-mail Sandy Schaefer through his work e-mail at Chadron State College to get a copy by clicking here. 

I couldn’t find a picture of the cover for this book so I took some of mine to show you how much it gets used. No cover or back!


6. Stick Control by George Lawrence Stone

It’s as simple as the title. You want more control with your hands, you need to buy this book. Tons of exercises and sticking patterns that will turn you into a monster when applied to the drumkit. Simple, yet very/very/very/very/very important. Did I mention that this book is important? Plus it’s dirt cheap, $3.00 ON HALF.EBAY.COM!!!!!!

CLICK THE LINKS BELOW TO FIND THESE BOOKS/DVDS FOR CHEAP

FUTURE SOUNDS

SECRET WEAPONS FOR THE MODERN DRUMMER

GROOVE ALCHEMY

LINEAR DRUMMING

A STUDENTS GUIDE TO THE DRUMSET

STICK CONTROL

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