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The fling

You are interested in learning the drums. You got yourself a pair of sticks. You have ruined a couple of furniture expressing that boiling desire to become a drummer, but there are only so much exercises you can dream up on your own. So, you go online and find some videos on the subject. But, hold the press, that’s not a few videos. That’s many thousand, maybe even a million. You thought there was one way of holding a pair of sticks, you were wrong! the catalog proposes a hundred. It’s like being in a storm of information and guidance. The concepts come at you fast and furious, the strange terms and weird words hit you in the face: flams, ratamacue, cheese-rolls, windmills. You try to protect yourself by putting them in some sort of order but you’re missing the first clue on where things go. Does poly-rhythms fit with double-bass? Is a paradiddle in the same folder as a fill?

Still, you are not the kind who gives up easily. You tighten your suspender and, bravely, you decide to focus on one thing. It’ll be the single-stroke-roll. That’s it! Single-stroke-rolls all the way! Your kitchen table gets carved with them. So does the living room table, or the TV table (Tables are the first victims of drummers). Singles everywhere. Each time you spot a flat surface, out come the sticks and bolom-bolom-bolom! you’re having a party.

But you still have that nagging feeling that you might be heading in the wrong direction. What if I’m doing it wrong? What if I’m not progressing? What if (oh no!) I’m hurting myself?! So, you grab the phone and decide to contact a teacher.

All right! Now we’re going somewhere. You got a guide for your travel, you’ve even invested in a drum set. You’re ready.

The first few lessons are a breath of fresh air. You get to learn something valuable and with a progression (at least that’s what happens if you study with me). More than that you get to understand WHY drummers play the way they play. Oh! what a relief!

And here comes the fling, the subject of this blog. Because even if you have the tutelage of a teacher, you haven’t forgotten the online videos. You’re still watching them, this time with a more informed eye because you can put a few concepts in the same category. The only problem is that sometimes, when you were supposed to practice the assignment your teacher gave you, you’ve practice instead what you just picked up on cool video. That is the fling. The fling will be practiced for awhile. One week. Maybe three. Soon replaced by another one, more fantastic, amazing. You’re a kid in a candy store and the world provides an infinite amount of candy.  Still, after a long while, you’ll experience the same nagging feeling that maybe you’re not accomplishing what you want because a fling is a bag of peanut when you’re looking for meat and potatoes.

I know exactly how to deal with that kind of thing. You’ll have to take lessons with me to discover how, but yes, I know a fling when I see it and I know exactly what to do with a student afflicted by this condition. Did I mention that I do individual Skype lessons with the same amount of fun and education as before these confined times?

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