Rudiment Breakdown (Slow-Fast-Slow)
Take a Lesson from Dr. John Wooton
RUDIMENT APPLICATION EXERCISE
* NOTE FROM MARK WESSELS (author of exercises, performing playalong files):
In order to play the multiple bounce roll with a high quality of sound, speed is not a determining factor. Each of the following exercises is written within a tempo marking that is appropriate to produce the best quality of sound for a buzz roll (for most applications).
As you work through each exercise, you’ll notice that the “sweet spot” for hand speed is roughly in the middle of the tempo range. However, practicing throughout the range of tempi will give you the ability to produce the best sounding roll in a variety of situations. Drum size, musical style, head type, head tension, dynamic level, stick selection and performance space will all be determining factors in which roll subdivision will sound best!
RECOMMENDED APPROACH FOR BEGINNING/INTERMEDIATE PLAYERS:
The application of this rudiment is different from all the others in that you’re not starting slow and gradually working on faster speeds. Instead, start by learning to play the 16th based roll subdivision in a medium tempo (exercise #4), then go back to #1 (which is essentially the same duple subdivision, but half the speed). Next, work on the triplet subdivisions (#2 and #5).
The most difficult subdivision to master is the Quintuplet in exercise #3. This subdivision is not commonly found in band or orchestra music, but will produce the best sounding rolls because of the lack of “lead hand” pulsations! You may also wish to experiment with Septuplet subdivisions for slow tempos (overlapping exercise #1 and #2: m.m.=60–85). As always, use your ears to determine the best hand speed for your multiple bounce rolls.Good Luck! – m.w.
- Dr. John Wooton is the director of percussion studies at The University of Southern Mississippi. He is well versed in many percussion instruments but has specialized in rudimental snare drum, drum set, marimba, vibraphone and steel pans. Dr. Wooton directs the Percussion Ensemble, Steel Pan Orchestra, Graduate Percussion Ensemble and the Samba Band. He also performs regularly on steel pans as a soloist or with his band, KAISO!, and plays vibes for the USM Jazz Quintet.
THE DRUMMER’S RUDIMENTAL REFERENCE BOOK
This book is packed full of lessons and exercises. Neatly organized into 41 different sections, this book covers rudiments, one-handed exercises, stick control, timing, relaxation, odd-groupings, back sticking, & tenor drumming. A must for the private instructor and band director!
DR. THROWDOWN’S RUDIMENTAL REMEDIES
A fantastic compilation of rudimental exercises written and collected throughout the years by Dr. John Wooton. Included is an accompanying DVD of Dr. Wooton performing many of the exercises and etudes. An enormous amount of downloadable play-along tracks are included on the DVD as well as insightful philosophies from Dr. Throwdown, himself! You can find out more information on Dr. Wooton’s books on his Web site:WWW.JOHNWOOTON.COM