In this lesson, you will learn the basics of rock drumming. Learning how to play rock on the drums will help to develop your basic skills around the drum set. Rock drumming is something most drummers play whether they know it or not. So how do you play rock on the drums then? If you can count to four, you can play a basic rock beat. Most rock patterns are in 4/4, or common time; meaning there are 4 quarter notes per measure. This is called common time because it is the most popular time signature played in mainstream rock, jazz, Latin, and other styles of music. Follow along with me to try and grasp these basic rock beats. Remember to count out loud when you play to make sure you are playing everything correctly!
The beat below is one of the most basic beats on the drum set. This is probably the first drum beat every beginner learns, since you are using your three main limbs; right hand, left hand, and right foot. It is the best way to start developing your independence and control around the drum set. This beat is best played counting 8th notes: 1 & 2 & 3 & 4 &. Play the snare on 2 and 4, and the bass drum on 1 and 3. Keep the hi hat driving the song by playing 8th notes with your right hand. Here is how this basic beat looks like:
Now lets spice this basic 4/4 beat up to give it some more groove. Lets first start by changing up the bass drum pattern. The best way to develop new beats is by mastering simple ones, and slowly start changing them up. So once you have the basic beat covered, you can start changing the bass drum up a bit. Try adding twice as many kicks to the beat. This would look like this: (remember to count!)
This is another example of a common rock beat heard in many songs. Now following the same method as we did before, lets change this beat up a bit. This time, lets add some extra snare hits. This groove is now full with 8th note hits either on the snare or bass drum. Try this pattern:
With this method, try creating your own groove. If you are having troubles making unique grooves on the drum set, you should try writing them out first! Start out with 8th notes, and then move up to 16th notes. There are literally thousands of different patterns you can create with this method, so you have a lot you can work on. These are all basic rock patterns used in everyday modern rock, even though they may not sound very "rocky" yet. Playing them in their proper speed and place will give you the results you are looking for! Good Luck!
When you are done, check out my review of Jared's Rock Drumming System for more information on how you can improve your Rock Drumming abilities using his unique multi-angle training system.
Do you want to learn drums? Visit LearningDrums.com for more information.