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Fill Of The Week #23

It’s time to smack that stack with fill of the week #23. Let’s get to stack smackin’.

Did you spot the 5 note grouping at work during fill of the week #23? We last saw 5 note groupings in fill of the week #14 when we were going over the bar line with them. This time, however, we’ll stay within the bar lines to create a usable stack smackin’ fill.

Learn The Fill

Let’s start of by looking at the 5 note grouping we’ll be using for this fill.

basic five note grouping
Five Notes Of Fun

Our five note group is 1 note on the bass drum and then four notes with the hands starting with the right hand. Practice playing this 5 note grouping smoothly. Repeat it over and over again with no gaps between the groupings.

If we string three groups of five notes together we get 15 notes. That fits nicely into a bar of 16th notes like this:

Three five note groupings
3 x 5 = I don’t have enough fingers to count that!

To end the fill in a nice smooth manner, we need to add one more 16th note. I opted for an additional left hand on the snare. This gives the right hand plenty of time to find a crash to hit on beat one. You could also try for an additional bass drum if you prefer.

full fill played on the snare.
5 + 5 + 6 = awesome fill!

Practice this fill between the snare and bass until you have it smooth. It’s easier to hear any unevenness playing it just between the bass and snare drum.

The final step is to move the right hand to the stack cymbal. If you don’t have a stack cymbal you can use the hi-hats, a splash, or a china instead. Here’s the full fill:

The full fill
The full orchestration

Taking It Further

Once you have the basic pattern happening you can orchestrate it around the kit anyway you like. I liked the idea of splitting the hands between a cymbal and the snare. Here’s some more ideas in that vein.

Change it up!

The first of our variations adds a tom-tom into the five note groupings and changes the final note to another bass drum.

The 2nd variation is a softer version of the original fill; playing the fill between the bass, hi-hat and rim click instead.

The final variation moves the right hand to the tom-toms and has the left hand play the hi-hat – except for the last left on the snare drum. Again the final note is played on the bass drum.

There are many other ways you can move this five note grouping around the kit. Experiment and come up with ideas you like the sound of.

I hope you’ve enjoyed fill of the week #23. For drum lessons in Singapore, send us a message on the contact us page and we’ll arrange a free trial lesson with you.