Things are about to get weird….
Groove of the week #58 starts out with a straight forward, rock solid, triplet groove but then at the end we add a touch of weirdness by playing 8th notes on the bass drum instead following the triplet subdivision. Back on Groove Of The Week #16 we did this the other way round; we played a triplet bass drum pattern against an 8th note hi-hat. You might want to check that out too.
Get The Groove
Groove of the week #58 is a bar pattern. The first bar is a common groove so we’re not going to look at that. Let’s focus on the second bar. Here it is:
The part of the bar we need to focus on is the last two beats. This is where we’re playing a little 3 over 2 polyrhythmic phrase. Let’s look at those last two beats in greater detail:
As you can see, the right hand is playing triplets – 1 puh let 2 puh let – and the right foot is playing 8th notes – 1 & 2 &. This is where the trouble starts. The left hand simply hits the snare on beat 2.
To learn the rhythm of this pattern, we can use this simple phrase: “Cold Cup Of Tea.”
Instead of counting “1 puh let 2 puh let” for the right hand, we can count “Cold Cup Tea Cold Cup Tea”.
Instead of counting “1 & 2 &” for the bass drum, we can count “Cold Of Cold Of”
Put the two together and you get: “Cold Cup Of Tea Cold Cup Of Tea”. It looks like this:
Practice playing this slowly until you can do it easily. I suggest using a metronome that can count the triplet subdivision. Focus on keeping “Cold Cup Tea” together with the metronome and slipping the “Of” smoothly between “Cup” and “Tea”. Once you can do that, you can play the full groove:
Take It Further
You may never get the chance to play this groove with a band. I can’t think of any songs with it in. However, getting comfortable with polyrhythmic phrases is always beneficial to your drumming and will help to expand your vocabulary in other ways.
Now that we can play this strange pattern between our hands and feet, lets create more grooves with it.
Our first variation just extends the polyrhythmic phrase over the whole of the second bar.
The second variation is a one bar pattern that plays the polyrhythmic phrase over beats 2 & 3 instead of beats 3 & 4.
The final variation applies the phrase to a regular 8th note rock beat. The right hand will have to switch from playing 8th notes on the hi-hat to triplets. You might find this one tricky.
I hope you’ve enjoyed groove of the week #58. If you’re in Singapore and you’d like a free trial drum lesson, send us a message on the contact us page.