You need double bass drum exercises to practice if you want to become proficient or exceptional using double bass in your music. Below you’ll get basic, intermediate, and advanced double bass drum exercises to help you improve your playing.
Two bass drums can be used in one way or another in most for forms of music; hard rock and heavy metal, fusion, punk, and jazz to name a few. Alternatively, two pedals can be used on a single bass drum. The jazz drummer, Louie Bellson, was among the first people to make double bass drumming popular starting in the 195’s. Louie came up with this concept while still in high school.
Jazz artists such as Ed Shaughnessy and Ray McKinley were some of the first drummers to use the double bass drum. This was around the 1940’s and 50’s. Rock drummers such as Keith Moon, Ginger Baker of Cream, and Mitch Mitchell were the ones who brought double drumming into the masses. made bass drums and bass drumming popular.
Basic Double Drum Exercises for Beginners.
While the tips and exercises here are basic and targeted at beginners, any player can try them out regardless of his level. It will help you brush up on the essential fills played with the double bass drum, as well as provide you with fresh concepts to develop yours.
The double bass drum fills on this page vary – sixteenth note/16thh note triplet and more. Use your hi-hat pedal to practice these fills – that is, if you have no access to two bass drums or a double bass pedal. This will help you work on the control and independence of your weaker foot.
A great way for you to be lunched into the double bass drum fills world is by learning the patterns. When you perfect on the exercises, try to check out a number of the world’s renowned drummers’ double bass drum fills. Some of these pros and their notable fills include Mike Portnoy (Liquid Tension Experiment), Terry Bozzio ( Missing Persons), and Jimmy “The Rev” Sullivan.
This exercise is somewhat simple – it’s a sixteenth note hand to feet combo. You may experience some issues as you transition between the beat and the feels. You need to use your lead foot to play additional stroke on your bass drum, just after you make the final 4 double bass strokes of the fill. At the beginning, do this in a slow manner to help you master how to play the additional bass drum in a more hassle-free manner.
This second exercise is also a sixteenth note hand to feet combo. The initial three counts indicate two strokes are combined with the hands and 2 strokes are combined with the feet. On the other hand, the last count shows a sixteenth note single stroke roll – the playing is accomplished with the hands as well as with the dynamics. You may end up jeopardizing stroke evenness and consistency if you start out this double bass drum fill with a fast tempo. So, begin in a slow manner, while ensuring perfect lining of everything.
On count 4, the crescendo is short. So, go to a high volume from a low one in the shortest possible time frame.
Intermediate Double Base Drum Exercise.
In this section, the focus will be on learning the double bass beats. It will help you to ultimately lunch yourself into the double bass drum beats world. You can draw inspiration from songs that feature double bass drum beats. Typical examples include Alex Van Halen’s “Hot For Teacher”, and Tomas Haake’s “Bleed”.
Making Double Bass Drum Beats!
It is one thing to use your feet in playing a sixteenth note single stroke roll, but a different thing when it comes to playing something extra that lines up perfectly with it. Therefore, in order to perfectly line up everything, ensure you engage a slow tempo while trying out exercise 1. And, if you make this double bass drum beat with no flams, you should proceed to adding speed.
This second exercise is almost the same as the first. The difference is that you will use your feet to play an eighth note triplet single stroke roll, and not a sixteenth note single stroke roll. You will play the quarter notes using the ride hand, while continuously hitting the snare drum with the snare hand on count 2 and count 4. Due to the eighth note triplets, your lead foot will change every other count. In essence, the ride cymbal has to be played in unison using a different foot every other count. This can be tricky, so it requires extra care. And, don’t forget that everything needs to line up perfectly.
Advanced Double Bass Drum Exercise and Tips.
In this section, you will learn some speed tips using the legs and the ankles. As players, it’s common to use the legs for each stroke as you play the double bass. And, since too much energy is required for this sort of motion, it becomes necessary to tone down this movement as you approach faster tempos. Consequently, you get tired too soon and won’t be able to exceed a particular speed level.
At this point, you will engage your ankle instead. The ankles have smaller muscles, and are able to perform better than the bigger muscles as a result, in terms of endurance and speed.
You’ll get different opinions from different drummers on how to achieve speed when it comes to double bass drumming. Some drummers use heel down, and some use heel up. You should do what comes naturally.
My personal preference is to use a single three stroke ruff with my double bass pedal as part of a bass drum pattern and during drum fills. It’s very addicting because it sounds cool and is fun to deploy.