Topic: Long Rolls as fills  (Read 2059 times)

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Offline Rusty Beckett

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Long Rolls as fills
« on: May 14, 2011, 12:40 PM »
I want to use a long roll during some Blues tunes I play as a fill.  The problem I'm having is how to play one "in Time" with the music.  I lead with my right hand, so I find I try to keep the right hand on the beat - in songs that are quicker, that is impossible.  So with those I feel a triplet pulse in the roll and sometimes that works.  Do you have any suggestions?  When not played in the course of a song my rolls are smooth and even, but when used in a song I can't let the beat of the tune go and sometimes the rolls end up sounding rough or I don't come out of the roll on the beat.  Thanks in advance . . .  Rusty 
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Offline Bart Elliott

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Re: Long Rolls as fills
« Reply #1 on: May 14, 2011, 12:48 PM »
    Two quick ideas/concepts for you; rudimental versus orchestral.

    • A rudimental approach would mean that you are playing a fixed number of strokes while buzzing or diddling each stroke.
    • An orchestral approach approach would mean that you play the number of strokes that sound and feel the best, then slightly slow down or speed up to allow the desired hand to land on the downbeat or release note.

    Personally, I would take the orchestral approach. Based on what you described, this is may take some time for you to develop. You maintain the pulse internally while allowing the hands to do what is needed to execute a smooth sounding roll. Speeding up or slowing down SLIGHTLY will go unnoticed since it is a minor adjustment to cause the opposite hand to release the roll. If you don't need to adjust, then you are good to go!

    With the orchestral approach, you're not thinking sixteenths, triplets, etc. It's like performing a roll on the Timpani ... which is single strokes performed at a speed that causes the drum to speak properly. The lower the pitch, the slower the roll; necessary to work with the frequency/cycle of the vibrating membrane.

Offline Rusty Beckett

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Re: Long Rolls as fills
« Reply #2 on: October 30, 2011, 02:49 PM »
I have come up with my own solution for my question.  I came across a video clip on YouTube from Tommy Igoe from his Great Hands for a Lifetime.  He calls it the check pattern.  I've started using it, along with a metronome, for a warm up and an exercise to increase my speed and control.  For the slower speeds I started doing a double time roll instead of keeping the strokes even.  (look for Tommy Igoe: Great Hands for a Lifetime on YouTube to see what I mean).  I've found as I've increased my speed and control I've been able to do an in-time roll at faster speeds and when the song's tempo is faster I can do a roll mentally feeling it with a triplet feel.  Using both methods I can come out of this kind of fill right where I need to be.   
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