Written and produced by funk drumming specialist Jim Payne and recommended by drumming greats Peter Erskine, Stanton Moore, Steve Smith, Zoro, and Bill Stewart, Advanced Funk Drumming (Modern Drummer Publications) combines a wealth of practical ideas with modern technology to make it easier and more intuitive for drummers to learn new grooves and an essential drumming style. This advanced multimedia package includes a book with fully notated transcriptions and tips plus two DVDs with more than 200 QuickTime video and MP3 audio clips.
“For most drummers—whether they read music or not—the fastest, easiest way to learn drum patterns is to watch, listen, and play along with them,” says Payne, who has played, recorded, and taught drums for many years and is the author of several books on the subject of funk drumming, including Funk Drumming, The Complete Book Of Funk Drumming, The Great Drummers Of R&B, Funk & Soul, and 100 Famous Funk Beats. “As a teacher, I’ve found the most helpful instruction is often for me to simply play the grooves and let my students absorb them. For Advanced Funk, I recorded video clips of the patterns and put them in a loop format so that drummers can play along until the grooves are mastered.”
In producing Advanced Funk Drumming, Payne composed and video-recorded the grooves before transcribing them. The first half of the book, Sections 1 through 14, is organized in a sequential manner; moving from simple grooves to more advanced permutations. Sections 15 through 21 present additional patterns in a more organic and sometimes random progression. To further facilitate the “multi-sensory” learning process, many of the beats are shown in both slow and fast versions. The speed of video loops can be further reduced using the standard software in QuickTime, which is very helpful for teachers and students.
Although Payne has included beats that support the development of specific techniques that are required to correctly and comfortably perform contemporary funk drumming patterns, another progressive aspect of the project is its relative lack of purely technical exercises. According to Payne, “If you find that your ghost notes, accents, left-hand doubles, 16th-note doubles on the bass drum, or constant 16ths on the hi-hat aren’t cutting it, you can always practice them independently. Advanced Funk Drumming, like advanced funk drumming, itself, is based on the principle that it’s more important to understand the fundamental musical concepts and achieve the right feel than it is to be able to play difficult, complicated beats.”
Advanced Funk Drumming carries a suggested retail price of $24.95 and is available online today through the Drummer Cafe!