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LOUNGE => General Board => Topic started by: Steve "Smitty" Smith on March 13, 2008, 03:40 PM

Title: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Steve "Smitty" Smith on March 13, 2008, 03:40 PM
On the gig the other night, I was engaging in my usual mental self-critique, and it occurred to me that out of shear laziness I have been overusing a very overused drum fill/phrase.  I’m not a schooled drummer, so I’ll do my best to describe this phrase:

Flam - bass - flam – bass.

It sounds like this:

Blacka-blacka

You know, you’re cruising along playing a straight-ahead rock beat – maybe playing quarter notes on the hi-hat or the crash cymbal, and when it’s time to transition into the chorus:

Blacka-blacka!

Okay, you’re laughing at my primitive description – and rightly so! 

But I hope you get my drift.

This fill is so overused, probably because it’s so easy to do, and it kinda feels good and tough.  But it seems to me that this is a pretty lame lick.

I should stop taking the easy way out and cut down on the blacka-blackas

Any one have any other hackneyed drum riffs that maybe should be sent out to pasture?
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Bart Elliott on March 13, 2008, 03:44 PM
I don't know that anything is overused if it's appropriate for the song ... but here's a few common ones.

"Pat Boone, Debbie Boone"

"Bucket of Fish"

Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Steve "Smitty" Smith on March 13, 2008, 03:51 PM
"Pat Boone, Debbie Boone"

"Bucket of Fish"

Oh, those are funny!!

"Pat Boone, Debbie Boone" instantly made me think of the Guns N' Roses tune "November Rain"  I think Matt Sorum played about 800 "Pat Boone, Debbie Boones" in that song! I think I remember reading that it was Axl Rose who insisted that he keep repeating that fill.

On edit:  It wasn't "Live and Let Die" as I originally thought -- though I think there are a few "Pat Boone, Debbie Boones" in that tune as well.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Chip Donaho on March 13, 2008, 03:52 PM
Well down that same thought there is a flam, flam tap, drag....Just to name a few. That's just a start.  ;D
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: diddle on March 13, 2008, 10:19 PM
here's a few common ones.

"Pat Boone, Debbie Boone"

"Bucket of Fish"


hehe... never heard that description, but it conveys the fill nicely  :D
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Chris Whitten on March 13, 2008, 10:25 PM
I make it a habit to play overused and cliche drum fills.
They usually fit the song like a pair of old slippers.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: jb78 on March 13, 2008, 10:26 PM
hahahaha!  Matt Sorum totally did Pat Boone Debbie Boone in November Rain! 
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Chris Whitten on March 13, 2008, 10:38 PM
The UK equivalent is 'Flats in Dagenham'.

There are lots of fills described by Indian food items. I think Gregg Bissonette often mentions them in his clinics.

Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Brett Tanner on March 14, 2008, 12:42 AM
I've been recently thinking kinda similar thoughts this thread's talking about.  I'm a little uninitiated about these cliches so I'm trying to parse through them.  I get the "blacka-blacka".  I think I understand the pat boone debbie boone but I gotta ask about the bucket of fish & flats in dagenham. 

Is bucket of fish.....kick, snare, kick again, then snare and cymbal at the same time?  I know if I heard it, this could be a lot easier.

Anyway, my main band plays somewhat slower and it's heavy.  I'm usually using eighth notes on hh and ride.  I'm really wrestling with trying to be creative with fills and change overs and even slightly different beats or accents with, say, the same guitar riff...but a slightly different feel if that part of the song might call for it.  This includes playing softer or louder.

Presently, I've been moving some of these basic fills around the set and changing accents.  For instance, I'll flame on the rack tom & snare but accent the tom  stroke first.

I know this is hard to describe in words but is there a way that can be described or work on that can help with creativity?
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Tkitna on March 14, 2008, 03:08 AM
All my fills are old and over used. Thats what happens when your not good enough to create new ones.  8)
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Eskil Sæter on March 14, 2008, 03:48 AM
Oh, those are funny!!

"Pat Boone, Debbie Boone" instantly made me think of the Guns N' Roses tune "November Rain"  I think Matt Sorum played about 800 "Pat Boone, Debbie Boones" in that song! I think I remember reading that it was Axl Rose who insisted that he keep repeating that fill.

On edit:  It wasn't "Live and Let Die" as I originally thought -- though I think there are a few "Pat Boone, Debbie Boones" in that tune as well.

Matt Sorum didn't really use any other fill throughout the entire two Use Your Illusion albums. He sometimes cut it down to just "Debbie Boone", but he really did completely overuse that fill back then.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Bart Elliott on March 14, 2008, 07:58 AM
Is bucket of fish.....kick, snare, kick again, then snare and cymbal at the same time?  I know if I heard it, this could be a lot easier.

It's around the drums ... Snare, Tom 1, Tom 2, Kick (or Floor Tom) ... triplet + 1.

Traditionally speaking that is.  ;)
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Todd Knapp on March 14, 2008, 08:32 AM
Gadd's made a career out of the ol' Bucket-Of-Fish...

And couple other things too, I suppose...   ;)

I don't really worry about overplaying a fill -- UNLESS -- I'm using it out of habit or laziness in places where another fill would work better..

Basically, my concern is not sounding rote, but falling asleep at the wheel and letting my own limitations dictate the music rather than the needs of the music itself.

To paraphrase an old saying (and Chrisso above), "If the fill fits, blare it..."

I also think it's beneficial to take those old, overplayed, everyone's heard 'em fills, and change them just a little to make them your own. Perhaps the voicing, or the sticking or some other slight change can give the familiar effect of the old fill, while adding a little personal flair and signature to the sound.

As an example - take the familiar "Boooom-bidap-boom" lead-in fill that the Motown drummers used to play (though each of them had their own way of doing it if you listen carefully). Dave Garibaldi ripped that fill off for the start of What Is Hip? but he plays it as a 6-stroke roll between the tom, snare and floor tom. The tradition and familiarity is there and the fill absolutely works in the situation, but Garibaldi made it his own.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: NY Frank on March 14, 2008, 08:55 AM
My playing is one big cliche.

 :)
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: SteveR on March 14, 2008, 09:41 AM
Yeah, I'm one of those that thinks there's no such thing as an "overused" fill as long as it fits the song. I use the "bla-ka, bla-ka, bla-ka, bla-ka" (4 times instead of 2) fill in a lot of funk tunes we do, and it never fails to get me a look of approval from my bass player - which is what it's all about IMO. It really sets up the next phrase and always adds to the groove.

As an example - take the familiar "Boooom-bidap-boom" lead-in fill that the Motown drummers used to play (though each of them had their own way of doing it if you listen carefully). Dave Garibaldi ripped that fill off for the start of What Is Hip? but he plays it as a 6-stroke roll between the tom, snare and floor tom. The tradition and familiarity is there and the fill absolutely works in the situation, but Garibaldi made it his own.
I like that fill as well. I use it all the time. Unless it's late in the night and/or I've had a few drinks - in which case I'll substitute the 6-stroke roll with a buzz-roll.  ;)

Now that you mention it, I'm pretty sure most of my fills are "cliched" but, like Stuart Smally would say, that's.........OK. I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and dog-gone-it....my bandmates like my playing.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: felix on March 14, 2008, 10:44 AM
The book from Fred Dinkin's "It's about Time" has a section entitled "Money Fills"- some of them are really good and require left hand lead to make them groove and come into the one comfortably.

Cliche' fills always sound great when grooving and perhaps revoiced like boomka suggested.

It's hard to make tuned drums sound bad when they are mixed well with the band and grooving.  Just my 2 cents.   :)
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: diddle on March 14, 2008, 11:01 AM
The UK equivalent is 'Flats in Dagenham'.

There are lots of fills described by Indian food items. I think Gregg Bissonette often mentions them in his clinics.

ooh, I love Indian food... how 'bout this for a fill?

Murg Sag-walla

Chi-Ken Tikki

aloo gobi masala

 ;D
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Jim R. on March 14, 2008, 02:08 AM
If you can say it, you can play it.

Or, if you can eat it while playing it....


I'm still laughing everytime I read Pat Boone, Debbie Boone!!!!
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Mister Acrolite on March 14, 2008, 10:51 AM
 http://www.keithcronin.com/grooves/rosanna.mp3]This groove  starts out with a nice "bucket of fish."  :)

Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Bart Elliott on March 14, 2008, 10:54 AM
http://www.keithcronin.com/grooves/rosanna.mp3]This groove  starts out with a nice "bucket of fish."  :)

YEAH BABY! (https://www.drummercafe.com/forum/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.drummercafe.com%2Fforum%2FSmileys%2Femoticons%2Fbaby.gif&hash=5429b8225aeebf5241788abbd2aad5e3)
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Mister Acrolite on March 14, 2008, 11:06 AM
And here's John Bonham, giving us two  http://www.keithcronin.com/drumstuff/bette.mp3]Bette Midlers  followed by a single snare hit.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Vintage Ludwig on March 14, 2008, 12:28 PM
http://www.keithcronin.com/grooves/rosanna.mp3]This groove  starts out with a nice "bucket of fish."  :)


KILLER!
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Vintage Ludwig on March 14, 2008, 12:35 PM
I dont trip too much about overused fills.  Ill try to have fun with them and add to or subtract from the time signature, slip in an extra note or two or three-usually a triplet as opposed to as a flam if I can get away with it.

I dont feel bad about plagiarised fills.  I just try to add a personal touch to them ;)
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Dave Heim on March 14, 2008, 10:12 PM
The tune "Middle of the Road" (Pretenders) opens up with a little drum break.  The break ends with four 'blickems'.  :)

BLICK-em  BLICK-em  BLICK-em  BLICK-em  boom
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Todd Knapp on March 14, 2008, 11:32 PM
http://www.keithcronin.com/grooves/rosanna.mp3]This groove  starts out with a nice "bucket of fish."  :)



Whatever dude, that's been done....
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Paicey on March 15, 2008, 12:55 AM
(all) of my fills are so unique and refreshing that they not only amaze myself but the audience as well. Most of the cliched fills are done by lesser players. I can tell by reading this post that some of you could use a night out to watch me and learn some never before thought of fills. OK!, you want me to admit it?, you wanna hear that Paicey plays a cliched fill now and then?, don't anyone! let this information out. For your information i don't PLAY cliched fills, i simply play fills used before by masters of the craft ;D.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Bart Elliott on March 15, 2008, 01:14 AM
(all) of my fills are so unique and refreshing that they not only amaze myself but the audience as well. Most of the cliched fills are done by lesser players. I can tell by reading this post that some of you could use a night out to watch me and learn some never before thought of fills. OK!, you want me to admit it?, you wanna hear that Paicey plays a cliched fill now and then?, don't anyone! let this information out. For your information i don't PLAY cliched fills, i simply play fills used before by masters of the craft.

You're a funny dude! Yeah, I think that's me too ... I don't play cliche fills, just fills that a lot of great drummers have played before me.  ;D Love it!
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: NY Frank on March 15, 2008, 02:11 AM
And here's John Bonham, giving us two  http://www.keithcronin.com/drumstuff/bette.mp3]Bette Midlers  followed by a single snare hit.

:)  I love all these terms for these fills - that we actually understand.   :)

This is great.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Steve "Smitty" Smith on March 15, 2008, 03:34 AM
http://www.keithcronin.com/grooves/rosanna.mp3]This groove  starts out with a nice "bucket of fish."  :)



Oh yes!
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Absolut on March 15, 2008, 11:46 AM
i understand the whole "bucket of fish" thing, but can someone explain the Pat Boone Debbie Boone fill, so that i can promptly proceed to abuse it? :P
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: memfodrumma on March 15, 2008, 12:19 PM
And here's John Bonham, giving us two  http://www.keithcronin.com/drumstuff/bette.mp3]Bette Midlers  followed by a single snare hit.

aite, Mr. Acrolite, we need to hear 2 Bette Midlers, a Debbie Boone,Tina Turner, back to Bette MIdler, then followed by a James Brown growl!!!! Post it when you get the chance.....
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Vintage Ludwig on March 15, 2008, 01:08 PM
(all) of my fills are so unique and refreshing that they not only amaze myself but the audience as well. Most of the cliched fills are done by lesser players. I can tell by reading this post that some of you could use a night out to watch me and learn some never before thought of fills. OK!, you want me to admit it?, you wanna hear that Paicey plays a cliched fill now and then?, don't anyone! let this information out. For your information i don't PLAY cliched fills, i simply play fills used before by masters of the craft ;D.
LMAO!  Hey dude-most of us do.  I would be skeptical of those who claim they dont or never have!
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Bart Elliott on March 15, 2008, 01:21 PM
i understand the whole "bucket of fish" thing, but can someone explain the Pat Boone Debbie Boone fill, so that i can promptly proceed to abuse it? :P

Pat Boone = one Snare hit followed by one High Tom
Debbie Boone = two Snare hits followed by one Low Tom

The rhythm is: ONE AND TWO E AND

If you read it would be: two eighths followed by two sixteenths then an eighth.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Absolut on March 15, 2008, 11:13 PM
Thanks Bart, it all makes sense now. hopefully i get a chance to drum today, might have homework though. oh well, ill find some time to use it  ;D
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Jim R. on March 16, 2008, 03:13 AM
Cliche' fills were the reason I used to rearrange my toms so they weren't high to low. I never wanted to play straight 16's down the toms, I wanted to come up with something else.
I think Billy Cobham was the first player I saw changing the toms around.
But now, a great fill is a great fill.
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Danno on March 16, 2008, 01:22 PM
And here's John Bonham, giving us two  http://www.keithcronin.com/drumstuff/bette.mp3]Bette Midlers  followed by a single snare hit.

...and all these years I thought those were "Sandy Duncans".
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: SteveR on March 16, 2008, 11:02 PM
Tried to explain the MAGIC that is "Pat Boone, Debbie Boone" and why it's so funny to my bandmates this weekend. For some reason, they didn't find it as funny as me (or us).

I guess it's just a drummer thing.  :-\
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Bart Elliott on March 17, 2008, 04:34 AM
This video has been shared here before, but not in this context.


Warning: One moment of explicit language (i.e. F-bomb).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCzW4fVRViI

My favorite "fill-etic": Francis Ford Coppola

Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: RHSquonk on March 22, 2008, 01:26 PM
http://www.keithcronin.com/grooves/rosanna.mp3]This groove  starts out with a nice "bucket of fish."  :)


What a way to start one of THE finest shuffle examples.
Just killer. Ghost notes from hell.
RIP Jeff.
~RHS
Title: Re: Overused or Clichéd Drum Fills and Beats
Post by: Adam's Dad on March 24, 2008, 04:31 PM
How about the classic Sopranos fill:

Bada-Bing, Bada-Bang, Bada-Boom!