Topic: Performing while drumming  (Read 4691 times)

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DrumsAreCool

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Performing while drumming
« on: August 17, 2002, 11:58 PM »
Everytime i play in front of people, i feel like i just cant play the drums and sit there, i have to perform for the audience. How do guys play the dums without being boring?

AndyDierker

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2002, 12:12 PM »
I try to... not do this. I dunno. I just feel lame twirling sticks and making faces. It's fine if you do it - I just feel uncomfortable.

Online Bart Elliott

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2002, 12:32 PM »
My opinion ... younger players tend to focus more on the "performance" or "appearance" rather than the actual music. I think this is why I no longer accept beginners or younger private students. I just don't have the patience with someone who is not wanting to be the best they can be musically ... first.

So, I don't know how old or young you are ... but if you are a teenager, I would advise you to focus on being a great player BEFORE you start worrying about having to put on a show and "perform for the audience". If you are as good as Tony Royster Jr., then maybe you should spend time learning how to be a showman. If not, then stick to playing better. You've got enough to worry about just keeping a steady beat, playing creatively, making the music feel good ... and most of all ... just making good music!

Oh, and to answer your question ... I just play the drums and express myself on the instrument; not worrying what others are thinking. How anyone would be bored watching a good drummer play is beyond me. But then again, with a world full of fast food, fast cars ... getting everything now and not willing to wait, spending more than we make (debt), it's no wonder people might get bored with simplicity.

I'm not hammering you or anyone else for that matter; I'm just telling it as I see it ... and it's only my opinion.

Azrael63

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2002, 02:55 PM »
This brings up a funny issue.  For ages, guitarists have been infamous for making faces while they play.  I've been a guitarist for much longer than I've been drumming, and people tell me I make some scary (guitarist) faces when I'm really getting into a song.  If you don't know you're making the faces when it's happening, how can you stop?  And furthermore, why should the guitarists get to have all the face-making, musically-grimacing fun?  ;)

Offline Mark Schlipper

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2002, 06:03 PM »
great cases of "drumface" -

art blakey
elvin jones
keith moon
charlie watts (NOT!)

check out drummerworld.com and look up you fav :)

Making bad art.  Saying stupid things.  Implimenting my master plan to be forgotten when I'm gone and forgettable while I'm here.

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Nomad442

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2002, 11:42 PM »
I personally dont see what the big deal is.  You dont have to be a virtuoso on the drums to make it sound good musically.  If a drummer wants to add a little visual flare to his drumming by all means do so.  Most people in the audience cant even tell the difference.

Offline Kevin Gaines

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2002, 09:55 AM »
Most people in the audience cant even tell the difference.

Then whom/what are you doing it for ?


Offline Big Yummy

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2002, 10:10 AM »
Would you rather write like James Joyce or Hemmingway?  Would you rather drum like Neil Peart or Charlie Watts?  Would you rather jump around like Tommy Lee or hide behind your kit?

Any answer is acceptable and no matter how you answer, someone will criticize you for it.  

And quite rightly so.
"Some people say I ain't so super groovy.  Why don't I leave the music alone?"  Black Uhuru

Online Bart Elliott

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #8 on: August 19, 2002, 10:22 AM »
Well ... just to clarify my point ... I'm not dogging anyone for being a showman or "performing" for the audience. But when a YOUNG player focuses on that FIRST before being able to even play their instrument, to me that is out of balance priority wise.

I guess priority is a good word. Perhaps the question is "what should come first, the music or the performance appearance?" ... or something like that.

Everyone watches the drummer; whether it's Peart or Watts ... the drummer is in constant motion which attracts the eye of the viewer. It's the instrumentalists that have to work a lot harder with "performing for the audience" because technically speaking they have to move very little to accomplish the music. A singer only needs to open and close their mouth, a guitarist only needs to finger the frets and strum with wrist/forearm (assuming this is in the rock genre), keyboardist only needs to move the fingers to play. The drummer, on the other hand is getting a full work-out. All the limbs are moving, and if volume is high, the sticks are coming way above the drums.  The other musicians have to move around and "get into it" just to draw some of the attention AWAY from the drummer.

So ... again, I think it's great to work on stage presence and performance ... all the big acts do it .... but you should have your music down FIRST ... and that should be the priority ... in my opinion.

BAnimalG

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #9 on: August 19, 2002, 11:55 AM »
Mmmmm, drumface!  LOL!!  I am the world's worst drumface maker.   :)  ;)  :D ;D >:(  :(

Offline timmin

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #10 on: August 19, 2002, 12:30 PM »
I believe there is a time and place for everything.

I do agree with Bart and others that the first priority is to know and perform your music properly. With every audience being different, there is no cut-n-dried answer to this question.

If I'm playing a club and those babes at the table across the dance floor are really into us, I'm gonna think, to heck with that intricate fill I just spent a week pounding in my head, I'm might twirl and point a stick at the one in the halter-top that keeps grinning at me ;D On the other hand, if I am auditioning or doing a fill-in with some seasoned pickers, then I would definitely concentrating on nailing down every lick of the song no matter how boring I may look doing it.

In my opinion, there is no screw-up more obvious than one caused by hot-dogging. Many times I have done something flashy or crazy only to get everyone's attention as I screwed up royally coming back into the song...Hate when that happens :-[
Timmin

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Online Bart Elliott

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #11 on: August 19, 2002, 12:45 PM »
In my opinion, there is no screw-up more obvious than one caused by hot-dogging. Many times I have done something flashy or crazy only to get everyone's attention as I screwed up royally coming back into the song...Hate when that happens :-[

Man ... you are so right about the "hot-dogging" comment.

I'm going to confess something that I am sooooooo ashamed of. So let the teasing commence.

When I was in Junior High School, I think 8th Grade, the school jazz band was playing a concert for the school ... like in a school assembly ... and I was playing drumkit.

So ... being an immature adolescent that I was, I PRE-PLANNED to lose a stick in the middle of a song, and grab my "back-up" at the precise moment  ... also pre-planned. What an idiot. I executed this hollow sham effortlessly ... but I'm ashamed that I was such a poser that I wanted to draw attention to myself.   ::)

Needless to say ... I think I'm a lot wiser in my old age.

Offline Dave Sharma

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #12 on: August 19, 2002, 01:27 PM »
it depends on the gig.  For instance, yesterday, I played a bhangra gig... playing dhol, standing up, 4,000 rowdy kids in the club.  If I just stood there, not only would it have looked lame, it wouldn't have been that much fun!

whereas, when I'm playing DnB on kit, what I look like isn't an issue; the music and the beats are there for the taking.

Showmanship is a technique like anything else; and, along those same lines, knowing when to use it is the most important part.  I don't want to see elvin jones toss his lazer-illuminated sticks through a skull-and-crossbones hologram; likewise, I don't want to see tommy lee just sit still.  

actually, now that I think about it...

AndyDierker

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #13 on: August 19, 2002, 08:19 PM »
"I don't want to see elvin jones toss his lazer-illuminated sticks through a skull-and-crossbones hologram"

Oh man, I lost it when I read that. I don't know about you, but man, I would TOTALLY want to see that.

BlackEvovii

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #14 on: August 19, 2002, 09:45 PM »
Being that i got to a lot of concerts and my main focus is on the drummer.  With that said, i have seen a range of drummers who, either play a note on the snare and bring their stick down by their leg, or bring the stick up by their head on each stroke.  Granted, this looks cool, as well as the cross sticking on the times and the effortless no look, bend of the wrist moves too, but the only thing that did for me was say, woa, thats pretty cool, maybe someday i should try that.  Overall, no one gives a @$%#.

monk

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #15 on: August 20, 2002, 11:30 PM »
I think Bartman is right, you should focus the music while preforming. I believe that if you are a good player and you show that on the drums with the band, THIS IS THE SHOW.
I guess doing faces and stuff can be fun and if you are doing that, that should be the reson for it, and if you are bored you should get more interesting band or use more difficult stuff.

By the way if I have spelling mistake here or in my future messages please correct me.
thanks

Offline Daddy0

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #16 on: August 21, 2002, 08:18 PM »
The balance I have found between playing your best and not looking like an automaton is to just be loose and let your body move with the natural rythm of what you are playing -- not exagerated or forced. If you put body and soul into playing, you will just naturally make smooth motions that both look good and aid in keeping time. Remember, your time keeping comes from your whole body, not just your internal clock.

Just groove with what you're doing, and enjoy!

eight

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #17 on: August 23, 2002, 08:53 AM »
I'm a new player so trying to "perform" just distracts me from keeping time and staying in a good groove. I have to admit that it is entertaining to see a drummer as into the performance as the lead guitarist but I'm not comfortable doing that yet. I mostly just concentrate on what I'm doing and let it flow. I do tend to headbang sometimes though  ;D

MVanDoren1

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2002, 12:11 PM »
Now in a sense this might off the subject since the focus has been so far on Bands, but what about DCI?  Here you got the extremes in technique with more than a little showmanship going on.

Oh yeah, the jr. high jazz band and that scrawny kid at the kit- Bart, I can no longer look up to you now that you have dashed my opinions about who you really are ;) ;D LOL

Andrew

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Re:Performing while drumming
« Reply #19 on: August 23, 2002, 04:20 PM »
I think I tend to keep an expression of grim determination on my face throughout a show.

I'm always playing along with a rhythm loop, though, so control's real important. Especially when everyone else in the band is jumping up and down and the stage starts heaving, it's a huge challenge to not get carried away

 

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