Improving metronome practice as a drummer can be hard, so that’s why we have listed five tips. Get you started with downloading the The Metronome and get on with these tips.
1. Drill the weak stuff
Practice areas where you find the most trouble with, those bars where you derail from the usual groove and boom, you jump back in a second too late.
Improving metronome practice as a drummer requires obviously the use of a metronome. This way you’ll have a standard way to find your weak spots and perfect the areas that you find yourself having problems with. Loop three bars of groove and a bar of whatever it is you’re finding it hard to stay in time with. You’ll probably find your self pushing or pulling depending on what you’re playing, but the more you play it the tighter you’ll get!
2. Start slow to play fast
The most obvious use of a metronome is to help drummers slow down difficult passages while keeping the pace consistent. This lets you to work through challenging bars without making mistakes, and lets you gradually increase the speed as you become more familiar with it.
One effective technique that lets you build up speed is to find a challenging section and isolate it when practicing. Identify the shortest note value in the section. Set your metronome to 60 BPM and practice through the passage with the shortest note value equal to 60 BPM.
For example, if the shortest note value is a sixteenth note then practice the passage so that every sixteenth note receives one beat, every eighth note receives two beats, etc… Once you’ve done this flawlessly, increase the metronome speed till you get as fast as you want to go!
3. Practice at different tempos
Vary the speed of the click so that you are able to play beats and fills at ALL tempos. Some drummers find that certain tempos are more difficult to play along to than others so work at these speeds the most. Try the metronome at different tempos and see where your weak spots are and really really work on them.
4. Displace the first beat
Who says the click of the metronome has to be the downbeat? If you’re swinging or playing reggae you can do amazing things for your sound by playing off the beat! Just as long as you can resist not making your beat 1 the metronomes beat 1. You can go crazy and just displace by a 1/16th note, have fun with it really get into the groove and swing of things!
5. Practice practice practice your fills
Speeding up or slowing down during drum fills is something that happens to every drummer. Its really common to rush fills during slower tempos or speeding up during fast tempos. When practicing fills with a metronome make sure you’re keeping them in the context of the groove. Practice in groups of four measures, with three bars of groove and a bar of fill or two bars of groove and a bar of fill.
Soundbrenner is a company dedicated to help musicians stay focused on what truly matters: their music. By creating innovative devices, such as The Metronome App, our goal is to deliver the best possible practice experience for musicians.
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