I thought the MusicAdemy article on top 10 do’s and don’ts for drummers in Church was really good. But I thought I’d also share one further thing I’ve encountered in my journey so far…but it is a major thing.
LISTENING. I don’t mean listening and learning the set list for Sunday. I don’t mean on a lyrical point of view. I mean listening to music. Lots of music. Not just the latest worship albums. Secular music. To be a bit forthright, I sometimes get through one of the latest mainstream worship albums and find it slightly difficult to not feel slightly bored by the third or fourth song. Yes, there is a distinctive sound, and that’s no major flaw, but a huge strength. But it’s a stylistic thing. I’m not trying to criticize it, nor could I justifiably because of the impact they and others have had on Contemporary Worship music. But it’s mainstream stuff. For the masses. And it sounds great. The lyrics are good, the musicianship is good. But…how did they form their sound? Through extensive listening…to secular music predominantly! Of course I don’t want to make this sound like an exercise, but why not challenge yourself to listen to more and more music? Funk, rock, metal, jazz, fusion, Latin pop, R&B, etc etc? Learn from great musicians, listen to great drummers, enjoy expanding your horizons. Do your research. With so much music available online there are virtually no boundaries. You’ll find that it’s really helpful in your development as a musician. Enjoy!
What about this for a listening exercise, check out these bands:
Snarky Puppy, Funkadelic, The Meters, James Brown, Tower of Power
Tito Puente, Horacio ‘El Negro’ Hernandez, Santana
Buddy Rich Big Band, Maynard Ferguson Big Band, Tommy Igoe, Duke Ellington
Miles Davis, Dave Brubeck, John Coltrane, Steely Dan
Chick Corea, Herbie Hancock, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Tony Williams LifeTime
Metallica, Tool, Iron Maiden
Genesis, Rush, Yes, Dream Theater
Peter Gabriel, Take That, Toto, Boz Scaggs
Just a few to get you going, hopefully! Stay tuned for more of these articles. The next one will be based on great albums to listen to.