I spent probably five hours practicing today, more than I have put into it in I can’t remember how long. It was broken up over the full day, a rare one where I took off from work, but it was a very positive day.

Rudiments with brushes loosened things up, for about thirty minutes. Then some basic jazz time keeping for about thirty minutes, then more hand conditioning with different weight sticks. I alternate between 7A’s with nylon tips, Vic Firth Slammers (maple) and then some larger Vic Firth marching sticks.

In the past couple of days, my left hand has FINALLY gotten the hang of the Moeller fulcrum, which does feel weird… but it feels good, too, and it works.

I also spent some time playing off meter grooves and filming myself. WOW… what a valuable tool, even moreso than just taping yourself (I use the H2 digital recorder, which I can’t say enough good thing about for the money). Anyway, the video was a GREAT tool to really let me SEE myself playing too much. It was a simple 5/4 jazz samba, and it really worked so much better with less.

I took breaks when my hands got tight, as I am working to keep things as relaxed as I can. A big part of that is relaxing your mind and MAKING YOURSELF SLOW DOWN if you fall into a practice routine of just blazing…

It all felt great, and I am looking forward to more of the same tomorrow.