I did a search the other day for “polyrhythm” on my iPhone app store and found a FREE app called “PolyRhythm”. It was created by a guy named Wolfram Winkel, and let me tell you, this app really rocks!

It lets you create two sets of patterns using, 2 3 4 and as the beat note, dividing it as high as 13 notes. It displays the “notes against notes” using standard notation, and it gives you an audible sound.

Okay, now this is so cool… why? Because you can get to know what the patterns really sound like, just like you did when you were first learning triplets way back when…

The note display also lets you see groupings of notes and where the beat note falls in relation to them. There are some very heplful relationships to be discovered here that make playing polyrhythms MUCH easier.

Gavin Harrison talks about them as illusions, and he’s absolutely right. This illusion is clearly revealed with slow practice… so if you want to get into Vinnie’s world… here’s the door…

And then, there’s another simple and FREE app you might want to download to help you with that practice. It’s a free metronome from Marketwall.com, and you can set the tempo from 1 beat per minute all the way up to 210 beats per minute.

If you look in the lower, righthand corner, you’ll see an “info” logo that you can click to spin the display around to reveal the meter options of 2/4, 3/4 and 4/4.  Very, very cool…

Once you get used to hearing what the polyrhythm subdivisions really sound like, you can use the Metronome app to practice the patterns and really dial them in.

These two apps, honestly, could really push the overall performance level of the drumming community WAYYYYYY up. Of course, to really make things interesting, you would want to work the groups of two patterns (beat and polyrhythm beat) between your other limbs.

For example, ince you get comfortable with 5:3 between your hands, you could try it with your feet, then hands and feet… remember, your muscles are just fibers and nerves… tell them what to do and watch your rhythmic world EXPLODE!

I’m tellin’ ya, this stuff IS THE FUTURE OF DRUMMING!