My First YouTube Video About My Books, The Elements of Rhythm, Volumes I & II


Okay, lemme tell ya up front: THIS was some work! And for those of you who’ve already done it, my hat is off to you. For those thinking about making a drum video of sorts, I figure it might be helpful to tell you a little about the process I experienced in hopes that can save you some time and steps.

The short version: I bought a GoPro, a backdrop system to hang fabric, some lights and stands, a very functional tripod (good lord, a must!), a complete set of mics for a 10-piece drum set, a mixer, dug out my ProTools LE8, bought another Mac laptop that could process the GoPro 4k images, and I borrowed a really nice HD video camera as a backup.

The short short version: no GoPro, no mics, minimal kit, and I only used the HD camera and one lighting stand.

What I discovered was that… the new version of iMovie was getting slammed reviews, and I couldn’t figure out how to strip original audio from the incoming iMovie 8 file and layer it with a ProTools sound track. My old laptop worked just fine, and I was able to import the footage, move it around and edit it, add some still shots and some music audio, and get it up and running on YouTube.

Seriously, I wasn’t experienced with this stuff to the degree I wanted to be, but it got done… which is all that matters.

If you’ve been following my last few posts, I’ve been sharing what I’ve been able to accomplish to move forward with getting my stuff out all over the world. We have the technology… but not all of it easy to grasp. It ain’t perfect, but I don’t care. I began the journey three decades ago with this project, so, tonight, I’m happy it got launched in one piece.

Meanwhile, I hope your individual drumming projects are moving forward, and hey, keep pounding if they aren’t done yet. You’ll sleep pretty good once they are, and then you’ll wake up and want to do more.

Enjoy, and remember: Everything You’ll Ever Play Comes From Here!

elements-cover-I                elements-cover-II

Recharging the Drumming Batteries

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 more so 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.