I had recently been looking to improve my drum skills but I didn’t have time for formal lessons. I turned to the Internet for help. I’ve come across two Meinl artists who are revolutionizing the way people can learn drums. Mike Johnston and JP Bouvet’s educational websites have really helped me improve and bring some new grooves into my practice routine.
Mike Johnston is arguably one of the best educators and definitely the most enthusiastic educator out there. His website mikeslessons.com has been one of the most popular and informational lesson sites in the drumming community. He breaks down everything he plays, slows it down, and communicates what he’s doing clearly so anyone can learn to play and master whatever skill he’s teaching. I primarily use his site when my fills are getting boring and I need something new and exciting. His linear licks can add spice to anyone’s playing and has certainly tuned up my drumming. My favorite is his linear triplet fill that goes KRLKKRLRLKRL in a sixteenth note triplet fashion. It may look simple but, when sped up and applied as a fill around the kit, this lick kills!
JP Bouvet has recently started up his new lesson site, jpbouvetmusic.com. I use this site almost everyday. Going through his Single-Double-Rest Theory has given me four-limb independence I have never known before. I play an ostinato, one part that repeats over and over, and take turns playing a single, double, or rest anywhere it can fall in the measure with any free limb. Through this method I have learned some awesome Latin grooves such as Afro-Cuban and different variations of Samba. I usually don’t play music like this and I was surprised how much learning these grooves could apply to jazz and metal. Playing a bembe on the ride bell and 2/3 clave on the snare, over some double-bass has really opened my eyes to the limitless potential of mixing genres to form something new!