rapidly burrowing down the rabbit hole

I've known about SuperCollider for years due to friends here in Austin that introduced me to the author of the program once upon a time at a party. However, until I started working with my electronic drums recently, I didn't have much interest in audio synthesis.

Now, however, I'm being swept up by the combination of amazing MIDI-capable percussion instruments and James' great little object-oriented synthesis language that allows me to experiment with programming entirely new sounds for them.

Oh, yes, uh oh is right. Check out the mad gleam in the programmer percussionist's eyes. Drink me? Eat me. Expect to be hearing some nasty alien drum sounds at the other end of this tunnel, dear hatter...


reverse traditional grip

Not really knowing what I'm doing yet but eager to explore different techniques, I've been playing with an alternate drumstick grip that I thought was a traditional grip (rather than the more common matched grip you'll see most drummers use...especially outside of jazz).

Last night, watching instructional videos on the web, I figured out that I was actually holding the sticks reverse to a traditional grip. Put another way, I'm pretty sure it's appropriate to say that I was playing left-handed traditional grip on a right-handed kit (a traditional leftist?).

The thing is, I was finding that it was incredibly effective. On the right hand, I could move very quickly from striking the snare or hat with the head of the stick to striking toms and ride with the butt of the stick. Further, I could also move very quickly on the right between any two drums due to this ability to use both ends of the stick.

Even though it's not one of the grips I'm "supposed" to be practicing, I'm going to keep playing with this in addition to matched and proper traditional since it feels so effective. I'm probably learning all sorts of horrible habits that will make me untrainable in the future when I take lessons from others...


kicking rudiments

I've been learning how to play the drum kit. In addition to just trying to keep a simple groove, I started working on the most basic of rudiments exercises I've been finding on the web.

After doing this straight eighth note pattern for a while between my two sticks on the snare, I figured it would be good for me to do the same thing with my feet on the kick pedals.

Within a few minutes at just 80 bpm, I was incredibly sore. I guess I've got a long way to go before I can play The Black Page...even the easy teenage New York version. ;-)