Drum 101

So you’re wanting to have some drum lessons but what should you expect and what do you need to get started?

Fist things first, its a good idea to invest in your own drum sticks. They don’t need to be the most expensive, and over time you will no doubt refine your choice as your playing develops; but brands such as: Promark, Vic Firth, Ahead and Vater all make reliable models to get you started.

With having some new sticks its a great habit to practise holding these and get used to the feel and response and developing your grip. The original, if not a bit old school, method was to practice on cushions to simulate drums. This isn’t a guaranteed system for success but in the very beginning provides a simple understanding of movement.

Another wise investment and coordinates with having real drum lessons, is to purchase some decent hearing protection. hearingprotection

With volume levels that can hurt and damage hearing, we fully endorse playing with some defenders. These can be provided at the beginning but of course it would be worth buying your own in time; after all, we all have different preferences!

So you have the sticks and some hearing protection, what next…?

Well, lessons! Now you have the basics to start. The only thing you need to consider is how much patience and determination you can summon.

A common problem with beginning the drum journey, is in fact that one word; “Journey”. There is never a time that any drummer at any level reaches the end of their learning. “I’ve never sat down and thought, – you know what, that’s it, I’m at the top of my game, and sat back and folded my arms!” – Mike Johnston Drum Clinic, March 2017.

The journey is a never ending process and like any other musical instrument, learning and development is a life long quest.

The beginning can be frustrating and hard work but that part soon passes and develops quickly into more technical skills. The great thing about lessons is that we can then look back at achievements, see what journey we have been on and map the future of our playing.

Yes, it can take some learners longer than others to accomplish various skills, there are ways to perhaps address such frustrations by adding a simple yet vital part of the drummers home practice – the Practice Pad.

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The practice pad is an excellent way to hone skills and in particular to develop stick control and learning drum rudiments. With the technical introduction of rudiments, which are the cornerstone of any players arsenal, they are also a necessary component in advancing through the Rock School Grades and exams.

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Time is a major investment, practising skills at home, learning new techniques in lessons all take a large part of any individuals learning trajectory. There is no short cut, applying time to learn efficiently will provide positive results and unlock achievements faster. Knowing what to or how to practice can be daunting, however, lessons can be the platform to stimulate and direct choices on your learning path.

Whether you want weekly, fortnightly or even monthly lessons, we can work at your pace, maintaining a full lesson diary that maps every students drumming evolution. Give yourself the space, time and patience to ensure your excitement on beginning to learn the drums meets your expectations.

Investing in your education should be fun but challenging. A new challenge usually encounters hard work but the end results can be amazing!

If you’re excited about learning, want to know more or would like to book some lessons; please use the contact from below! Lets go!! 🙂

 

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Left hand, right hand, kick..

DSCN0605To be a great drummer is to have balance, time, groove and independence.

It goes without saying, whether you are new or a pretty established player, working on these core principles can be a statement of how far an individual can be judged, for most of us this is a state of constant learning.

But, that does not mean that we don’t possess the attributes to be a great drummer, after all, individuality and our own level of ability makes us who we are; the more interesting and different a drummer plays can often go a lot further.

So as standards, we probably unfairly compare ourselves to our heroes or influences. Personally, I like to think of music as a whole and not just an individual instrument. It’s a totally different experience when isolating the drum tracks to a favourite song! I absolutely do pay more attention to what the drums are doing, whats been played, what beats or fills are being used, but I am brought to a drummer by the song in general. Therein lies the problem!

Comparisons can have a limiting effect, especially on those who are new and aspiring. There are naturally a lot of variables in trying to play like our favourite drummer, anything from the drums used, the room it was recorded in, the producer doing the recording to the player themselves. To replicate isn’t impossible but you are you and not them. I still don’t really understand when I hear things like,  I want to be able to play just like Neil Peart, Dave Grohl, Mike Portnoy, Travis Barker, Lars Ulrich etc. Why? Although I have many influences and enjoy listening and getting inspiration from these drummers, I want to develop my own style and my own sound.

As a drum educator I believe in developing your sound, establishing what you need to get better and together we can learn from each other and make real progress. I believe in setting standards and achieving goals, but I am interested in musicality, natural playing and accompaniment.

There is a place for grading and taking performance and instrument exams. For those wishing to pursue a line of work in music, those wishing to go to college and study music or perhaps even just as a personal achievement, I am a big endorser for learning through Rock School or Trinity Guildhall. I have taken graded exams myself and am proud to have got to a level where I am but I don’t think I will ever stop learning.

Thinking of learning the drums can be a daunting prospect, like with anything new, there is a lot to think about and a lot to learn. For drums, developing muscle memory is a process than cannot be shortened. It takes time and patience to get comfortable with some techniques and to harness speed. As its often said but often overlooked, start SLOW!

Being balanced with both hands, having sound technique, pushing 3 way into 4 way coordination, developing independence and control  and having a strong sense of timing are at the heart of drumming.

Learning to play has to fit in with you and what YOU want to achieve. Whether this is unlocking how to play certain songs, for your own enjoyment, to understand how to use better technique, how to be more comfortable in your own ability, perhaps with your band, achieving grade 8 or just wanting to be a weekend hobbyist – there is no right or wrong.

Whatever your need, whatever your wish or direction playing the drums, Ghostnote Academy can provide bespoke lessons tailored to your specific goals.

So give it a try..pick up those sticks!! 🙂

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©ghostnoteacademy.com2017

**FREE DRUM LESSONS!**

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For a limited time you can “Try before you Buy!”

Offering a totally free, no obligation free Drum Lesson for those who are looking for lessons or thinking of getting behind the kit.

From now until the end of April 2017, you can book a 30 minute lesson to have a taste of what you can expect from playing and learning the drums.

The offer is valid to one free lesson per person and to new customers.

To claim a free lesson please call : 07949 327058 or email : ghostnoteacad@gmail.com

There is absolutely no obligation to book further lessons, so why not claim a free lesson for all you budding new drummers out there!

©ghostnoteacademy.com

New Year’s Resolution!?

dscn0410What does 2017 have in store for you?

Planning something exciting? Some new way to preoccupy your time or learning a new skill?

To achieve a successful change in lifestyle or a new past time it takes a number of steps to make it work, Here are 6 to help you on your way..

The first point to think about is to pick just one thing. There is no need to try and shoot at multiple targets and miss, select one and make sure you do it well and satisfy your own progress.

Secondly, make a good plan of what is necessary and what might be needed. It could be that your new venture might cost more than you think!!! A third consideration would be to anticipate problems and so developing patience would be key here. Most new skills take time to learn and perfect so establishing a reasonable learning curve would help in achieving goals and show positive results.

A fourth point, one which is commonly overlooked, is to pick a start date, or even a length of time to complete certain activities or goals. Don’t pick random dates and fail to prepare adequately; time and again some negative experiences make a resolution short! Linking this to point number five; expect to fail! Not everything will go your way, some things take a lot more control and discipline, therefore, embrace the failures and provide this as a catalyst to succeed even further next time!

The last point, or the sixth on the list, is to just go for it! At whatever stage, at whatever cost, ability, access or age, most new choices can be daunting but there is always a way. It does not always have to cost the earth or for you to be Gods gift from the beginning. Take a chance on yourself and dedicate some time to do something you want to do and make 2017 the year that you want it to be!

At GhostNote Academy we can provide all of the elements to achieve all those outlined above. We can work with you to keep track on your targets, to develop a key skill or even just to get you started. We have all the equipment you need, playing and learning out of Melrose Yard Studios on a full studio drum kit, there is no outlying cost of purchasing all manner of gear. There are also exclusive opportunities to receive or claim promotional offers on lessons to assist on saving money further, just don’t forget your hearing protection!!

Of course, there will be times when you feel that your not making progress; indeed, many drummers (myself included) would consider themselves to be continually learning new skills, its just an evolution of your sound! Despair not, we have the experience and the patience needed to underline those achievements and take the time to work on those stubborn tricks that make you scorn your sticks! So make a note in your diary/calendar, pick a suitable date in the new year and make it count!

We are excited to start an amazing new year and hope you will join us too!

Happy New Year!! 🙂

 

©GhostNoteAcademy2016

 

 

DBS Enhanced

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GhostNote Academy  is fully DBS (formerly CRB) checked with an enhanced certificate dated October 2016.

In accordance with Government education standards in promoting health and safety within the learning environment and with the cooperation of the Musicians Union, at GhostNote Academy  we take every effort to complete all necessary steps to provide a safe, comfortable and stimulating place of learning.

We take pride in the development of our students, whatever their age and/or ability and strive to deliver quality education in all matter of drum performance and drum related services.

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©GhostNoteAcademy2016

Musicians’ Union

musicians-union-brandAs a full member of the Musicians’ Union I take pride in not only using the union to get the latest in teaching practices and methods but I also have all the resources available in providing the best and well researched music education.

By having the support of the union I have an ever growing source of new material from other members to guest speakers and posts, taking the Musicians’ Union on this teaching journey delivers the most up to date information.

As well as the obvious benefits, the union also provides liability insurance, disclosure and barring service checks and additional learning in child protection in music education.

Taking the welfare and safety of my students is of paramount importance, providing music learning while offering piece of mind for both student and learners families is at the heart of what GHOSTNOTE ACADEMY aims to achieve.

Music is fun and learning to play an instrument should be happy, enjoyable and safe.

So why not take advantage of exciting, new lessons? From one drummer to another..

 

©ghostnoteacademy2016

25% off in October

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October is generally the month we go back to learning, back to uni, school, college etc so why not take advantage of this autumn offer and get 25% off all drum lessons for a whole month!!

Book a 1 to 1 lesson for all existing or new students and pay £15 for your hour lesson!

If you’re new to drums, don’t worry, we can take care of your drumming apprehension with our relaxed and easy paced lessons to get you playing.

So take advantage and get in contact, we’d love to hear from you!

Happy drumming 🙂

 

©ghostnoteacademy