All That Jazz

jazz-199547_1280There is a type of school which doesn’t take formal enrollment; an institution without walls or limitations except students’ motivation and dedication. Online learning has reached into every sphere, including music. Aspiring drummers – and those with some knowledge plus a willingness to learn more can use the internet as their source of education, taking their skill with rock or reggae into the realm of jazz, which is a completely different style altogether.

Get into the Rhythm with Jazz Drum Lessons

Several online percussion schools and videos on YouTube have sprung up to encourage those with limited access to or interest in conventional learning. They break the study of drumming into its basic elements: parts of the kit, techniques, reading music specific to the art, theory, and more. Teachers cover all types of styles including Latin, punk, and jazz.

Jazz drummers are expected to have a strong grasp of dynamics as they are utilized heavily by all performers in a jazz band from trumpet to vocals; piano to bass. The person behind the equipment will ghost, slide, crescendo, and diminuendo like everyone else, but first he has to learn what the terms mean, why he uses them, the effects they create, and then how to do them himself.

The music and his routines will come alive with effective use of brushes and sticks at different times and by judicious choice of tone and timbre created by a drum kit he might have underestimated before. A rock drummer doesn’t have to coax these sounds out of his kit: it is amazing how versatile a drum set and his master become when they discover the rudiments of jazz. Before long, a pupil will be playing fills and solos with confidence.

Can You Master the Style Online?

Teachers give guidance in several ways. One is by teaching theory and breaking down movements involved in a drum routine or pattern. Another is by just playing and encouraging viewers to copy. Third is by playing routines by famous musicians such as Billy Cobham, Buddy Rich, Gene Krupa, Jim Keltner, Ringo Starr and many other, for students to examine and copy so they realize what a skilled jazz master sounds like. There are also articles available if these help students really understand the craft. Web-based schools and training programs sometimes offer suggestions as to equipment one can and should purchase; sometimes the site itself will offer recommended kits and accessories for sale.

There is quite a bit of value for people who take the opportunity to learn from a web-based program. There is no doubt that picking up a pair of sticks and getting into the groove is a major stress release for many people, but not if they have to fight fatigue and traffic to arrive at classes on time. The cost of music tuition is equally prohibitive for lots of individuals and families. Internet learning makes it fun, relaxing, and convenient to vent one’s frustrations or tap into a creative side stifled by the daily grind. Lessons can be re-played any number of times until students feel confident. The internet makes the art of drumming accessible to more people; anyone, essentially, who can get his or her hands on a decent kit and some good sticks.