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Dynamics are one of the most important aspects of music. Knowing how to play dynamically enables you to better complement other musicians' parts and create different feeling sections within songs. The Dynamic Drumming section of DrumLessons.com sheds light on the various dynamic drumming techniques that you can apply to your drumming. Going through them will add a whole new dimension and flavor to your drumming and - most importantly - to the music you play. Each topic from this section is covered with beginner to intermediate or advanced free drum lessons. So no matter what you're learning about, we encourage you to take a step-by-step approach and go through the free drum lessons in the order they're presented to you. To get started right away, go check out the free drum lesson "Beginner Ghost Notes".
Ghost notes represent a low dynamic level. They add feel to whatever you play, being especially applicable to groove based music. The free drum lesson "Beginner Ghost Notes" is the place to go if you'd like to get proper education on this subject. You'll get a glimpse of how ghost notes make a groove sound different, while learning how to play simple drum beats with ghost notes in them. The drum beats from "Intermediate Ghost Notes" have exercises with ghost notes positioned exactly one 16th note after and before accented shots, and drum beats with 16th note triplet ghost notes. This is a big step up from the beginner exercises. The exercises from the intermediate lesson will give you the tools needed to go through the creative drum beats from the free drum lesson "Advanced Ghost Notes" a lot quicker. As soon as you have your ghost notes happening, how about adding some hi-hat dynamics to the mix?
The hi-hat is an amazing instrument that offers a great amount of possibilities. Playing it when closed is only one of those many possibilities. The free drum lesson "Beginner Opening-Closing Hi-Hats" is the lesson you'll want to start with to get acquainted with hi-hat dynamic drumming technique. It teaches you basic hi-hat foot independence and 8th note drum beats with open-close hi-hat patterns. The free drum lesson "Intermediate Opening-Closing Hi-Hat" builds on the beginner lesson by adding quick syncopated 16th note open-close hi-hat patterns to the mix. The exercises from "Advanced Opening-Closing Hi-Hat" are a little bit different from the beginner and intermediate free drum lessons, in that they were written to be used as embellishments or as subtle drum fills instead of as drum beats. If you want to make these patterns even more dynamic, add some cross-sticking to the mix.
Cross-sticking is a very popular dynamic drumming technique that changes the overall feel of a song. Its mellower sound is used primarily to tone down sections of songs by subbing full accented snare shots. The way this technique is played is discussed in the free drum lesson "Beginner Cross-Sticking". Accompanying the explanation are some 8th note and 16th note grooves that show you how to mix snare shots with cross-sticking, and how to make your cross-sticking that more dynamic. The exercises from "Intermediate Cross-Sticking" are 16th note and 16th note triplet based. They feature lots of syncopations and broken hi-hat patterns. The intermediate patterns are way more complex and cooler to play.
The exercises from these free drum lessons were designed to have you working on the most important technical aspects behind these dynamic drumming techniques. Once you're comfortable with them, apply what you've learned to the remaining patterns on DrumLessons.com and to the drum beats and drum fills you already know how to play. This is a great way of getting more mileage out of any pattern.