This next free drum lesson is on one of the flam based drum rudiments, the flam tap. The flam tap is basically an 8th note double stroke roll whose first stroke is flammed. For helping you master the flam tap, Lionel Duperron came up with this very cool free drum lesson. Here, you’ll learn how to play and practice the flam tap, and better yet, how to apply it creatively to your drum beats and drum fills.
The name of this drum rudiment tells us exactly how it is played. The flam tap is a flam followed by a tap or single stroke. Since the flam tap is built around the double stroke roll and the flam, it’s essential for you to learn how to play those two drum rudiments before you go through this free drum lesson on the flam tap.
Taking a look at the sheet music below, you can see that the flam tap naturally alternates within itself. As you practice the flam tap, make sure you don’t undermine the most important aspects behind playing great sounding flam based drum rudiments – flam quality and consistency.
As a quick reminder, don’t forget that for playing great sounding flams, the grace notes have to be played as close as possible to the primary stroke, and with the drumstick positioned very close to the surface of the drum.
Exercise #1 is an 8th note half-time drum beat that has you playing flam taps on the hi-hat. As soon as you can play the hand-to-hand flam taps on the hi-hat, add a flam to the snare drum on count 3 and an open hi-hat stroke to the “and” of count 4. Practice closing the hi-hat on count 1 of the following bar before you add the bass drum into the mix.
Exercise #2 is an 8th note half-time drum beat. The flam tap is played between the hi-hat and the bow of the ride cymbal on the first two counts. On count 1, the grace note is played on the hi-hat and the primary and tap strokes are played on the bow of the ride cymbal. This is reversed for count 2. The grace note is played on the bow of the ride cymbal and the primary and tap strokes are moved to the hi-hat. Once you’re able to play this accurately, add a unison stroke between the floor tom and the snare drum on count 3, and a stroke on the bow of the ride on the “and” of count 4. Finally, add the bass drum on all quarter notes.
Exercise #3 is an 8th note drum fill that incorporates the flam tap and the flam. Start by learning the hand pattern. The flams are played on count 1 and on the “and” of count 2. The flam taps are performed on counts 3 and 4. Once you have all of those components under control, add the bass drum on all quarter notes.
Exercise #4 is a combination between the flam tap, the single stroke roll, and the flam. The first flam tap is played on count 1, between the snare and the floor tom. The second flam tap is played on count 2, and is scattered between the snare drum and the hi-tom. The single stroke roll is played between the snare drum and the floor tom on count 3. A flam on the snare drum finishes things up on count 4. Leading the single stroke roll with the left hand is a great idea here. It’s easier to get to the floor tom in time to play the “ah” of count 3 this way.
The material on drum rudiments you have at your disposal on DrumLessons.com is very extensive, and can get even bigger if you just take your time to experiment with different possibilities. By doing so, you’ll not only practice drum rudiments and enhance your hand technique, but also develop independence and your own voice behind the drum set, while having a ton of fun at the same time.