Beginner Ghost Notes

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Easy Drumming That Sounds Hard

Ghost notes are basically very soft strokes. Ghost notes add feel to whatever you play, being especially applicable to groove based music like funk, hip-hop, blues, fusion, and drum ‘n’ bass. Nonetheless, it’s common to listen to ghost notes in jazz, Latin, pop, and a lot of different styles of rock music. Therefore, learning how to play consistent and low sounding ghost notes is a must if you want to take your drumming to the next level, or even be a professional drummer. In this free drum lesson, Jared Falk teaches you three beginner drum beats that encompass ghost notes, and shares some tips that are sure to help you play ghost notes to your fullest potential in no time.

These exercises are fairly basic variations of the stock 8th note rock drum beat. Focus on the hand patterns if you’re having issues with playing the drum beats as notated. Add the bass drum patterns later on. This is a good way to assure you start grooving sooner rather than later. For more tips on groove development, check the free live drum lessonDeveloping Groove On The Drums.”

These drum beats have ghost notes on the snare drum only. Since ghost notes represent quieter strokes, they are applicable to any other instrument on the drum set, including the bass drum and the toms. Just remember that the secret to playing great sounding ghost notes is in bringing the drumstick or the bass drum beater close to the surface of the instrument you’re about to play on.

You can keep expanding on the content from this free drum lesson by taking these 16th note ghost notes and applying them to other drum beats on We encourage you to do so by going through the free drum lesson “Beginner Linear Drum Beats“. If you’d rather learn new ideas on how to use ghost notes to spice up your drum beats, we encourage you to check the free drum lesson “Intermediate Ghost Notes” next.

This Lesson Has 13 Comments

  • Mike Van Steinburg says:

    Great Video…I’m wondering how you get the notation on your video, is this a desktop recording.if so which one. Thanks…Mike

  • Thorsten says:

    Hey jared,

    good video. One note. When you play the first beat, and then say you’re only adding ghost notes on the snare, that doesn’t seem to be very accurate as it appears there’s also a ghost note on the kick drum thrown in as well?

  • Ady says:

    this video is tuff, go go jared

  • Maria Paula Schotborgh says:

    Great exercise, thank you sooo much!!

  • nikolas says:

    the best thing with u is that u make ur videos easy to understand,rock on jared..

  • reden says:

    amazing !

  • Michael says:

    youre very good…

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  • mark says:

    thank u master jared more power to you

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  • Fenaranjo says:

    Gracias, muy explicativo. Saludos

  • johannes says:

    awesome! now I know how to do it! tnx Jared! :D

  • David says:

    Hi Jared,
    great lessons! When you do the advanced ghost notes lesson, don’t forget their aplication as 32nd notes within a beat or a 9 stroke roll with the hi-hat. You could also show some interesting fills with ghost notes. :-)


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