Eleven Stroke Roll

In this free drum lesson, Lionel Duperron teaches you how to play the eleven stroke roll, a pattern from the drum roll family of drum rudiments. Give this lesson a try if you’re interested on learning how to play the eleven stroke roll. Don’t worry if you don’t like practicing drum rudiments on a practice pad. This free drum lesson features drum beats and drum fills incorporating the eleven stroke roll. This way, you can practice the eleven stroke roll with your whole drum set.

As you can see on the sheet music below, the eleven stroke roll incorporates five sets of double strokes and a single stroke. The structure of the eleven stroke roll is quite similar to the ones of the seven stroke roll and nine stroke roll. If you’ve practiced any of those drum rudiments beforehand, you should have no problems at all with the eleven stroke roll.

You can also think of the eleven stroke roll as a ten stroke roll where one of the singles is played as a double stroke. Therefore, going through the free drum lesson on the ten stroke roll will help you master the eleven stroke roll way faster.

In the video, Lionel Duperron plays the eleven stroke roll on the practice pad with 32nd note double strokes and a 16th note single stroke, while on the drum set he plays the doubles on the eleven stroke roll as 16th notes and the single as an 8th note. The pattern is still an eleven stroke roll, Lionel just messed around with the note values.

Drum Beats

Exercise #1 is a very cool mix of a 16th note tom-tom drum beat with a 16th note broken hi-hat drum beat. The eleven stroke roll is broken up between the hi-hat and the snare drum on count 1, the floor tom and the snare drum on count 2, and the hi-hat and snare drum on count 3.

Lionel developed a totally different feel by displacing the eleven stroke roll to the floor tom on count 2. That, in conjunction with the syncopated snare shot on the “and” of count 3, makes for a very unique sounding drum beat. Displacing hi-hat notes to other drums is a great way of coming up with new drum beat variations.

The eleven stroke roll in exercise #2 is broken up between the bow of the ride cymbal and the hi-hat on the first two counts. The right hand moves to the floor tom to play the last double of the eleven stroke roll on count 3, while the left hand plays the single stroke as a snare shot on the “and” of that same count. Once you can play the hand pattern comfortably, add the bass drum on all quarter notes.

Drum Fills

Exercise #3 is a 16th note drum fill. The left hand is kept on the snare drum throughout the whole pattern, while the right hand moves around the toms. The biggest challenge you’ll face with this exercise is playing consistent sounding double strokes on the toms. You can’t rely on bounce to get the doubles to sound consistent on the soggy surfaces of toms. Use full wrist strokes or a quick snap of the fingers on the drumstick after playing the first stroke of the double with the wrist. By using one of these techniques you’ll get perfectly sounding double strokes under these conditions.

Exercise #4 is very similar to the previous one. Both hands perform the same rhythmic pattern on the same drums as what we saw on exercise #3. The only difference here is the right hand, which goes around the drums in the opposite direction – from the floor tom to the hi-tom.

After you’re done with the drum beats and drum fills herein, you can keep on challenging yourself. Practice the eleven stroke roll with the single stroke placed at the beginning of the rudiment instead of at the end. If you’d like to further your knowledge on the drum rudiments, we encourage you to learn how to play the thirteen stroke roll and the fifteen stroke roll next.