It doesn’t happen often, but recently I had a revelation. Before I reveal it, let me tell you that normally I’d be the last guy to talk about drum loops. Always preferring the “real deal,” I’ve never owned a drum machine or electronic drums. I never triggered my kit, and have never really been a “gear head.” Granted, these traits may have been a professional deficit at times, but honestly, all I’ve ever wanted to do was play the drums.
Some time ago, a studio owner friend of mine played some loops that he’d recently purchased. Name drummers executed them all flawlessly. Being somewhat of a loops novice, I only wanted more. Not more loops, but more groove. I mean, if these guys went through the trouble of setting up, tuning up, getting sounds, and playing, then why not just play each groove much longer? Herein lies my revelation. I thought, “Why don’t I record a library of real drum tracks, instead of mere loops? Each could be the length of the average pop song. Why not even go steps further by adding fills and suitable transitions, as part of the normal sequence of production at a recording session? Kind of like a completed drum track without a completed song.”
Ever since my “a-ha moment” I’ve had the opportunity to flesh out my idea in a series of unique and royalty-free drum tracks I’ve titled Keep It Simple. The series is designed to offer practical songwriting and production solutions. Each drum track is between two and three minutes long and was performed in a single take. The tracks were recorded without editing or digital enhancing. They can be used “as is” or they can be tailored by editing. Keep It Simple, Volume 1 includes thirteen drum tracks and is complete with organic fills, crashes, and ghost notes. It is now available on cdbaby.com or on iTunes.
Unlike ordinary drum loops that can be short and synthetic sounding, my Keep It Simple series provides the organic foundation for any music production. Yes, I realize that there are plenty of good loop libraries on the market. But I recognized that there was a void needing to be filled since most loops are only short segments. These might sound impressive initially, but they don’t create an atmosphere of believability within the music. It becomes apparent that the whole track is synthetic and not really played by a real drummer. With this series, on the other hand, you have full-length drum tracks right out of the box that sound much like the tracks you’d hear at a recording session for your own music. In fact, songs can be composed right on top of the tracks in this series, bringing songwriters and producers one step closer to realizing their music.
Volume 2 of this series will be released in early 2011. I’ll keep you posted about any feedback or developments. Thanks for reading!
For more on Brian Doherty, go to www.briandoherty.net.