by Rich Redmond
One of the frameworks of my drumming philosophy is mastering what I call the “money beats.” These are the five grooves that are used time and time again to make the world laugh, cry, and dance. They are the building blocks of every backbeat drummer’s musical DNA, and they always make people feel great when they’re played with confidence and authority. (You can learn more about all five of these beats in my new book/DVD package, FUNdamentals, which I created along with coauthor Michael Aubrecht.)
In this article we’re going to shake things up a bit and start displacing basic grooves by shifting the snare and bass drum voices by an 8th or 16th note. This is not something you want to do all the time (or at all) in a dance, pop, or rock song; it can actually be a groove killer. But it’s nice to have fun with shifting time while developing ideas for new grooves, fills, and solos. (If you play progressive rock or fusion, you can use these devices much more often without fear of getting fired!)
In the video below are some basic ways to get comfortable with groove displacement. Be sure to practice with a metronome, click track, or drum loop, at all tempos and dynamic levels. For notation of these beats, check out the complete article in the August 2014 issue of Modern Drummer magazine.
Rich Redmond drums for country star Jason Aldean, is an award-winning clinician, and is an active session drummer in Nashville and Los Angeles. His recent book/DVD, FUNdamentals of Drumming for Kids (coauthored with Michael Aubrecht), is available through Modern Drummer Publications.