On The Beat With 180 Drums Co-Founder Jake Nicolle: The Evolution of Online Video Drum Lessons

Jake Nicolle

Hi, MD readers! My name is Jake Nicolle, and my founding partner is Steve Augustine. We’ve created 180 Drums, and this is why you should care.

It all started with video. The first time we were able to watch our favorite drummers on old VHS tapes and DVDs (that’s right, DVDs are now old news) we became enamored. There’s something special that happens when you are able to watch your favorite drummer explain why he or she played that specific groove or fill on that record. Hearing drummers play is awesome. Hearing them share their inspiration is powerful.

A lot has been stirring in the world of online education since then. Enter YouTube. Never have there been more videos of drummers wearing lapels with a mic or two on their kit teaching drum lessons.

We spent years crafting an idea, hand-built our own video studio on which we’ve filmed 5,000-plus minutes of lessons and practice videos, flown in some of our favorite drummers from all over the world, and built an online website that looks and feels like it belongs to Apple, Inc.

What makes 180 Drums different isn’t just the website, sound, or video quality, but the way you’ll feel pulling out your phone, tablet, or computer and signing in.

180 Drums

180 Drums is made up of three main categories: Fresh Sticks, 180 Challenge, and Master. Fresh Sticks are the beginner lessons laid out in an easy-to-follow sequence. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a brand new drummer that’s never played a beat before or you’re a drummer who’s looking to touch up on some rusty skills, this is the best place for you. Gear, kit set up, reading, beats, fills, and independence are all topics we cover thoroughly. Advertisement

The 180 Challenge is focused on intermediate but will leave a lot of pros challenged. It’s composed of ninety lessons and ninety practice videos. We have every 180 instructor shoot a practice video for each lesson so you can practice the groove or fill you just learned with the professional drummer you’re trying to imitate. Imagine that! We don’t just help you learn from the pro; we help you become the pro. Each practice video is ten minutes long. A few select tempos are played for at least one minute to help further develop the lesson you just learned. This is unique to 180 Drums and the results we’ve seen with our 180 students have been nothing short of shocking.

Master is, well, crazy. This is where the best of the best show you advanced lessons as well as some of their favorite licks and grooves. Amateur drummers will be inspired and encouraged to learn, while pros will open the door to new ideas and challenging concepts for their own playing.

Thanks for reading!

For more information, visit

180 Drums Video Samples:

Luke Holland Lesson


Luke Holland Practice