This excerpt is taken from the complete article that appears in the November 2015 issue, which is available at here.

Rock Perspectives

Progressive Drumming Essentials

Part 5: Incorporating Odd Groups Into Grooves and Fills

by Aaron Edgar

One of my favorite things to do with quintuplets and septuplets is to create syncopated, angular-sounding grooves. Exploring this unusual territory can lend itself to establishing unique feels with a lot of rhythmic tension.

Last month we discussed how to count and feel quintuplets and septuplets. In case you missed it, I use an Indian counting system. There are many variations of this, but the syllables I like to use are “ta, ka, din, ah, gah” for quintuplets and “ta, ka, din, ah, ge, na, gah” for septuplets. When you’re working on these rhythms, make sure your internal pulse stays rooted to the quarter note (“ta”).

Let’s take a look at a basic quintuplet fill using single strokes. It’s a good idea to anchor the quarter-note pulse with your foot on the hi-hat. Go slowly and start by playing the fill one note at a time while counting out loud. Once you can play the fill comfortably, turn on the metronome and use the fill within a musical context. Try playing it with your favorite 16th-note-based groove.

For more on this topic, including transcriptions of the examples demonstrated in the video below, check out the complete article in the November 2015 issue, which is available at: here.

Learn About the November 2015 issue Featuring Brian Frasier-Moore