Strictly Technique

A Musical Approach To The Single Stroke Roll


by Tom Lonardo

The single stroke roll has always presented some interesting points for discussion. The most common method for teaching and practicing this rudiment has basically been alternating sticking, tarting slowly and gradually accelerating to top speed, with no inherent regard for tempo. This is a poor method for a number of reasons: First, it encourages the player to rush, or at least feel the sensation of rushing. Second, it does not teach a value for meter concepts, and thirdly, our notational system does not have a true means of presenting the way in which most drummers practice the rudiment.

The method presented below incorporates the elements of 1) a constant tempo throughout 2) notational interpretation 3) a polymetrical concept 4) The rudiment retains its character as an excellent exercise for the development of speed and endurance.

The following rules are suggested: 1) Set your metronome at a comfortable setting 2) Practice each exercise in series (one into another) 3) Gradually increase the metronome speed by a beat or two, per week.
Strictly Technique