Jazz Drummer’s Workshop

Stick Control Revisited

Part 2: 3/4 and 6/8 Drumset Applications

by Steve Fidyk

Welcome to the second installment in our series on drumset applications of George Lawrence Stone’s famous book Stick Control. The following variations utilize the “72 Single Beat Combinations” found on pages 5–7.

Let’s begin by reading each Stick Control sticking pattern around the kit while swinging the 8th-note rhythms in 3/4. Here’s Example 3 from page 5.

Stick Control 1

Next, try adding the following bass drum and hi-hat rhythms to accompany the hands.

Stick Control 2

Once you have control of the previous material, choose a sticking pattern from Stick Control and change the subdivision from 8th notes to 8th-note triplets. Here’s Example 46 from page 6, with the second bass drum and hi-hat rhythm.

Stick Control 3

Now try adding 16th-note rhythms to the mix. The next example is a four-measure phrase that makes use of sticking patterns 3 and 5 from Stick Control, with rhythmic combinations of swung 8ths, 8th-note triplets, and 16th notes. Play four measures of time between each example.

Stick Control 4

Continue to experiment with each sticking and rhythmic combination, and come up with your own fill patterns based on the written material. The possibilities are truly endless.

For independence practice in 3/4, try substituting one of the following seven triplet partials for each written sticking. Each R will be played on the bass drum, and each L will be played on the snare.

Stick Control 5

Now try practicing each sticking substitution with the following ride cymbal rhythms.

Stick Control 6

Here’s Example 43 from page 6 of Stick Control, using the third triplet as the substituted rhythms.

Stick Control 7
Once you have control of all seven partials, try reversing the hands so that you’re playing the swing pattern with your nondominant hand. Here’s Example 53 from page 7, substituting the second triplet partial for every R and the third triplet partial for every L.

Stick Control 8

You can also try practicing the stickings with your feet, as quarter-note triplets, while you read each written L sticking on the snare drum in 3/4. Below is Example 1 from page 5.

Stick Control 9

Finally, try practicing the stickings with your feet while adding a 6/8 bell pattern.

Stick Control 10

Here’s that bell pattern over Example 4 from page 5.

Stick Control 11

Next time we’ll examine ways to play Stick Control in two and five.
Steve Fidyk has performed with Terell Stafford, Tim Warfield, Dick Oatts, Doc Severinsen, Wayne Bergeron, Phil Wilson, and Maureen McGovern, and he’s a member of the jazz studies faculty at Temple University in Philadelphia. For more info, visit stevefidyk.com.