Hand Co-ordination for Latin Grooves
jazz drumming idea #11
by Tim Lake
The aim of this set of exercises is to develop a degree of independence between the hands by working on playing different 16th note ostinatoes with each hand at the same time.
This was inspired by Antonio Sanchez's playing in the Pat Metheny trio on "Travelling Fast" from Tokyo Day Trip where you can hear an incredibly fluid conversation between the snare drum and the ride cymbal.
You should play a basic foot pattern throughout, just bass drum - hi-hat - bass drum - hi-hat to start with, and then move on to a samba pattern, a baiao pattern or an afro-cuban pattern.
There are several ways to practice this:
- As written, work through each exercise until comfortable.
- Try moving between the exercises without stopping, playing each exercise for 4 bars, then 2 bars, then 1 bar.
- Maintain one pattern in the right hand and move the left hand through the variations.
- Maintain one pattern in the left hand and move the right hand through the variations.
As a right-handed player I've found the last exercise variation to be particularly, but my aim was indeed to free the right-hand to improvise over the left-hand holding a groove.
Start slow, focus on the unisons - don't flam! Work it up, that Metheny tune is very fast!!
Although this was developed for Latin styles, it will equally give you some ideas and independence to apply to other types of jazz drumming.
The full set of exercises is in the PDF.
This was originally posted on "Jazz Drumming Blog" and in the "Ideas for Jazz Drumming" e-book (no longer available). This post has been revised from the original.
Tokyo Day Trip