Loops have gotten an unfortunate reputation as being a stand-in for real musicians or real musicianship – perhaps because, too often, they are. That’s why it’s always refreshing to see a discussion of how looping can incorporate musical technique. Like many electronic musicians, I have zero background in drumming; I’m a keyboardist and was trained in Classical Piano. But then, part of the gift of being a composer is getting inside the heads of musicians who play instruments you can’t. And when it comes to understanding rhythm, there’s a limitless supply of work to explore from around the world.

Ryan Gauss writes us to share a blog that’s all about rhythm and drumming. Blogging can be a distraction from music making, but in this case, he’s using it to help be even more disciplined in building technique:

Every day I record and post a new drum loop (with a link to the Logic session and .wav files). I organize the beats by category (rock hip hop, jazz etc) and try to change up the production style with every loop.

So far, there’s a terrific piece on “linear drumming” – a style in which you hit only one part of your kit at a time. (Now, this really inspires me in terms of some of the rhythmic sequencing ideas I’ve been thinking about – I’ll have to explore. Maybe I can build a linear pattern sequencer.) See notation at top.

Linear drumming for dummies. | ryangruss.com

There’s also a fantastic video from drummer Shawn Pelton, who to me really exemplifies the marriage of great drumming and sophisticated use of technology (Ableton Live, in this case).

Shawn Pelton’s studio | ryangruss.com

I’ll be reading this site, for sure. Thanks, Ryan.

http://ryangruss.com/ “Fresh Drum Loops Made Daily”
(question – are they best hot, as with Krispy Kreme?)