But, just reading about solos won't do you much good. Follow those tips to the letter. I promise results! Soloing is an art form and it must come from within. Input is the first secret! Output is the second.
Start a collection of solo recordings then begin a routine of listen/play. Do it on a daily basis! Don't be afraid to inject your own ideas . . . play what you feel and hear in your head after listening to some of the worlds greatest drummers. It is your solo, so you may do anything you choose! There are virtually no mistakes to worry about! Get it going and don't stop until you decide it is finished. If something you do sounds good by accident, do it again. If it sucks, avoid doing it a second time.
It might help to study these two rolls, in every form they may take.
What follows are a few suggestions that should help to get your own solo engines primed and running:
Strive to play the above roll pattern blazing fast! Watch TV and work with the above triplets on a pillow for long periods (like . . . several eventual hours). Watch the foot! The hard part is playing the bass along with that fourth note. Don't give up until you can do it at warp speed with no mistakes. The most common thing that students will do wrong here is slip into 16th singles as they try to increase speed with 8th triplets. Avoid doing that by accident! It is a good maneuver, if you intend to do it but be alert that it isn't happening by accident.
This is 16th Singles. Know the difference between 16th Singles and 8th triplets. Eventually, they will both dominate your bag of solo tricks . . .
Hear triplets & singles mixed together.
Practice switching between 8th triplets and 16th Singles while maintaining a steady bass flow (or tempo).
Once you can keep a steady bass tempo and switch from one roll to the other, it will be time to climb behind the kit and begin to do your own thing. The sky is the limit! There are no mistakes! If you accidently get your arms and legs tied in a square knot . . . no problem! :>) It isn't a mistake until you lose or stop the beat flow. Really!! It is easy to overcome this entangled dilemma! As your hands become confused . . . stop them but maintain the bass tempo . . . gather your thoughts for a few beats, then jump back in with a vengeance . . . continue on with another roll pattern.
What follows are *ONLY* suggestions. You may do these ideas in any order! Also, I should say . . . these are routines that may be manipulated with *ANY* roll type, including 8th triplets, 16th Singles, 16th Doubles, 16th Paradiddles, 16th triplets, Rogers Ruffs and on and on:
After awhile, go to work on your lame hand . . . do the same type of routines but do them with your weakest hand. It's good practice! Keep it simple at first then grow slowly into more complex patterns. It takes time!
You are playing your roll in a stream of notes and popping accents as you go. Now add a few super accented 'Power Rimshots'. Play with the tonal changes that can occur between accents and 'Power Rimshots'. The rhythmic possibilities are immense. Try to avoid repeating the same routines. Always seek to create new sounds and rhythms. Drop 'Power Rimshots' with either hand. Let it flow and try to be creative!
Try to get the drums talking to each other as in a real conversation. This will include long and short pauses within the roll stream. Add dynamics as in a real conversation. There will be times when it sounds good to scream and times when you want to speak in a whisper. This injects feeling into the solo and it is fun.
If you are the extremely studious type, you might look for books that focus on topics like triplet accents and cross-overs. There are even a few books out there that focus on single, double and paradiddle roll development. I could fill reams of paper with practice routines in each category. You would see endless lines of a particular roll with added accents and complicated cross-over examples. You would see them . . . but would you study them? Most of us bore with that stuff real quick. I know I do! I hold to the original formula . . . 'listen then play'. In that order! You will get where you want to be much quicker this way. Good luck! Burn 'em!
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