John Riley – The Art of Bop Drumming
May 09 2015
Well-known for his creative flexibility and musicianship, John Riley has worked with such jazz mainstays as Stan Getz, Dizzy Gillespie or Miles Davis. This method includes solos, patterns, tips, and exercises in time playing, comping, soloing, and brushes. Also included are Jazz essentials and charts.
The CD included features exercise examples and play along tunes with Bob Mintzer (tenor saxophone), Phill Markowitz (piano), James Genus (bass), and John Riley (drums).
The Art of Bop Drumming has been split into 7 main sections – time playing, comping, soloing, brushes, more jazz essentials, charts, and the appendix. Every section is packed with quite a lot of detail, and there are tracks from the cd accompanying the notated examples. It’s all really easy to follow, and starting with some simple exercises, it takes you step by step to some more challenging stuff.
As well as the examples, the cd has some play-along tracks with the drum part removed, so you can play the drum part with the backing band. It’s great fun too!
The section on time playing includes some good pages on using the ride cymbal, bass drum, and hi-hat to keep the pulse. There are also a couple of nice pages on practicing including what to practice, goals, warming up, and keeping it fun.
The section on comping is really detailed, in fact it’s the biggest area covered in the book. It helps get your limbs moving independently, covers comping with the snare drum and bass drum, and accompanying a soloist.
There are around 10 brush patterns covered, all for different tempos and time signatures, and all with pictures of the brush movements. Really good!
As for the other sections, the pages on ‘more jazz essentials’ covers playing the shuffle, playing in “2”, 3/4 waltz, samba, 12/8 feel, and mambo. The section on charts goes over some pretty standard reading info, and the appendix has a cool recommended listening area with great players like Max Roach, Art Blakey, Roy Haines, Philly Joe Jones, Mel Lewis, and Frankie Dunlop being featured.
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