Drum Showmanship – How Show Off
Weather you believe it or not; a big part of drumming is being a showman. Being able to capture the attention of the crowd and show them who’s the boss of the drums can add a lot to any show. Not only will they admire your playing, they will also see you really have a feel for the drums. This showmanship can be as easy as playing a few cymbals after a song, or going completely crazy on the drums, and playing a full drum solo. Each way is effective, as long as you make it look flashy. Here are a few tips to really add some flare to the end of your next song.
***Before you read on, note that too much showmanship can be a bad thing. The worst part about being at a show is watching a musician show off too much. When this happens, drummers tend to forget about the music, and play what they want to play instead of what sounds right. So just take a few moments before each ending and decide if what you are about to play will fit into the style of the venue, and the style of the song.
Before we get into song finishers, let’s talk a bit about the set up of your drum kit. This has a lot to do with looking flashy, and can add to and performance. Before you play a show, take a few minutes to shine up your hardware and cymbals on your kit. This can be done with any chrome polish for your stands. Read up on cymbal care for the best polishing methods on your cymbals. When you get to your gig, set up your kit as big as possible. Depending on the size of the stage, really try and make your kit look huge. Another great tip is to set your cymbals up very high. This will force you to move a lot more when you play, making it look like a much harder task then it is. Also, you will give the audience a clear view of you, instead of your cymbals.
There are a lot of many ways to finish a song; however, there are 2 main ones that are the most effective. There is cymbal work – where you play a variety of cymbals with your bass drum. This is a great way to build the energy of the band at the end of any song. This is the most effective way when you are finishing a loud song with everyone in the band at the same time. If you have a set of double bass pedals, use a single stroke or double stroke roll a fast as you can play, crashing every cymbal you have at the same time. Remember, the louder and faster the better. You will hear the crowd in the background just screaming! (At least you want to).
The other way to finish is by playing a mini solo at the end of a song. This can be a basic solo, just played at a faster more upbeat tempo. It doesn’t even matter the tempo of the song you just played, just go nuts. Hopefully your guitarist and bassist will follow you with wild distortion, but just go nuts. Try and incorporate every drum that you have on your kit. Use cymbals as well! When this is done effectively, you will have a chance to not only increase the energy of the room, but also to show off your skills a little. Try doing some tricks that you could not play in the song! No matter what happens in the finisher, you must end together as a band. This is vital for topping off the performance.
Listed are a few ways to add showmanship to your performance. Remember that these are just very basic common knowledge things to do. They are in fact very effective and if you haven’t already tried these you may want to! You do not need to go as excessive as I have described in each song, but you should at least do something on the lines of this. The last song you play in your set list should be the big finishing song. This is where you should really show off what you have!
Related content you may also be interested in...
Improve Your Groove By Playing With Dynamics - What is it that separates professional drummers from the beginners? How come I can’t make a simple beat sound the way my favorite drummer plays it?
Add Creativity To Your Drum Beats - Tired of playing the same old beats? Sometimes as drummers we just need some fresh ideas to mixing things up. In this lesson, I hope to provide you with some tips and suggestions to fill your creativity toolbox.
How To Play A Single Paradiddle - A Very popular and essential rudiment. This pattern will teach you stick independence. It is a little more advanced then the Single stroke roll, and the double stroke roll. Try this in different beats and fills!
To Read Drum Notation and Sheet Music - Music theory is something most drummers do not consider learning. However, as musicians, it is vital to learn the basics. This will teach you note values, as well as other key points to music theory!
Develop Drumming Hand Speed, Power, And Control! - You can play each stroke using your wrists, your fingers, or combinations of both.