Add Spice with Triplet Fills
Every drummer will tell you that playing drum fills is one of the most rewarding aspects of drumming. It allows you to express yourself and show off your skills and chops. So how do you spice up your fills and solo’s? There are many ways to add variety and spice to your fills, like triplets for example. These easy to play patterns will change the flow of things, giving your fill a very unique sound. When the crowd hears a triplet fill they think you are playing something off time or off beat. Triplet fills sometimes give the illusion of a different rhythmic pattern, making things sound much more complicated then they already are. So let’s take a look at some basic and more advanced triplet fills.
*If you are unsure of what a triplet is, check out my article on explaining triplets. This will explain everything you need to know about triplets.
Playing a triplet fill can be very simple and easy, or if you want, more advanced and complex. Let’s start with some very basic triplet fills and move up from there. Feel free to add these into any song style or beat. Let’s start with a basic eighth note triplet fill. This fill is very basic and can be very effective. Start on the snare drum, and work your way around the kit. In this example, you hit your snare and your 3 toms. If you do not have 3 toms, or have a different set up, you can easily hit one of your drums twice. To end each of these fills, although it’s not written, you can crash a cymbal. Try this one:
This next example is a little faster so take it slow. Make sure you are hitting each note and not keeping things on time.
Now let’s try something a little more advanced. Instead of using your hands to play triplet fills, let’s incorporate your feet. Playing triplets is a great way to spice beats up, playing triplets with your bass drum adds so much more. With this example, play your snare first, then your bass drum, followed by a tom. You will find this is a little trickier than it looks, but once you get it you will understand why it is so important to learn.
These are a few basic triplet fills revolving around the whole drum set. Practice these outside of your fills so you can master them first, and then incorporate them into songs and beats. You can even create beats out of these concepts. So have fun with these and do not feel limited to what you see. Use the same ideas on different voices of your drum set to get a complete different feel!
By: Dave Atkinson
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