Developing Strong Inner Clock – Part 1

In this first in a series of instructional videos created exclusively for SilverFox Percussion, I introduce and demonstrate the time and independence concepts we will be exploring.

In the video, I am playing a 3-2 son clave pattern with my left foot and the “e” of the 16th-note subdivision with my left hand. My right hand reads the chart (download below).

Here’s how to develop this:

  1. Play the chart as written on the snare drum with each hand individually.
  2. Keep time on “e” with one hand while playing through the chart with the other. For example, in the video my left hand keeps time on snare drum while my right hand reads the chart on a tom.
  3. Take each measure one by one and treat it as an ostinato with one of your feet. Keep time on the “e” with one hand while reading the chart with the other. To demonstrate, I used the first measure on the third line (the 3-2 son clave) as my ostinato and played it with my left foot on the hi-hat (and wood block for better clarity). I keep time on “e” with my left hand on the snare drum while reading the chart with my right hand on the 3rd tom.
  4. When you feel very comfortable with all the combinations, it is time to step it up a little bit ;-). We will orchestrate the part that’s keeping time for us. In each 4/4 measure, there are four e‘s. Let’s move them onto 3 different sound sources to create a 4:3 sub-pattern! In the video, I play my left hand on “e” in a pattern between the 1st tom, 2nd tom, and snare. My left foot continues the ostinato and my right hand plays the chart on the 3rd tom.

Stay tuned for more videos on developing these ideas!

sf_downloadpdf Download the PDF Chart