10 tips for successful drum depping
23rd Nov 2009 | 12:25
How to cope with deputising a drummer
Your throne awaits... © Arthur Baensch/Corbis
One of the best ways to improve your drumming (playing and confidence) is to fill in for another drummer. It's never easy, though, so here's Rhythm Magazine's run-down on how to cope…
10 drum depping tips
1. Do volunteer
As mentioned previously, deputising for a fellow drummer really is one of the best ways to improve your playing range and increase your skills.
2. Seriously, do volunteer
Having to get it right first time is nerve-racking, but will do wonders for your confidence when you emerge triumphant.
3. Be prepared
Preparation is the key. If it's an originals band they will probably have their own CD which you must learn thoroughly.
4. Do your homework
If it's a show then go see it, tape it, copy Parts, get a CD.
5. Learn the playlist
If it's a covers band try and get a song list and do your best to track down any tunes that are unfamiliar.
Next page: change your tempo, accommodate, stick choice
6. Learn the encores, too, just in case
There are loads of cheap compilations out there stuffed with classics and current favourites in every style.
7. Be prepared to change the tempo
Every band that plays an old standard like 'Midnight Hour' or 'I feel Good' does it at their own tempo...
8. Be accommodating
...so there's never any point in arguing over tempos. Just smile accommodatingly, say, 'Sorry my fault ' and adjust your speed.
© Ant Strack/Corbis
9. Follow the band
Don't get carried away and play too fast. Try to suss the band's feel – who pushes the tempos and who's laid back.
10. Take a range of sticks
Always have a good range of sticks, brushes etc - you never know what noise level you will be playing at until you're into the first set.
For the best monthly drumming tips, video lessons and reviews, check out Rhythm Magazine.