Be Yourself

Alan Tauber
Submitted: Fri, August 14, 2015 - 3:57pm EDT
Hand Drumming at the Charles River, Boston, MA
Learn everything you can from your instructor, books, Live shows, YouTube, TV; but then realize that you have to be...YOU!

Bringing yourself to the drum set or to the djembe drum, dumbek conga or other instrument, means just that. It is you that is playing the drum.

I do believe that inspiration from artists you admire, that inspiration can go a long way you're bringing you to the drums and giving you some energy with which to develop your style. But in the long run you don't really want to sound like your favorite drummer. Your goal should be, if you want to have a goal, to sound like you!

So some things to keep in mind would be being super relaxed when you play, or in fact whatever you do. Also, and I know this is hard for younger drummers, keep your spine perfectly straight. Get your shoulders back and do not slump forward. Alan Dawson, a big influence on me and a teacher of mine, had back issues and he insisted his students should sit straight. I remember how hard it was to believe that I could have feel in my playing while sitting straight. But, you can. And when you do all of those things, and you're relaxed, you'll be able to play faster, with more feel and for a much longer period of time before fatigue sets in.

That's my tip for today. Enjoy!

Rhythms for Djembe in 4