REFLEXX Practice Pad

REFLEXX practice pad

I’ve used a lot of practice pads over the years, but the REFLEXX is hands down my favorite. I was lucky enough to get one before the first run sold out and have had it for a few months. This practice pad not only feels great, but it sounds great. It’s much quieter than any other pad I own.

I go back and forth between the new REFLEXX and the ProLogix Blue Lightning depending on how much bounce I want. I’ll also defer to the REFLEXX if it’s later at night and I don’t want to wake up my girlfriend in the other room.

A new batch is for sale and shipping soon.

Highly recommended as an addition to any practice pad collection.

Happy New Year!

Note: This is not an advertisement.

Smalls Jazz Club Live

I want to give some love┬áto Smalls Jazz Club. If you’re in New York, it’s a great place to see live jazz for an affordable cover charge. On any given week you can see some of the best musicians in the world in this intimate space. If you can’t get there, you can stream shows live from their website for free. The quality is superb.

Smalls Jazz ClubI first discovered the live stream this summer and was blown away. Over the last several months I’ve got to see and hear Ari Hoenig, Ralph Peterson, Eric Harland, Victor Lewis, Marvin “Bugalu” Smith and so many more amazing players from the comfort of my studio in Minneapolis. This week alone Ulysses Owens Jr. and Eric McPherson are playing there. Next week you can catch Ari Hoenig with Chris Potter. Crazy!

And it gets even better. For only $10 a month you can have access to their archives. If you can, do this not only as a way to access live music, but to support a wonderful club.

I’d recommend checking out Ralph Peterson’s recent sets and also studying the Teodross Avery set.

I met Teodross at Berklee in 1993 and have reconnected with him since, so I wanted to check out what he’s up to. His set at Smalls in October 2016 is burning! Every single member of the band is on fire and Marvin “Bugalu” Smith blew my mind. How had I not heard him before? His playing that night grabbed a strong hold on me, even through the internet. I highly recommend checking out his playing. He’s deep. I still watch or listen to that set about once a week.

Thank you, Smalls!

Triplet Warm Up Exercise

For most of my life warm up exercises were always something I did before gigs. I never really thought too much about warming up for a practice session. Lately, I’m finding that I can practice much longer (physically and mentally) if I warm up.

As with my last post, I try to make sure that I’m not just going through the motions while warming up, but working on something with purpose that’s helping me grow in some way at the same time.

Here’s a simple one that’s great to start slow to work on control while building up the muscle memory to effortlessly pull off singles, doubles and paradiddles between the snare drum and bass drum while playing the standard jazz cymbal pattern.

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Triplet Warm Up for Jazz Drummers

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